Tag Archives: common measure

Imagining the Cost: common measure

For those hard up against the wall,
imagining the cost
they pay for each small victory,
compared to what is lost,

when those who may yet stand
refuse and meekly kneel,
or worse, just fold their praying hands
against reason’s appeal,

may be the hardest part.
What honor is enough,
to heal such wounds as these,
succor the sterner stuff,

when those you fight to free:
the so-called meek and mild,
deride your vanity
and chide you as a child

to put away your swords,
and fight no more anon,
since all that’s clean and good
has long been dead and gone.

13 FEB 2017

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Look Inward, Angel: common measure

“As any fool could plainly see,
and you can see it plainly,”
were words my father spoke to me
in jest, sometimes, but mainly

to illustrate a simple point:
that often, a solution
is right in front of us, and needs
from us no contribution.

Perhaps he oversimplified,
attempting to be witty;
but nonetheless, some grain of truth
can be found in this ditty.

We know the truth, what’s right and wrong;
there’s no need of a teacher.
To find the essence of this life
requires no saint or preacher.

The wise men all say look within;
and still, we focus outward.
Is it because we’re deaf, or stupid?
Maybe we’re just cowards.

02 MAY 2011

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Musings on Holy days: common measure

My house is not a Christian home;
I serve much older gods.
So there are times this world and I
would seem to be at odds.
I do not mean the world, per se,
the growing, greening life;
but rather, those who fill it up
and wish to create strife.

I tolerate the point of view
of those who think their path
is the sole method for success;
I shake my head, and laugh.
Their holidays I don’t observe
(which raises a few brows),
and hold my tongue while they defend
and tout their sacred cows.

But they insist that I reform
(while standing at arm’s length)
and tell me that to find true peace
I need their Saviour’s strength.
With quotes from books and lengthy quips
my ears are filled and stuffed
(which makes me wonder now and then
why once is not enough)

Among my friends, I number some
from every path and creed;
and on the average, most of them
I’d help if they had need.
But those who shun my friendship
on the basis of belief
are those who I would rather leave
to their gods for relief.

Some are surprised that I believe
in anything at all;
the basis for my way of life,
they guess is base and small.
Without a weekly term at church
(which they seem to require)
it’s hard for them to understand
how I can stay inspired,

And live in peace and harmony,
extending helping hands
where needed to lift up each other
and meet life’s demands.
I rarely bother to expound
how I engage the world,
but instead prove by actions,
not words, with my fist uncurled.

From most, there is acceptance
(well, at least, an easy truce)
and where not, my philosophy
is conflict has no use;
For we must live together,
and one’s faith is private stuff;
there is no need to make demands –
The world does that enough.

There is a happy medium;
we do share common ground.
At their core, most religious paths
are similar, I’ve found.
All I suggest is sapiens
nihil affirmat quod
non probat
. You do what you like;
I serve much older gods.

11 APR 2004

sapiens nihil affirmat quod non probat: a wise man states as true nothing he does not prove (don’t swear to anything you don’t know firsthand)

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Untitled: a common measure quintet

If there is method in this madness
by which I compose,
there ought to be at least one moment
when that sense is shown.

That’s not the case; when words
come out, they oft betray
no common ground with sanity,
but are a madman’s play.

Perhaps that is the goal:
to purge with flowing pen
the ink-stained fingers of the soul
so they can write again.

It seems unlikely though, I fear,
for these words rarely seem to cease;
were their intent to cleanse and clear,
at some point I’d expect decrease.

But still they come, just as they please,
in different forms and varied measures,
as hurricanes or gentle breezes,
half-cast clods of clay, or treasures.

10 APR 2004

by stanza: common measure, short measure, short hymnal measure, long measure, long hymnal measure

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