Tag Archives: conformity

Not My Fate: a ballade supreme

They say that love will break your heart,
that trouble waits along the way,
discouraging those at the start
to risk or even try to play;
so many rise and greet the day
expecting nothing good or kind,
and thus, not seeking, never find
the reasons why a life goes by
in come and go, in came and went:
alone we live, alone we die.

They say the race goes to the smart,
that muscled effort is no way
to push or pull the heavy cart
that is a life’s work, day to day.
And the result? So many stay
so far inside a life of mind,
with limbs grown weak, with eyes gone blind;
Why would one even try to fly,
with wasted wings, worn out and bent?
Alone we live, alone we die.

They say that each must learn their part:
that everyone’s a part to play;
a chosen few are called high art –
the rest mere chorus, or display,
with narrow range, a single way
to move and speak their meager lines.
How in this way can one find
their calling, or their reason why,
typecast as just a single kind,
alone we live, alone we die?

I say love suits the heart just fine,
that life is more than toil and grind.
Their bale pronouncements are a lie!
To their sad fate, I’m not consigned:
to live alone, and alone, die.

13 NOV 2010

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The Same Old Song: a ballade

Each night we play, you come to catch the show;
to see and be seen seeing, more to fact:
to smile like you alone are in the know
regarding “hidden treasures” like our act .
Let’s hope the grand veneer won’t start to crack,
and everyone will want to sing along
when next week, at the same time, we’ll be back
to play, almost by heart, the same old song.

Your faces melt in constant ebb and flow.
Sometimes, there’s no one there; sometimes, it’s packed.
The seasons change as students come and go,
but we remain to strum right through the slack.
Some nights, we’re less on stage than out in back,
yet no one says a word or thinks it’s wrong.
You only wonder just when we’ll get back
to play, almost by heart, the same old song.

It’s a grand institution, we all know:
a music that will always take you back
to when you felt alive and free to grow,
before you learned the social art of tact,
to multiply in silence, and subtract
each year when it arrives, and shuffle on,
another faceless card dealt from the stack
to play, almost by heart, the same old song.

Another night: we’re on, and you’ve come back;
the rhythm, like a river, moves us on
and on again, along life’s winding track,
to play, almost by heart, the same old song.

11 NOV 2010

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