Daily Archives: March 16, 2017

Luck and Chance: epistle

“Dear John,” the letter read, “I seek advice.
You seem to know some things, and seem quite nice.
I wonder what you think of luck and chance.
Do you believe we twirl in a mad dance
of accidental happenings and such,
or does belief in fate stretch it too much?”

“Sincerely, someone who would like to know.”
I thought a moment, tossing to and fro
a myriad of possible replies.
Just how to cut an answer down to size?
“Dear someone,” I began, “to tell the truth,
no matter which I choose, there is no proof.

Some folk would say you cannot beat dumb luck;
that skill and expertise are often stuck
and mired by subtle cages of the known –
restraints on movement within certain zones
that dilettantes so blithely disregard,
complaining learning them is just too hard.

It’s true enough that luck trumps skill at times;
one could lay odds and win most of your bets.
Still, in the larger scheme of things, one finds
relying on mere chance cause for regret.
What works due to coincidence a while
lacks substance and fades quickly out of style.

So count yourself as lucky, if you wish,
but while good fortune holds, learn something new.
Far better, in the end, to learn to fish
than to expect the fish to come to you.
Sincerely, just another wondering soul
whose portion often overflows his bowl.”

16 MAR 2017

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The Fall of Because: epilog

Of what’s been done, and heard, and seen,
one might well ask, “What does it mean,
that this and thus, in such a way
should through their actions in this play
express a meaning, none too clear,
expose a hidden weakness, fear,
and in absentia, second-hand
portray the worst or least in man:
the tendency to thoughtless act,
to find succor in faith, not fact,
and in the end, to just succumb
without a fight, struck deaf and dumb
by baffling bullshit strewn about
to fertilize the seeds of doubt
and fool even the wisest lot
into accepting what they’ve got
as the best way to run a thing,
and make the biggest fool their king?”

If that’s the king, then watch the knaves!
Observe the way the court behaves
when chaos in the castle breeds
a subterfuge that does not need
to hide its wretched plots at noon.
Beware! The end is coming soon;
and who is now called a buffoon
may turn to tyrant in a flash,
rewarding only those with cash
and sugared words upon their tongues.
What use then to be found among
brave souls for truth, or common sense?
That armor serves as poor defense
against the coming hateful rage
of those who cannot see the cage
outside the walls of the small cell
we think is the world where we dwell.

16 MAR 2017

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