Thursday, August 8, 2013

A Ramble and a Rant--Part I

A Ramble and a Rant
Part I – A Ramble

When I was young, I read or I was told
That you can tell a lunatic by this –
A person who believes that he is sane
But is convinced that all the rest are not.

I look around, and more and more, I see
That people rarely question what they do,
For if they did, they'd see the craziness.
I wonder, does this mean that I'm insane?

I also see, the ones who're sensitive,
The ones who care, are diligent to fault –
They seem to be the ones, who're most at risk
Of going quietly mad from hopelessness.

When I was young, I saw a fly that buzzed
Against a window pane.  It beat its wings
And dropped, at end, exhausted – there to die.
How many now are caught, as was that fly?

The sages say to find the peace within.
The seers speak of vision, bright and clear.
But when our work, our lives, are steeped in sin,
Can far be seen – or even what is near?

We learn a language – and what's right and wrong.
And languages, and morals  too, may vary.
But when there is a moral conflict, then
The ones of stronger conscience meet travail.

In this our world, where men can feed on men,
Our ethics turn to baggage that we carry,
And those with less can speed along with ease
And so can prosper.  Those with more cannot.

Our morals had evolved within our clans,
Where actions had their consequences as
The ones aggrieved or aided would be there,
To give to us, at end, what we deserved.

But now, we interact with strangers, who
Are next to naught to those who swindle, rob
Or even murder, singly or en masse,
And then depart – to dine and soundly sleep.

And so we did, with beasts we chased and killed,
Although some thanked the spirit of the beast,
While others thanked that god, who had ordained
That all that lived was their inheritance.

Religions, laws arose to meet the needs
Of people, unacquainted, thrown together,
With old constraints removed, in childhood learned,
With gentle arts that sprang from loving hearts.

But love and friendship bind, with tenderness,
The ones who're bonded by their births or chance,
And few are they, who're sainted far enough
To stretch these spheres to all that lives on Earth.

It's clear enough that laws, religions were
And still are used to keep us herded, tame,
Obedient to our masters, who exploit
Our labor in a god's or nation's name.

And so it is that hierarchies abound,
Be they in lands of empires in the east
Or north or south or west.  And each must bow
And be a vassal to a lord or god.

For even as there is, in all but few,
A sense of fairness, justice, equity,
There also is, it seems, proclivity
To be a serf – or else a master be.

How little do we know of history!
For even where traditions tell a tale,
How much of it is myth, we do not know,
And every nation centers on itself.

So victims' children may recall, perhaps,
The horrors past, those bloody annals that
The perpetrators' children glorify
Or do not care to know or understand...

And victors soon can occupy the place
That despots past assumed – and be the lords
To which the vanquished pledge their fealty.
So brigands rise, in time, to be as gods.

For see, we strive to learn the victors' tongue.
We ape their habits – and their vices, most.
We scorn the ones who feebly might resist,
As we, of newest lackey stations, boast.

2013 August 8th, Thu.

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