We surely need to turn away from that
Which drives us mad by slow degrees – or fast.
But in our times, that turn is hard to make.
The place, for sanity, is often last.
We lose awareness. So the mind, confused,
Is driven into darkness. There, it’s lost –
And seeks for light in ways that darken more.
We sin in blindness and we pay the cost.
We act from anger or its kindred causes,
And our discomfort is expressed in ways
That transfer that disturbance to another.
And so is karma wrought, as evil stays.
The one who harms is harmed by what he does,
Although this might not seem to be the case,
For himsa will extract, from each, that price
That’s marked – and which we mortals can’t erase.
We turn from madness, from the rushing mob,
But find that we ourselves are deemed as mad.
No matter. Though the cost again is high,
It's better paid than that more lethal price.
2015 April 14th, Tue. 12:07 am Brooklyn, New York
Note: The word himsa is the opposite of ahimsa, the a- prefix in Sanskrit being cognate to that in "amoral", "atheist", "asexual" etc. The two Sanskrit words may be translated into English as "violence" and "non-violence", respectively. Both these translations are, however, approximate and incomplete.