Sunday, February 14, 2016

Love's Labor Lost--Broverbs for Valentine's Day

Love's Labor Lost?
(Broverbs for Valentine's Day)
We can sit and scribe our verses
From now until we die,
But who, if asked to read them,
Will find a reason why?
We can sow our seeds of wisdom--
And weep, that all our toil
Was wasted, since the seedings
Were all on barren soil.
We can spend our waking lifetimes
In struggles, pay the cost
From what we left neglected,
Yet see our labors lost.
We can teach and we can nurture;
We can fuss, as carers must.
We can build, with patience, structures--
And see them turn to dust.
So when we're in the twilight,
With darkness drawing near,
We then might slow from slaving
And pause to shed a tear.
But then it's time to wipe it
And wistfully to smile,
For if, with heart, we labored,
It was surely worth our while.
And if some satisfaction,
Some pleasure in the task,
For a year or for an instant,
Was ours--what's left to ask?
Let's leave what's past to others,
And what's to come to fate.
The present time is precious
And not for waste in hate.
There's joy in our creations,
However small they be.
We bring them through gestations
And then we set them free.
Like children, they may flourish.
Like seedlings, they may die.
How many are our hatchlings--
How few will live to fly?
We seek for recognition.
A smidgen should suffice.
We warm our hands with praises--
For soon, we'll meet with ice.
Our children may be stolen.
With broken hearts, we cry.
But if we know they're tended,
With souls content, we die.
We labor for the joy of it.
We labor for our bread.
We labor for the smile we get,
From duty and from dread.
And when we shirk our labor,
We're often in torment.
Some say they live for pleasure,
Yet rarely are content.
Our lives are often muddles.
What hubris, then, to say
It's pleasure, love or duty
Or work that clears the way.
We can live for just this instant;
We can live for what we lost;
We can live to build the future.
In each, there's always cost.
And those, who're truly humble,
Of their virtues, might be proud,
But equally, of those failings
That they rarely speak of loud.
For those, who see no failings
In themselves, are surely blind,
And those, who see them clearest,
Are souls of deepest mind.
A vice that's partly conquered
Is like a foe defeated;
It's best to leave it extant,
Lest hubris be repeated.
The greatest pride of humans,
We're told, is that of pride.
Yet pride, in honest labor,
Is a lion each can ride.

In all things, there's a balance;
There's yang that waits in yin.
Too little--and we're tortured;
Too much--and we're in sin.
What's savored best at leisure
Is rarely sensed in haste.
Who never knows of hunger,
Can scarcely know of taste.

So too, a length of failure
Lends flavor to success.
And each is best, not scanty
But neither in excess.
Let's take what we are given--
And that, with gratitude.
Why pine for what was owed us?
We owe, in plenitude.
2016 February 14th, Sun.
Brooklyn, New York

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