Plato’s Cave (Tanka)

Shapes on the cave wall
Mind-mist, distorted; unreal
Crawl into the light
Eyes adjust to sunlight
Reality seems insane

10/5/17

This was written in response to Colleen’s Weekly Poetry Challenge No. 53 – MIST & SHAPE.

Advertisements

The Key

The Key

Sore knees kneeling
Inside darkened doorways,
Pants worn to threads,
Back aching bending,
Peering through the keyhole
To see the world outside.
Pure light stinging,
Eyes tearing,
Cannot look away,
Trying to piece together
What is on the other side.
Family and friends
Huddled behind you
Watching puppet shadows
On the wall.

Open the door
—You’ve always had the key—
Sunlight warm,
Pure, blinding, hurting,
Don’t recoil, or turn away,
Stand; face the day,
Open the shades,
Fill the house with light.

7/21/17-7/26/17

Original keyhole image is by Storye Book. It was found at WikiMedia Commons  & modified by myself using Photoshop.

Sophia

Oh, Sophia Shekinah,
Socrates-lover, Plato-Friend,
Maternal dwelling of the Logos.
Sefirah, emanating
From the crown of creation without end,
Wisdom, Understanding: Knowledge.
Understanding wisdom is knowing
That you know nothing.

6/7/17

Notes:
Shekinah (Hebrew:שכינה ) – Pronounced Sha-kee-nah. Literally “dwelling.” A Rabbinic term for the presence of God, held by some to be the feminine attribute of God. See more here.
Sefirah (Hebrew: סְפִירָה ) – Pronounced Se-fir-ah. Literally “emanation.” A term from Kabbalah. See more here.
Logos (ancient Greek λόγος) – Pronounced “low-gose,” which has been used as a term in Philosophy and Theology since the time of Heraclitus. See more here. I’ve written about the Logos previously.

Dreams of Poems Already Written

Allen was in Asgard reciting America and
Singing the Buddhist Bible Blues for All-Father Odin
While Bobby and Baldr compared notes concerning
Daily dreams of darkness, depression, and death.
Byron rode up and down Bifröst bridge
Writing a poem about Don Juan
(No, not that one, the new one!)
Marcus Aurelius read the mythologies of Midgard,
Studied philosophy with Plato,
Admiring the stoicism of Socrates,
As Rimbaud wrote rhyming prose about Ragnarök,
Containing nothing but the truth,
Delivering it to Valhalla for the consideration of
Siddhartha, Thor and Wōđanaz.

4/2/17

Poem #3 for National Poetry Writing Month (aka #NaPoWriMo)

Seeing the Light

It is impossible to learn
What you think you already know.
You must unlearn what you have learned,
Realize that you don’t know anything:
You know nothing.
Only then can you remove the blinders,
Be free of the shackles,
And stand in the pure light of the day.

3/12/17

Haiku Written While Reading Book V of Plato’s Republic

plato

The man holds knowledge.
He knows something, not nothing.
Nothing can’t be known.

11/16/16

Notes:
Image is a detail from Raphael’s School of Athens featuring Plato.

Outside the Cave

Break on through the doors of perception,
Cleansed by fire, cooled by the rains,
Pure infinite light casts shadows on the wall,
Remove the blinders, break your chains.

Crawl out into the daylight on the other side,
Leave the other slaves behind.
They see a madman, delusional brain
They can’t see the wisdom on which you’ve dined.

3-4 October 2016

Inspired by The Daily Post‘s prompt: Breakthrough

Is There Anybody Out There?

Can anyone out in the hallway hear me?
Skrit-Scratching on the walls,
Floor to ceiling pencil poems
In prescription-cursive fonts,
Hand cramps trying to keep up
With the torrent through my cortex.
Thoughts crying out, screaming the night,
Jolting awake, dream-fog questioning
The reality of sounds in the dark.
Strain to hear soft sobs through
Shared bathroom walls,
Fetal-curled on the tile floor.

Randomly reciting passages from Plato
Epictetus and the Buddha.
Waiting for the appropriate countersign
From Aristotle, Epicurus and the Gita.
Murmur-chanting Howl and America
Softly, steadily swaying like a Rabbi praying Torah.

Desperately shoving notes and folded photographs
Under the cell door, hoping an Orderly doesn’t see.

Walls full, pencil broken
Poetry flows on, scratched into the floor,
A spiraling binding protection circle of words
Writ with a broken bloodied fingernail.

20-21 September 2016

Written in response to The Daily Post‘s Daily Prompt: Silence