The Layers by Stanley Kunitz
I am repeating myself because I sent this poem out into the ether earlier in my blogging life. It bears repeating. I remind myself from time to time about what I want from this one and precious life. Nowadays the buzz word is mindfulness, but the concept behind mindfulness is as ancient as time. At least as ancient as man’s consciousness began to reflect upon its self-awareness. Our lives are different to those that were lived by the peoples of ancient civilizations, but in the perspective of the brain evolution, that span of time is just a nano second, so it is worth reflecting upon how humans in the past have reconciled themselves to the parodoxes that appear in all our lives. You can choose from the philosophers who all have a different take , or the religious men who all have their differing stories they want to share, or you can listen to the poets. The poets assume nothing of the reader, do not desire any allegiances, demand no tithes. They write about the human experience because they are stuck in it. And in that attempt to soothe themselves a line of energy transmits from them to the reader. Sometimes it simply vaporises and never arrives anywhere, it just disappears as a coil of smoke will disappear into the air. Other times it sends an electric current through the reader and the reader is changed forever. As all the food that we eat, the sights that we see, the people we meet all impact on the messages our brains control our minds with, so with words.