Saturday, July 19, 2014

Bump on a Log


"If a tree falls in a forest and no one is around to hear it, does it make a sound?” 


Don’t bother answering that— 
Whether in forest or not, 

Stand there long enough 
Doing nothing and sure 

Enough you’ll hear that 
Splitting cry of “Timber!” 

Definitely not whispering sweet 
Nothings in your ear. 




4 comments:

  1. Ah, now you've got my philosophical gears spinning...

    Shall we say that language (poetical language, in particular) can extend beyond its own natural limits, in the way the "Timber" voice will ultimately sound even in the absence of falling trees, and in so doing reveal the "infinity of Nature" itself?

    There are no "sweet nothings" in the world or, in different words, poetry would always be compelled to end itself in one absolute expression or artistic form. There's no denying the inner voice.

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  2. and we're just suppose to take your word for it? no questions asked?

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  3. Vassilis,

    Funny thing about poems, all things to all people & all that...

    For me, the best ones are the ones that make me read, think, read again. This would be one of those.

    But these days the internet scares me to death.

    My responses to so many things seems to suggest that I am responding to something only I can make out.

    For instance, I take it the comment of "Richard" intends to suggest something or other...

    But... what?

    So -- you know how it is. You want to be fair, you want to give people a break, you go and look at their own productions.

    Jeez.

    Here, amid the proudly displayed hunting trophies and carefully mounted hunting rifles (one must assume they shoot real bullets at real living creatures, and for some crazy reason my imagination tells me those creatures whose heads Richard has on his wall were once actually oh, say, one million times more beautiful than our heroic-sarcastic Nimrod commenter himself) , we discover the core of Richard's poetic genius:

    i want to bite you
    so bad
    it hurts when i smile

    you've not been bitten
    until i
    have done the biting

    ....and the really scary thing -- yes, I took his word for it, no questions asked.

    (How many thousand times a day must one ask oneself, how can one go on doing this?)


    i want to bite you
    so bad
    it hurts when i smile

    you've not been bitten
    until i
    have done the biting



    This must be terminal.

    And now and then, one even winds up thinking about this utter entropic breakdown in communication.

    For instance, our company here today.


    i want to bite you
    so bad
    it hurts when i smile

    you've not been bitten
    until i
    have done the biting

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  4. An interesting take on this poem, Conrad—though applicable, it could also be viewed as a poem about facing the reality of having lived a relatively self-complacent life where nothing much happened until you hear the Almighty (in the guise of Paul Bunyan) knocking you out for good. I must admit your interpretation is more appealing.

    As for the rest of the comment stream, don’t bite or shoot me but I’m going to paraphrase a hackneyed saying which fits perfectly here, namely that one man’s game is another man’s poison.

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