Monday, April 25, 2022

Lesson with Garden Tools

When he said to turn the other cheek
He meant there was nothing more to learn
From being slapped.

Ah but there are cushions here,
Moments of warmth, a cool breeze
To contemplate abstractions 
As if they are the things
We make believe are real:
Lawn furniture, blue gardens,
Chicken wire on the jacuzzi.

So it is with Consequence
And Destiny and other fabled gimcracks 
Standing in our way
Like a leaky hose, something to fix 
Or let go of, as the test invites you to choose
What to pay attention to
And what you can leave alone.

The rocks succumb eventually
To our protestations.
There are valves to replace,
Tightenings to accomplish,
People to consult as if they know anything
Of the particular problem you are facing,
Which is always the same:

Why am I here, futzing with levers,
Leveraging ideas, chessboarding people
As deep background research for
The scholar of my higher soul
Whose invisible mortarboard
Waves over the proceedings
Like a shadow.

The weathervane spins, as if to tell me something
I could somehow learn.
A voice flows like a sacrament,
Posing a thought as if it
Was alive.
And, somehow, it becomes so,
Long enough to think I know

What it is, and be disappointed 
It has folded itself back in on me,
How I look with what I already know,
Trying to fit the circumscribed 
Into a tinier scheme
Like compost from a shovel
To a pot that is too small

So that something will grow,
And grow it does,
The obligatory miracle,
Everything around us sways
Nodding to our mind
As it yields its own 
Unaccountable fruit.