In the papers of a deceased friend, I found three poems—obviously by my hand—though unable to identify to what purpose they had been written (what precipitated the "writing event" so to speak), why I had given them, nor even, though I might surmise fifteen years ago, when they had been written. Perhaps they were trials for a new book which never came to pass. Clearly they were marked as three separate poems in manuscript, though, with no follow-up, it seems germane to compile them together into one unit. They share a common style, though exactly what I may have been driving at escapes me.
As Krishna to Arjuna said,
“Already them you slay are dead,”
He walks in life a hollow man,
Illusory, a charlatan,
A cipher—but the outward form
Without the soul to keep it warm,
And, like the sudden spring of traps
When ground gives way, he must collapse.
Suddenly and spontaneous
The moment, when it reaches thus,
All that had been before, entire
Must scald in transformation’s fire,
And, as he takes that sudden slip,
All wealth, all joy, relationship
So alter irrevocably
That pity but remain to see.
When all the dreaming has been spoiled,
The false illusion sullied, soiled,
Then will the soul’s despair begin
And panic set, and roost therein.
The soul, in her surprise and haste
Will wonder how it came to waste,
So much of beauty it did find
Imagined only in its mind.
When the mirage evaporates
But leaves behind some petty hates,
Then wonderment will not suffice
To compensate for such a price.
Murder will out. The truth be told—
In her despair not be consoled
The soul that sold her truth downstream
Pretending true what did but seem.
Thus misalliance breeds contempt
From angels, not a soul exempt
From repercussions of the fact
Inherent in unholy act—
’Twere not a case of race or creed
In which disaster plants its seed,
But rather both in temperament
And motivation of intent.
The soul, as it commits the wrong
Itself, however weak or strong,
Yet knows where lies the heinous fault
If keeping true, be difficult.
Then, later, much beseeching God
Nor turn nor temper heaven’s rod,
As consequence of karma falls
In even stroke as it appalls.