Contemplation Is An Endangered Thesis

Freedom today means the freedom to buy whatever my little heart desires. In a single click sometimes. The freedom to rate products anywhere from one star to five. To become a smart shopper with purchasing power, a temporarily satisfied, repeat customer.

Real freedom—the kind I treasure—is the freedom to sit alone with my thoughts. To unplug the power cords running up and down my spine. The freedom to write in invisible ink things like screens are draining the light from our eyes.

Thoughts are nothing new. Almost everyone has them. I want deep thoughts. Nuanced thoughts. Impossible thoughts bigger than a breadbox. Secret thoughts no database holds.

I want a face my phone won’t recognize. To hide the light behind my eyes. I want intimate encounters with brilliant minds. Books on capes. Odes to meadows, row boats, weather balloons. I want to write things like contemplation is an endangered thesis.

Why The Moon Is A Wild Creature

Below is the inspiration for my latest poem, “The Moon Is a Wild Creature.” It’s a passage by Hayden Carruth from Reluctantly: Autobiographical Essays.

Hat tip to Jacqueline Winter Thomas and her Tumblr page, heteroglossia, where I found Carruth, sad in the Universe.

“I had always been aware that the Universe is sad; everything in it, animate or inanimate, the wild creatures, the stones, the stars, was enveloped in the great sadness, pervaded by it. Existence had no use. It was without end or reason. The most beautiful things in it, a flower or a song, as well as the most compelling, a desire or a thought, were pointless. So great a sorrow. And I knew that the only rest from my anxiety—for I had been trembling even in infancy—lay in acknowledging and absorbing this sadness.”

The Moon Is A Wild Creature

The moon is a wild creature.
Stars are stones in the sky.

I toss and turn in an empty river bed,
anxious for the rest of my life.

I read Sartre’s plays religiously,
just the funny ones, while pondering

simple things like black holes, folding
river beds, and God’s infinite field of vision.

My mind trembles.
The moon is still

a wild creature.
I can’t forgive myself

for all the pain
I put God through.

The moon resembles a wild creature.
Stones are fallen stars

asleep in a river bed
where I buried my dreams.

The moon is something else.
Stones and stars are different things

all together.
I count thirty-three shepherds

and a flock of non-believers
digging for answers

beyond my wildest dreams—
convinced my life unfolds

without me
in an infinite field

where God throws
thirty-three shepherds

and a flock of non-believers
down a black hole for trespassing.