Even absent minded philosophers need a day for rest and contemplation. One of the interesting tidbits I’ve discovered on the road to find out is how many fellow pilgrims have turned to poetry to play with shadows on the wall of the subconscious. Given that, my tastes in poetry are far ranging and definitely not down the well worn paths. I would also add that I like quite a bit of ‘bad’ poetry, verses that objectively aren’t exactly the pinnacle of form or presentation, but nonetheless provide clues and context to that jigsaw puzzle I like to take down from the shelf from time to time in order to project my own shadows.
I think we’ll kick off Poetry Sunday with Long Odds from that, once upon a time, ‘wickedest man in the word’, Aleister Crowley. Enjoy!
How many million galaxies there are
Who knows? and each has countless stars in it,
And each rolls through eternities afar
Beneath the threshold of the Infinite.
How is it that with all that space to roam
I should have found this mote that spins and leaps
In what unutterable sunlight, foam
Of what unfathomable starry deeps
Who knows!? And how this thousand million souls
And half a thousand million souls of earth
That swarm, all bound for unimagined goals,
All pioneers of death enrolled at birth,
How were they swept away before my sight,
That I might stand upon the single prick
Of infinite space and time as infinite,
Who knows? Yet here I stand, climacteric,
Having found you. Was it by fall of chance?
Then what a stake against what odds I have won!
Was it determined in God’s ordinance?
Then wondrous love and pity for His son!
Or was it part of an eternal law?
Then how ineffably beneficent!
Each thought excites an ecstasy of awe,
A rapture rending the mind’s firmament.
Infinity -yet you and I have met.
Eternity -yet hand in hand we run.
All odds that I should lose you or forget,
But, soul and spirit and body, we are one.
Is this the child of Chance, or Law, or Will?
Is None or All or One to thank for this?
It will not matter if thanksgiving fill
The endless empyrean with a kiss.”
Theme music: Pearl Jam All or None