Saturday, August 4, 2012

Xenophanes Clarifies

If current estimates are correct,
Several hundred million years ago
A few multicellular life forms
Tried fore and aft configurations,

Arranging a horizontal line
With an opening and an exit,
And thereby inventing heads and tails,
Futures to squirm to, pasts to squirt from,

Something to get to, something to leave,
The sacralization of hunger,
The frantic escape from filthy waste,
The distancing of brains and bottoms,

The distinctions of body and soul.
We live out the perspectives of worms,
Turning our heads, nodding at the light,
Dragging our carcasses behind us,

Whether we're bugs, birds, apes, or horses,
We all have entrances, then exits,
Opening acts, middles, conclusions.
If we all had gods, they'd look the same.

Mushrooms, amoebas, jellyfish, trees,
If such creatures imagined futures
As they radiate from their centers,
They might imagine spherical gods,

But what thing lacking architecture
To distance pure thoughts from grotesque ends,
Lacking hindquarters minds could disdain,
Could sever the sacred from profane?

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