Monday, January 13, 2020

Cousin in the Moon

The most terrible magic,
Most mysterious wonder,
Most unacceptable truth,
Is to see that this world is

Just exactly as it seems,
While we, among its children,
Cannot help imagining
And wanting it otherwise,

A wanting that is a part
Of the exact way things are,
This way we imagine changed
Into something never was.

All the evidence suggests
That prior to the first word
The world was thick and gorgeous,
So why do we speak of this?

Animal human recall,
Even with language, stretches
Five generations at best.
Words are the ghosts of the rest.

Human fantasies are just
More ways the world produces
Differences within itself,
Contradicting selves of self.

From those who suffered the most
The fewest of us descend.
The ancestors we condemn—
We still look the most like them.

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