If you block it out, it will be as if it did not happen.
If you do not tell anyone, did it really happen?
If you do not call it by its name, was it really that at all?
Ignorance is bliss? No, denial is bliss.
You sit there
Absorbed in your newspapers, books and well-thought out opinions
You sigh and offer up commentary now and then
How the world would be better if it were this way and not that
And if people believed in your way and not that way
A storm is raging in your head and a tornado in your words
A hurricane in your pensive eyes bellow your thick, dark brows
You sit there
In a pensive state about the world
And I sit here
In a pensive state about my world.
Poetry is the music of words. It doesn’t just speak to our minds; it speaks to our souls.
The Herb Garden – By Stephen Gray
My mother before she died insisted I should have a herb garden
Something in her English soul
Amid rough South Africans
Called for the tenderness of mint
The old scent of lavender and sage
They arrived in soggy pages of The Star
With a spade taller than herself
She dug them into my backyard
Before I was ready for them
A cigarette tightly in her lips
Explaining chives made life worthwhile
That is how she died in her own
Garden of sweet remembrance
Very frail then with a bucket and spade
The size we children used for play
Always finding the sun too hot the soil
Far too dry for the gentler herbs
Today after the heart-stopping drought
My mother’s bed of lost spices
Has so flourished I have cut it back
And the mint is in the crevices of fingers
The sage under my very nails
And I remember her every gesture.
I see those people, clinging onto their cigarettes as if they are their lifelines. If they just take one more drag, inhale just a bit deeper, they might make it in their social food chain. They might succeed in adding more cement and bricks to the wall that barricades them all off from real human contact – as if there is no other way to talk to someone than asking for a lighter.
I see those arty folk. Puffing away in their cloud of smoke, as if that cloud is an extension of all their existential and philosophical thoughts. The smoke machine of their life. Chattering on about art, sex and politics as if that cigarette gives them authority. As if they can call themselves an artist just because they smoke. As if it is some kind of right of passage to the world of Van Gogh, Mozart and Stanislavsky.
“But it’s attractive, that element of self destruction.”
“Oh, darling. What could possibly be attractive about you disappearing in a puff of smoke?”
I wrote someone a letter and folded it up into a pretty origami figure. “But now I’ll have to unfold it and won’t have the figure anymore!” they cried.
“That’s the beauty of it. Doesn’t the beauty of a moment come from the fact that it is finite and won’t last forever? The beauty is in the here and now, and if you look away, you might miss it.”
And that is what I love about theatre. Films can be watched over and over again and they will be the same every time. Theatre can only be watched once, and every night it will take on a slightly different form.
And then it is gone.
And that is the beauty of fleeting moments.