The Thinking Poet

 

Ericeira

Irresistibly each day

I found myself

Drawn towards the sea,

There to gaze in meditative awe

Amidst the stoic rocks,

Rapt as a child

In its Eden innocence.

 

Until one day,

More in pensive mood than sea-dream,

My restive voice enquired;

“Why mingle thus with deaf-mute stone

In silent communion.

What are your thoughts,

And what your purpose here?”

 

And in an instant,

Between the question and its comprehension,

The waters flooded my senses,

And I perceived

The heaped-up, angry whiteness

Scudding menacingly

Towards the wave-scourged rock;

I felt the blow at impact;

I smelt the flying spume.

 

Yet with perceptual consciousness awakened,

The dream had fled.

And now fully aroused,

That same pestering voice

Arrested the senses in their wild delight,

Ever demanding: “What, why, how?”

Until the blighting touch of inquisition

Had killed all,

And only the gibbering voice remained

To mock me as I mourned.

 

And as I mourned,

The muttering ceased.

And in the sober aftermath of loss

Came realization, swift as lightning flash;

This is the way we kill our God!

Butcher beauty, murder love!

This is the way we live in death,

Torture truth with every breath.

Rejecting silent receptivity,

We flounder in a false proclivity.

 

And tenderly

The all enveloping sea and sky

Once more possessed me.

 

May 1965