Monday, February 24, 2020

" coheres all right
                               even if my notes do not cohere..."

(Ezra Pound, Canto CXVI)

Sunday, February 23, 2020

We can't decide
what is true;
we must discover it.

Justice is not
a discovery
but a decision.

We cannot know
of power. We must
defer to it
in our ignorance.

We cannot master
knowledge, but
refer to it
in our impotence.

Much of life is wasted
seeking things
that must be made,
doing things
that must be seen.

Wednesday, February 19, 2020

"when Americans stop being themselves they start behaving each other" (e.e. cummings)

We are governed
by narratives.
Our inquiries
are statistical.

We model
our behaviors.
We act
on stories.

Monday, February 17, 2020

Ideology is the appearance of ethnopathy in institutions.
Autopathy is the surface of ontology in intuition.

Saturday, February 15, 2020

The mistake is to think
about society. We're meant to feel
the people we are with.

Once made, the error
compounds. Emotion yields
to conceptual rigor,

incorrigible, passion
hides, bides its time, erupts
into the space of reason.

Now we experience
the material world, naked
before the very thing

we had so long believed
ourselves too rational to desire.
Hilarity ensues.

Friday, February 14, 2020

How is poetry possible?
How is philosophy necessary?

What can we feel?
What must we think?

Write the emotion,
write the concept, down.

Wednesday, February 12, 2020

"...all beauty is in the long run only fineness of truth..." (Walter Pater, Appreciations, p. 10)

"Justice is fairness." (John Rawls)

Justice is equity.
Truth is accuracy.
Beauty is precision.

Wednesday, February 05, 2020

Concepts are to space
as emotions to time.


conceptual frames,
emotional lapses.

Monday, February 03, 2020

Wisdom is not
a competence,
as love is not
          a suspicion.

Philosophy is the love
of wisdom.

Poetry is the hatred
of language.

There are lies
so subtle
you need poems
to expose.

There are iniquities
so brazen
you need philosophy
to accept.

Sunday, February 02, 2020

"Man is not a rational animal, he's a dull-witted animal who loves to torture. ... Poetry, by giving dignity and utterance to our distress, enables us to hope, makes compassion reasonable." (Irving Layton, 1959, foreword to A Red Carpet for the Sun, reprinted in Engagements, p. 83)

Note: reason : common sense :: passion : compassion.

Saturday, February 01, 2020

The philosopher studies

The poet masters

We know of their work
through their failures.