E is for Everything
March 1, 2009
Mar 1, 2009
A blackout occurs and then we return to routine:
The inhumane blather on the screen.
The light glares in, illuminating each shadow.
“Do you feel it?” “Those sad mysteries?”
The bells are ringing, indicating
An original longing has been transformed
Into a pitch too high to hear.
Now an unsettling magician’s girl comes on stage
And plays herself. It is all very “upsetting”—
In Freudian terms. This vague echo
Of something unnamed.
This ruefully apocalyptic drama
Where the I is thrust into the Darwinian claw.
And now a bird, overheard, realizes its dream of flying.
Beneath it, the bridge, a passage
From contemplation hidden in a classic
“Love me?” Yes, he loves her. Lastly,
There is the redemptive conceit
That links the transfiguration journey
With this pomp, this sequence, this wedding
Of the eyes with their lens of miraculous glass.
The eyes that see the gesturing hand, an emphatic “Hey,
Teacher, leave those kids alone.”
The crowd shouts the lyrics back to the band.
And now, someone is saying, It’s amazing
That an Australian platypus is now a curio
On a shelf in a cabinet in a palace in Poland.
All the while, you’re wondering
About the man on the curb who waved at you.
As if he knew you.
As if you have been everywhere. As if you are existence.
While we have you...
...we need your help. Confronting the many challenges of COVID-19—from the medical to the economic, the social to the political—demands all the moral and deliberative clarity we can muster. In Thinking in a Pandemic, we’ve organized the latest arguments from doctors and epidemiologists, philosophers and economists, legal scholars and historians, activists and citizens, as they think not just through this moment but beyond it. While much remains uncertain, Boston Review’s responsibility to public reason is sure. That’s why you’ll never see a paywall or ads. It also means that we rely on you, our readers, for support. If you like what you read here, pledge your contribution to keep it free for everyone by making a tax-deductible donation.
March 01, 2009