Sunday, November 30, 2008

To be or not to be

Hamlet's well-known soliloquy has been going through my mind right now.

Lately, I've been in this "not to be" mindset -- where I'd rather just hide in my room and 'dream' so as to avoid the prickings [sic] life brings. In this, there is really no life. But in no life, there is no pain. Yet in no life, there is no joy.

This all reminds me of something I wrote about a year ago:
The Lake Made - Haiku Enchaîné*

The lake an honest maid?
Her waters taste sweet save held
Yet held is “the way”

To swim the remorse
Or, forbid, to tilt and drink
‘Tis shallowed hell

Still reflections yield,
In the cuppèd hand, thus whole
Whose tears its own wane

Had I words, I’d fight
Sing to light the hidden know
Beyond cupping hands

Alas, I but drown
In the wisping waters here
Naught, my maid to hold

Would I that death rise
Bury sight, this tortured mute
In deafening sting

Oh that I would float
On rocking waves as dead men,
They who do not drown

They who do not swim
Nor do they drink from the cup
But on lake do float

Forever to grin
Though their hands hold naught but lake
They know contentment

They follow no herd
But the one wherewith they fly
Guided by the tides

To and fro to glide
Knowing not passing of time
But alone to dream

There’s no need to speak
As deadmen need not their tongues
Oh that I were they

Yet in them no soul
They are dead and have been torn
From the two natures

And shells are these men
Who, though they know the lake maid,
Cannot feel her touch

Contentment they know
But in contentment no joy
And soon dead men sink

In this twisted pool
Where, at climax, one’s heart bleeds
For relief from storm

But in lake remains
A chance for peace though bitter
Therein lies the way

*Haiku Enchaîné (or Chained Haiku) is a form of poetry I originated with the presented poem. The form is composed of 17 independent haiku chained together to complete one major thought which thought is composed of three supporting but independent sub-thoughts. The first sub-thought is composed within the first five haiku; the second within the middle seven haiku; and the third within the last five haiku.

each haiku should complete one thought, the first five haiku should complete one thought, the middle seven haiku should complete one thought, and the final five haiku should complete one thought -- all of which thoughts contribute to the ultimate thought of the entire haiku enchaîné.

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