Be water now
Be as water now, you, who fear the change. Rain heavy on the ocean. You, once buoyed by air, vaporous, skating across skies, grew too ripe. Do not cling to your lightness. Let your own weight pull you down from the heavens. Mourn not the fall. Delight in the thick dance of your descending, like an angel incarnating, out of love for the touchable earth. Let the ground feel you.
I will not look away
On the road a dying gala. Wing torn, bent backwards, red flesh showing, white bone. It slept, but not in the sleep of death yet. I thought of moving its delicate body, as it lay unmoving— to take it out of the path of racing conquerors blackening red earth. But I didn't know how to pick it up gently, and as a truck passed, it woke, lifted its head and cried out into the sky! The squawks faded, but still its eyes gazed. Was it numb to the pain or feeling fire and needles? How long had it been dying? I could do nothing. But I would not look away. I sat with it as its heart beat slow. I will not look away from suffering. I could not look away. I will not look away. Seeing dying, painful dying, is so much more alive, heart rending, present, life beating, ebbing, flowing, dissolving— seeing dying is so much more than seeing death. My heart tore in sympathy with its bloody flesh.
©2022 Mitchell Stirzaker
All Rights Reserved
…is a poet and philosopher based in Sydney, Australia. He is inspired by great works from history, from the poetic philosophy of Epicureans, to the suttas of Buddhists, and the existential writings of the 19th and 20th centuries. He seeks to express both various existential struggles and visions of paths to harmony between people situated differently in the world, and between human self and more than human world.