A Platonistic poetic homage to the foundations of the True West, and to The Second Coming by W.B.Yeats. Read The Second Coming here: http://www.poetryfoundation.org/poem/172062 Or see a youtube video animation (a little disconcerting) of a photo of the aged Yeats dramatically reading his own poem:
I have been working on a painting of trip we made to Paris in 2015 (I’ll put an image up here when it’s ‘done’), and as is my custom now (see my www.altarsofart.com) I was also planning a text of silver or copper embossed letters to go around the frame. I needed a poem to draw on for this, and added to my recent thoughts on the True West and its declining influence in the real-world culture of the free West, it pushed me to the unusual – for me – extremity of writing poetry! I will no doubt keep worrying over the wording for a long time, but may not manage to improve it much, so here it is, as is. The last stanza has a reference to the Jewel of Knowledge in my epic the Apples of Aeden (vol I available free here: https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/243499):
Picked apart and picked apart by the blind watchmen
Stone by stone, line upon line the Western wall is crowbarred from within,
The foundations turn to clay, the cornerstone is discarded,
And through the gaps the godless void is seeping, invoked in dirges to the blackstar,
The deathstar, sent by a matricidal empire, heralded by nihilists and jaded hedonists
To loose a blood-dimmed satanic tide in every world.
Surely some truth still hides deep
Beyond the reach of the deconstructive bulldozers and the deathmetal din?
Surely Damien’s demonic blowflies will not have the last word,
Surely there will be an answer from the Deep?
The Deep! Hardly are those words mocked by shallow keypads
When a vast metaphor from the antique West
Transports me down beneath the ruins,
Somewhere under Athens, beneath the Parthenon’s golden ratios.
And look! A single candle still burns in Plato’s cave, in caverns measureless to empirical man.
But the blind watchmen have been there before me,
The ancient writing is chiseled off the wall.
Now darkness falls as atavistic hands, filled with a passionate intensity,
Scrawl savage ultimatums to the prisoners, who bargain for their heads
While our best remaining watchmen vacillate in trembling silence and trawl the web for clues.
But in Paris in the spring beneath the mathematical tower
Some still hold up the secret jewel of knowledge to the tree of life
as the true Isis stands resurrected for the motherless,
the balance is restored, the solipsistic spell is answered and refuted,
And the platonic sun rises also over Cantor’s paradise
Rejoicing like Zarathustra, endlessly bestowing.
- Peter Harris, 16.1.16
If the poem (or parts of it) inspire, do share this online. For the True West and those who seek it still…