The Chameleon’s Dish

At Breakfast
I interrogate objects
for their hidden meanings
suspecting that everything is
a sham, though not to
the point of paranoia
I forget to eat

By Lunchtime
the objects no longer appear
as an organized effort to
accomplish existence, more
a plate tectonics masquerading
as real estate, a hint of confession
in the chaos yet not enough
to justify a declaration of suchness
I am, by now, very hungry

In Midday
my need for food is sounding
peculiar song-like drones
but there’s silence as well
like a cosigner to the deed
conspiring with a growling gut
this calling, this appetite is making
arguments that seem capricious
and I wonder if the eating
might not cause more problems
than it solves

At Dinner Bell
my stomach is a gust of craven mara
despot of my being, and I yield
ladle out some stew
sitting in the sand upwind
of the cook fire, where
all these elaborations dissolve
under waves of taste sensation
I know I must realize precisely
this, or I’ll have to get up
and do it all over again
probably, tomorrow

Come Evening
a pine branch pops
in the embers and the sparks fly
up, absorbed like nourishment
into the hungry black
belly of night

Title is from Shakespeare, Hamlet III.2 :

CLAUDIUS
How fares our cousin Hamlet?

HAMLET
Excellent, i’ faith, of the chameleon’s dish. I eat the air,
promise-crammed. You cannot feed capons so.

Alternate title: A Day in the Life of a Neophyte Yogin

Gnawing

Understanding is alright
as far as prisons go, though

not understanding is better
than misunderstanding.

One foot follows the other.
Once movement is begun

it is difficult to stop,
hence, the strange treasure,

the halting dissonance of
“I don’t know.”


Knowing things obviously is fine and necessary. The insight of the East is that attachment to knowledge as the vehicle of truth is an error. We gnaw at what we know. We can never leave well enough alone. Is truth something that would submit to such nonsense? Consensus maybe, but consensus is just an agreement to stop arguing. To stop gnawing.

Photo: my old bird-feeder, nay rat-feeder.

Click Bait

the greatest architect of all
the tallest church spire built to date
points to the sky, the heavens’ loft
where nervous angels fidget, wait

come and rest your weary mind
let impulse self-propelled, abate
when all is said and done you still
jump up to go, you’re always late

when resting, things aren’t getting done
this thought that teases as we wait
there’s always something in the queue
a deadline looming, what’s the date?

always one thing more to do
or entertain, a great debate
to argue, or some plan you made
this train of thought and all its freight

but everything you’ve seen and heard
the flowers smelled, the apples ate
one vast and empty matrix full
of clicks on shiny mental bait


attachment and its object rise
together in a spacious state
and dissipate as one together
where early is the same as late

the gap between before and later
where everything appears innate
defies the yearning grip of mind
so how you like them apples, mate?