In Sanity

Madness is a lack of mooring,

And one side of a coin. There’s a store in

An old dry town up north, where sanity sells

Like cheap television. And the bell

In the rundown church upwind still booms

With songs of concentrated earth, swoons

And submerges planes of reason

Beneath the doomy silent sea it leaves in

Its wake. It sings Wake Up: for tintinnabulation

Is a pretty word for neatly folded situations,

But this sound goes beyond slick dances

On polished surfaces—it’s the messy branches

Of real-world meaning woven together

Like the cracks in limestone beneath the heather,

The old bones that it hides.


The flipside of the coin isn’t soundness, which is just loud

But wisdom, which is madness with its silver head bowed,

Willing to ride

On the side

Of the waterfall carrying its ghost-ship.

Silence is a graceful place to skinny-dip,

And weathered admirals don’t lose sleep

Looking for the place to moor their fleet.

The stowaway sage opens his eyes wide,

dips his toes in the water, and enjoys the ride.


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