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After The Flood: Requiem for a Friend, Death Knell for a Dying Paradigm

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John desired a dialog between passion and putrefaction. He grasped the nearer an artist drew to expressing the impossible was made possible by exploring the realm of the possible. But, in addition: messing with things quotidian, breaking them apart, caressing, tormenting, tweaking "reconfiguring all available material into new forms"Like lover's, battling and entwined, whose love fuses the familiar and the alien, thus broadening the lives of both parties, by allowing them to become greater than the sum of their parts, art must challenge our verities; it must induce one to become more like one's essential self by the dissolution of safe, but soul-defying, habitual thinking.

An awareness of the ongoing (and exponentially increasing) catastrophic changes to the ecological balance of our besieged planet can serve the same end. Otherwise, one would risks being as devoid of character as those reality-adverse creatures -- monsters really -- possessed of inexplicable self-regard, who wield power in this age of hype and hubris. Conversely, one's suffering unites the psyche with the sorrows of the earth; teaches us that we are bound by its limits and laws. The knowledge grounds us in humility, by revealing that eternity is boundless, but we are not. Because eternity treats us with such callous disregard, we feel an affinity with other vulnerable things. One recognizes the commonality of suffering, thus one gains empathy.

Yes, death is implacable; the only thing close to matching death's tenacity is: The persistence of memory and the urgency of the soul to make every moment holy.

Often, in the locations where one's heart has been wounded by circumstance, thus seized by novel (even agonizing) apprehensions, as is the case in the sections of a forest that have been scoured by fire -- new life, nourished by ash, will grow. Have you ever walked through a field of bright wild flowers, risen from the charred ground, where a wild fire has blazed?

Over the last few years, many people close to me have died. A firestorm has run riot through my heart. In its wake, regions of my soul are vivid with eternity's wild flowers.

The view is breathtaking.

History is a story of bitter grace and pain-wrought wisdom: In this tale, we learn: Collective trust is a catastrophic misjudgment, made possible by its partner in crime, an artist of legerdemain, who goes by the moniker, Hope.

Once you have had your heart shattered into pieces, and even though time has mended it back together, because all of the shattered pieces and scattered shards can never be retrieved, you, as a result, will never be the same.

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And that is a propitious development, because room has been made within you for novelty and wisdom. The process allows for transformation, for one remains oneself, as, all the while, alien elements are merged with one's own uniqueness.

Accordingly, providence favors those whose faith has been shattered.

"A casual stroll through the lunatic asylum shows that faith does not prove anything." "-Friedrich Nietzsche

Life begins in mystery, what lies after life ends is unknowable -- and, in between, we experience constant bafflement. Yet, how exquisite the landscape is as it rolls by; what exquisite sorrow we yield by being part of it all.

My best friend was plucked from this tormented world. My father died last May"I'm buffeted, shattered by circumstance, but Angela, my dear wife, is more than half way through the second trimester of pregnancy. The event has engendered much soul-searching for a certain father-to-be i.e., wandering in awe and bewilderment through the landscape of his psyche, and forays, in his better moments, into the image-rich landscape of Animus Mundi.

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Art is merely artifice, if it is not sown from the soul's veritable soil. What is the song of the night bird sans the night? A thousand gradations of green comprise a swamp's canopy. The heart is just a pump, sans a loving/embattled (both are borne of libido) connection to the soul of the world.

My recent proximity to the realities of birth and death has forced me close to the living heart/inhuman abyss of the soul of the world. Yet amid this startling landscape the mind abides greater, even agonizing truths.

Climate chaos. Dying oceans. The degradation of U.S. corporate/militarist empire and the concomitant collapse of the global, neoliberal order. Our child will be born into a world where there will be a paradigm shift -- or there will come mass tragedy.

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http://www.philrockstroh.com/

Phil Rockstroh is a poet, lyricist and philosopher bard living in New York City. He may be contacted at: phil@philrockstroh.com. Visit Phil's website: http://philrockstroh.com/ or at FaceBook: http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100000711907499

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It would be a miserable slog to exist in a world d... by Phil Rockstroh on Friday, Nov 16, 2012 at 9:29:16 PM
Thank you for sharing. You have a way of making cl... by Elizabeth Hanson on Friday, Nov 16, 2012 at 11:38:24 PM
That's a great picture of the limo, Phil.   ... by Ned Lud on Saturday, Nov 17, 2012 at 5:59:05 AM
Phil, my condolences on the loss of your... by Richard Birdsong on Saturday, Nov 17, 2012 at 1:01:01 PM
Slowly I have become to accept many aspe... by Richard Birdsong on Saturday, Nov 17, 2012 at 1:05:36 PM
See Perspectives at http://www.aesopinstitute.org... by Mark Goldes on Saturday, Nov 17, 2012 at 1:23:23 PM
I believe Sandy to have been engineered through HA... by MITYOJAB on Saturday, Nov 17, 2012 at 9:22:21 PM