A View of Metaphysics

2. Beginnings

When you pressed the "r" key to 
reply to my poetry, you engaged in
a mythos of what had always been,
what will now always be.  Your face
became embedded in the context of my 
landscape, a form molded in hot wax, 
a presence felt through cloth.  It
doesn't matter what language you used,
what method.  In the past, you would
have written a letter by hand, or sent
smoke signals to the neighboring tribe,
or painted a red figure on the cave wall.
In the future, you would have spoken to 
the house computer, or sent satellite
signals to my implant, or breathed 
through the ether.  Now, in every
formation, there exists your enigma.

1. Refraction

You see half a light, a sort of rounded
wedge, when in fact illumination bends
towards several directions at once, sometimes
wending like a flow.  I could place my hand 
in the dark vacated by this line, and you 
would think my hand blocked the path.  It is
not so — every event in your life led to
this moment and leads to others, this web
spun in swirls we can barely trace.  By 
travelling back and forth, the flickering 
deceives you, and you abandon faith by 
lingering in the gloom.  In the darkest
void, an infinite energy still remains.

4. Nature

Peace surrounds us when we join, in
acts so simple as sitting in the same 
room, or napping in bed, a meal shared 
in the evening.  As ever, we have been 
here, and will be here.  In the other 
realm, I know you through the ocean-
blown waves, which drown out the sound 
of human keening.  In the material world, 
we weep at the passing of bodies, the 
distance of footsteps, the loss of voices.
But your contours blend into mine, in 
this version of the grasslands with dotted 
trees.  We are two shades of the many 
green, which waver in the breeze.  You 
won't escape this shared existence by 
leaving, so many times.

12. Transcendence 

In Christianity, God exists as the Father, the Son,
and the Holy Spirit.  In biology, each cell makes
our body, yet they remain unaware of the whole.  In
Buddhism, we are reborn into the various parts of
this world: the cattle, the flies, the grass, and
even the stones.  In quantum mechanics, an atom is 
likely to be somewhere, but we cannot measure its 
exact location.  In Zoroastrianism, the world and 
all of its creations are composed of light and 
darkness.  In physics, matter is neither created 
nor destroyed; we exist as a form of energy.

3. Coupling 

In the mornings, when you wake early, I startle 
from sleep.  During the day, when you breathe in
smoke, I crave a cigarette.  At night, when you 
drink and eat, I feel a tickle in my throat.  If
you died, I would know when.

9. Divination

The four of pentacles, the want of
possessions, falls from the pack.  In 
this moment of desperation, the night 
before a holiday and battered from our 
inept conversation, I pray for guidance.
The cards gain a connection and lay out
in a Celtic spread.  Glancing at the 
positions, I note strength behind me, 
the reversed star as myself, and the 
final outcome: signals.  Signals — 
a card which says nothing about what 
how the cosmos will drift, which says
You'll find out, wait and learn.  I 
stare in amazement.  Of all the times 
I never cherished the outcome, now I
am clear as a crystal in the sun.  My
course of action lies in not knowing.

6. Directions

We are stranded, in a maze of dressing 
mirrors, shutters, gates, and glass panels.
You insist on following the logic of compass
directions, N-W-E-S.  By this method, you 
end up about ten turns from where we started,
but you are certain that we are one corner
from eternity.  Laughter almost nips me, but 
I know that I do not know where the exit is, or 
if we are meant to find one.  Looking closely,  
I notice the sinuous flux of the corridors,
shifting with every step.  Discovering an 
underlying pattern is harder than scanning
reflections.  Besides, familiar directions don't
work here, where one must learn to move N and S 
at the same time, W and E, and in directions 
that have no cardinal points.

5. Visions

Dreaming, we cross from stones into clouds.  
What you try to mask in the waking world 
becomes so apparent here, blood vessels
just under the skin.  You want eternal love,
but have no offerings to burn.  Awake, you
speak only half the truth, that you cannot
stay with me, empty-handed.  The distance 
grows; a small path from the front door
into the garden becomes a journey from a
pebbled path into a rock-strewn foreign
country.  In the metal works of a clock, 
you conceal the rest of the truth, the 
deep longing that makes you draw ice into
your organs.  Seeing existence in the sun
of this world damages inner sight, which we
regain when freed of our senses, in dreams.

8. Transduction

Experiments in laboratories, clinics, and
hospitals have tested for distant healing
effects, in which a healer prays for the 
well-being of another.  More than half of 
these studies have produced statistically 
significant results.  Because they employ 
double-blind standards, these results are 
not easily attributable to expectation, 
suggestion, or other such placebo effects.  
In addition, some of these studies have 
involved simpler life forms — bacteria, 
fungi, yeast, cells, seeds and plants —
which supposedly do not have sentience.

0. Affinities

These last two months since you left, I've
met more friends than in the last two years
we were together.  By chance, it seems, they 
write about my writing, or encounter me on
a train to San Francisco, or want to rent an
apartment for the summer.  It's reassuring
to think that when we were knifing each other 
with words over politics, ethics, philosophy, 
work, and anything deeper than the pastime,
that these strangers were reaching out to me.  
Timely, they drag me from the edges of schizo-
phrenia or from cutting skin with primitive
designs.  I imagine each as a center, drawing 
energy in circles, like an eddy in a stream.

10. Nonlocal

Two electrons, once in contact with one 
another, form an inextricable bond.  Although
separated by great distances, they still
flux in energy at the same time.  Physicists 
and other scientists have yet to formulate 
a decent explanation of this phenomenon.

7. Synchronicity

The house where I lived held the soul of
a dead poetess.  She made herself known
through my housemate's meeting with an old 
neighbor.  I read the journals she once
read, still kept by the fireplace, before
her husband shot her to death.  In the city
library, looking for her writings, I met an old
friend of hers, afraid of desire.  Newspapers
recorded every detail but her essence, how she
tended the roses in her gardens, how she watched 
sandpipers by the shore.  In a dream, I met her 
in an attic room, surrounded by paperbacks, ceramic
roses, and a stained glass lamp.  She glowed with 
generosity, a mother's spirit.  I wanted her 
unfinished work to be found and read, completed.
With her presence, I began searching in patience, 
layered with moments of intense magnetism.  The sea 
crashes on more than one shore at once, and through 
this, I know the presence of others.