Yesterday is History,
'Tis so far away --
Yesterday is Poetry --
'Tis Philosophy --
Yesterday is mystery --
Where it is Today
While we shrewdly speculate
Flutter both away
Here is my philosophy:
Everything changes (the word "everything"
has just changed as the
word "change" has: it now
means "no change") so
quickly that it literally surpasses my belief,
charges right past it
like some of the giant
ideas in this area.
I had no beginning and I shall have
no end: the beam of light
stretches out before and behind
and I cook the vegetables
for a few minutes only,
the fewer the better.
Here is my
philosophy: butter and serve.
The rainbow never tells me
That gust and storm are by,
Yet is she more convincing
My flowers turn from Forums --
Yet eloquent declare
What Cato couldn't prove me
Except the birds were here!
I am a grave poetic hen
That lays poetic eggs
And to enhance my temperament
A little quiet begs.
We make the yolk philosophy,
True beauty the albumen.
And then gum on a shell of form
To make the screed sound human.
If I should labor through daylight and dark,
Consecrate, valorous, serious, true,
Then on the world I may blazon my mark;
And what if I don't, and what if I do?
When I was young and bold and strong,
Oh, right was right, and wrong was wrong!
My plume on high, my flag unfurled,
I rode away to right the world.
"Come out, you dogs, and fight!" said I,
And wept there was but once to die.
But I am old; and good and bad
Are woven in a crazy plaid.
I sit and say, "The world is so;
And he is wise who lets it go.
A battle lost, a battle won-
The difference is small, my son.
Inertia rides and riddles me;
The which is called Philosophy.
Slaves of vain wisdom and philosophy,
Who toil at Being and Nonentity,
Parching your brains till they are like dry grapes,
Be wise in time, and drink grape-juice, like me!
Ella Wheeler Wilcox
At morn the wise man walked abroad,
Proud with the learning of great fools.
He laughed and said, ‘There is no God –
‘Tis force creates, ‘tis reason rules.
Meek with the wisdom of great faith,
At night he knelt while angels smiled,
And wept and cried with anguished breath,
‘Jehovah, God, save Thou my child.
Vain study of philosophy eschew!
Rather let tangled curls attract your view;
And shed the bottle's life-blood in your cup,
Or e'er death shed your blood, and feast on you.
In philosophy, if you are an Aristotle or a Bouzourdj-mehr;
in power, if you are some Roman emperor or some
potentate of China, drink ever, drink wine from the cup
of Djem, for the end of all is the tomb. Oh! though you
are Bahram himself, the coffin is your last sojourn.