Why does the heart get all the credit for love?
By so-called affairs of the heart,
that most storied of organs is not unduly inconvenienced.
now faster, now slower,
that is all, its task ever unvaried.
But the brain.
The brain is swarmed
by a scream of consciousness,
the amount of work that lands on its desk
swollen by an epidemic of incoming data
as body-wide receptors caffeinated by intimations of love
report frequent sightings of
unexampled beauty followed by euphoric contacts.
Every signal, real or illusory, is taken into custody and interrogated
to determine its authenticity or duplicity.
Every word is a code that needs to be deciphered with a
clear-eyed detachment it can no longer muster.
Every look is transferred to the left side
for facial-contextual-inferential analysis but often hijacked by the right
for the purpose of aesthetic appreciation.
Every scent is identified and catalogued with
a perfumer's olfactory precision.
There are hints to catch,
spats to be postmortemed,
crucial dates to be inoculated against amnesia,
preferences to be recorded, compared, grafted,
model answers to catch-22 questions drafted,
declarations of adoring allegiance crafted.
The subject’s mind is apparently required to be read,
two sets of past, present, future to be crossbred,
blindness to other females pled.
There are virtues to exaggerate to divine proportions,
flaws to modify to virtues with willful distortions,
desires to mollify by counseling patience,
thoughts to be felt,
feelings to be thought,
vertigo to be fought.
Still the to-do list grows,
the repairing of an attention that no longer spans,
the mistaking of what happens to millions of others daily
as a unique personal miracle,
the confusing of being loved with being special,
the projecting of an untested passion into an eternity,
the steadying of feet that has taken to walking on air,
the murdering of ballads meant to be trilled,
and the admonishing
of that nonchalantly speeding heart
to be still.
Copyright © Bernard Chan | Year Posted 2018