27 Nov 2014

I thought of how a machine might love. Like a flurry of processes all relating to one subject, which they all flutter around, and are about, and which the concentration of its processing power cannot seem to have enough of this subject, that which courses through its mechanical synapses. And I wonder if that feeling of love that we have — if the machine did not feel it like we do, couldn’t it still be love? For is it not really that the feeling of love is the least of it, in these final analyses? For I cannot imagine that all that love is is a feeling that one is in love — like I imagine that it is as an incandescent light, which gives off light and warmth, and the light is the point, and if one felt not the warmth of it, the point would still be there. And I imagine that the machine who could love, that he might feel something completely different, completely alien to what we do. Yet in my believing, love is love, and love would still be love, even among such aliens: that a heart can come in any shape.

posted by John H. Doe @ 11:04 pm

20 Nov 2014

the sign that is not a sign
a muted and ordinary hiccup of fate
(in perfect alignment, the stars begin to fall)
visions just outside my peripheral optics
where destiny builds the instants
(there is no conspiracy, but the madness is real)
a past that tips off the edge of memory
the void holds secrets perfectly
(and here i am at the end, and snow is everywhere)

posted by John H. Doe @ 2:22 pm

18 Nov 2014

If you read carefully, Genesis said that the Earth was formless and void, and what I found that this meant was that before all things existed was a primordial chaos. To the Babylonians, this was symbolized by the monster Tiamat. In the Old Testament, the beast of that chaos was named Rahab. In the old myths, the progenitor god slays the beast of the chaos and from the body is formed the world that is. We can see that myths themselves change, but there seems to be a deep memory that we share of the old things of the world.

posted by John H. Doe @ 1:29 am

9 Nov 2014

What was before this? What was before the beginning? It comes not at first thought—we usually focus on what is presented, from the beginning on. But upon the introspection, we wonder what happened before it all happened. We find even before the original beginning, in fact, before “In the beginning,” it turns out there was not nothing, not even way back there; not empty was the void at all—not completely. I had thought that, too, you know, that it was creation ex nihilo: out of nothing. When I did hear what had been there, it opened some doors of thought, what such circumstance might have spelled.

posted by John H. Doe @ 2:34 am

28 Oct 2014

there is a song written of forgotten notes
sung by silence, when the trees are still
unmistakably haunting as it slips away
as time drives you on past the moment
to live life as if we never knew the secret
yet holding a hope strange with simplicity
breathing in breezes, a rustling of the trees

posted by John H. Doe @ 12:48 am

17 Oct 2014

too long trying to promote the myth of myself, i see
the arguments are only numbers, but that is all that is left of the world
i have lived beyond where the dna yelled to stop
overstayed the desire of the world to pin me down with apologies
we should spend all of our hours in mourning
but there are things to do, each a small forgetting of our humanity
as we rather than to measure the proper sadness
the abyss we stare down cannot be as deep as the memory of eden
the night not so dark that we can imagine it infinity
the sum total of our forgetting is an arbitrary zero, the vague nothing
dreams emerge from a different kind of numbness
and the myth of me is a poem writ of such haze, how i cracked my halo
as infinities i imagine touch at the surface of night
the dream shifts planes and leaves me earthbound once again, here
to forget good and evil like the dream came true
i mend my busted halo in the pools of sorrow, the tears of night, alone

posted by John H. Doe @ 5:06 am

10 Oct 2014

the madness has a memory
beware the quiet
light flutters at the edges of my vision
and i let the curse feed my fire
like a silent delirium will i pray
outwardly to despair, to play a different game
inwardly to hold on, a wingèd strength
aesthetics string delicately together
where the art has stretched out its meaning to harden
to leave roses in our wake…
holy fire burns me, the ecstatic flames
love will heal in this way what cannot be mended
i am not mad:
eyes that have ranged far countries return only halfway
and the pain is a blindness
how can they not stare?
for we are all fearfully and wonderfully made
to pierce into the mystery with dagger eyes
to find what we had had all along
the curse lost in the light
the doom lost in futures past
beware the quiet
the madness has a memory

posted by John H. Doe @ 12:56 pm

5 Oct 2014

memories are light
running through sunlight dappled days
a cushion of youth spilling everywhere
memories are heavy
remembering the grace of someone
whose face no longer looks out into the day
night comes easy
the scattering of cricketsong outlying
the smell of meat basted in tangy summer
night comes hard
the years of wanderlust supressed, a lifetime
the desire that would never know light
and there is life
the experience of change of dark and light
memory keeping track where you got hurt
and here is life
sometimes it never seems to begin
but to know hard that it has an end

posted by John H. Doe @ 7:44 pm

29 Sep 2014

i sense love distant
like the thaw of snow melt trickles
high in the mountain morn
i am found: this is love
upon the precipice of a dream
the child of stars crossing
the light undying
i am a sentinel of fortune
as dreams ascend with the dawn
made of earth and heaven
and a quiet to wash me white
snow everywhere
i walk through the memories of places
by candlelight flickering lonely
imaginary the distances
the song of myself inhales
i have not come to slip through cracks
light has pierced my eyes
destiny lingers
death weary of my meddling
the mirror knows me, so says his eyes
death chokes on confetti
for am i won from darkness
what flows through every last thing
i kiss hello
sometimes the wind calls me by name
small as i am, but cozy
i have measured the sky with my hands
and beyond, my third home
as i tease the threads of fate
the candle which lasted the storm
we blow out the flame, for dawn is here

posted by John H. Doe @ 1:36 pm

21 Sep 2014

the numbers do not care
we could be saving lives, we could be killing them all
they only stare back as hollow figurines
blind to what they themselves say
some will strain to find the meaning in you
we dare not ignore you, not when you speak for yourself
nor hide what you show

posted by John H. Doe @ 5:50 pm

15 Sep 2014

Night has fallen where it might, and I am a dream away from eternal things. My desire for flight has made me struggle against gravity all this time; and it has borne fruit in the wings I have sought to create. I have skirted the edge of the impossible where I have travelled, not willing to see that I should fail for the farness of my reaching. Give thanks to God, o my soul, for He has set a fire in my heart that weathers the torrents of the storm, that keeps me pressing on when hope is at its thinnest. This is life: that one sees the magic in what the world can achieve, wonder at dreams of the primordial light and shine the light upon all that is, do his best at whatever comes. Always remember from where you have come. It has made you what you are.

posted by John H. Doe @ 11:18 pm

6 Sep 2014

strange what we remember, a confetti of images
islands of mundane wonders wandering through our cognitive pools
stray memories of what we never were, time and worlds away

posted by John H. Doe @ 11:07 pm

2 Sep 2014

A Sufi story tells us, “A man who had studied much in the schools of wisdom finally died in the fullness of time and found himself at the gates of eternity. An angel of light approached him and said, ‘Go no further, O mortal, until you have proven to me your worthiness to enter into Paradise!’.

“But the man answered, ‘Just a minute now — first of all, can you prove to me that this is the real heaven and not just some whimsical fantasy of my disordered mind undergoing death?’

“Before the discomfited angel could reply, a voice from inside the gates shouted, ‘Let him in — he’s one of us!’”

posted by John H. Doe @ 4:12 am

26 Aug 2014

This Is Just to Say

I hate the way
we left things

I did not mean
what I said,
I was so angry

and you
are just so

(forgive me, William Carlos Williams)

posted by John H. Doe @ 12:01 pm

18 Aug 2014

posted by John H. Doe @ 12:58 pm

12 Aug 2014

Very few people in the world would care to listen to the real defense of their own characters. The real defense, the defense which belongs to the Day of Judgment, would make such damaging admissions, would clear away so many artificial virtues, would tell such tragedies of weakness and failure, that a man would sooner be misunderstood and censured by the world than exposed to that awful and merciless eulogy.

 - Gilbert Keith Chesterton

Make me what Thou wouldst have me. I bargain for nothing. I make no terms. I seek for no previous information whither Thou art taking me. I will be what Thou wilt make me, and all that Thou wilt make me. I say not, I will follow Thee whithersoever Thou goest, for I am weak, but I give myself to Thee, to lead me anywhither.

 - John Henry Newman

... They haled him, trembling, to the Judgment Seat.

“O Lord, behold the man who made the nails that pierced Thy feet!”

The Master laid a thin, scarred hand upon the shame-bowed head.

“They were good nails,” he said…

 - Kenneth W. Porter

posted by John H. Doe @ 4:06 pm

6 Aug 2014

Last night I dined with afterimages
of angels, in whose minds
I was the quotient of their imaginations.
We were served emotions by maids
whose faces were mirrors, and we
ate until only distance remained.
The flavor of despair was akin
to blood, like iron ground into nothing,
only a tingle that something once was.
Solitude tasted of a star grown cold,
reminded me of the air of Autumn
where the leaves had all fallen,
complete, yet yearning. Anger
was the strongest rum pressure
could distill, it churned in my belly
like a violent wave disbelieving its
confinement. And our dessert was joy,
yellow sprouts of light which had
the savor of a tickle, and was gone
before the tongue had finished
tasting. Afterwards, the Book of Life
was opened, and every name
written therein danced ethereally
above the pages and then rained
into my soul to give me new breath.
The air, now heavy with promises,
folded, again and again and again and
again, until finally, being nothing,
everything was as the moment
before creation, empty and perfect.

posted by John H. Doe @ 1:21 am

28 Jul 2014

In [Tolkien’s] “Ainulindalë”, Ilúvatar, who is God, creates heavenly beings known as the Ainur, and they commence to forming all that is by way of holy music. But the greatest of the Ainur, Melkor, laid into the ground of creation his own themes, not those purposed by Ilúvatar. Of course, Melkor’s musics were not like those of Ilúvatar: one could say that they were like of discord, and not of harmony, like the others. But so being, one might possibly say all that was wrong with the world came from the themes of Melkor. And when I considered that, I thought to myself how interesting it would be if that were true of this, our world, that an evil force were at the heart of all the world’s faults, its calamities. But as with many things that make perfect sense, I dismissed the notion offhand.

What if, though? What if angels had a hand in the way that things are? In the book of Job, God relates that the sons of God (angels) rejoiced in the creation of the world — so they were definitely around at the time. What if, then? What if the Lucifer myth is true, and the greatest of the angels rebelled, swelled up with pride, and caused “a third of the stars” to be fallen with him? A third of all the angels? The mechanisms of Heaven made so things bent that far to the will of the Devil, the invention of pain, and ruin any idea of fair play being evenly distributed throughout the world? To cause the world to be a place for injustice to be, if not the rule, the theme? This would be what it meant to be not just an angel of God, but the best and the brightest: read, most powerful of all the Heavenly host. It would be a big deal.

posted by John H. Doe @ 9:27 pm

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