Friday, February 22, 2013

Charles Taylor

Treatise on Time, or Laughter

Now and now and now and now and all I hear about
is now and I don’t have anything against now I’m in
the now right now and right now though it’s mighty
slippery the way it moves so fast into the past I guess
I can keep saying now and now and now and I’ll be
close to what the hippie guru said in his famous text
Be Here Now, and I’m into the heightened sense of
the moment right now yes now my right leg is cold
and the air filter in my bedroom is humming and it’s
a soft gray light that comes in the window because
it’s an overcast day looking like rain right now but
then things could change to sunny before you know
it we’ve got to give a place for the future even if the 
future does not live in the now and now and now that 
barely exists itself slipping away so fast so then it’s
into the future that we cast our hopes and dreams,
some mailbox must exist in that unknown where our
hopes and dreams are stored and then let’s give a
shout out to the past which is gone and doesn’t exist
either but we store some kind of shifting knowledge
of the past in our heads and some of these memories
give us great pleasure or sorrow and help define
just who we are I know my first memory it’s on
an airplane flying from Minneapolis to Chicago
in 1946 and I am three and my sister is one and
my mother says to buckle my seat belt and already
I’m rebellious I pretend to buckle the belt and then
the stewardess comes and gives my sister and I
a cookie and asks if I’d like to go up front to look
in the cockpit of the plane, my baby sister is in
my mother’s arms she’s too small so I go up to
look and the pilot and co-pilot take turns turning
and looking back at me and smiling and I saw
all the dials and through the windows lord all
that white of sky and by bringing the memory
back it is alive again in the now and now sliding
by why would I want to live all the time in the
now so fragile and quickly behind? Look I‘ve an
agile mind like an airplane and can fly into the
past, coast along in the changing present or fly
forward in a visionary dream into a future way
using my imagination where sometimes the sights 
are good over Barcelona and sometimes not so 
good so over Timbuktu and while I honor the now 
and now as she goes by like a jet stream I’m a damn 
good pilot, know not to stall out in any one these 
nonexistent human time constructs, for it seems to 
me that the now and the past and the future are 
equally nonexistent  and existent, illusionary and 
real, and I can deal with that and you can deal with 
that so let’s put away all this floozy and fuss and 
move on to brief enjoying life, dream will you of 
laughing in the future and hold that a moment
and then give a laugh now and now and recall 
all your sunlit or drunken fits of laughing past


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