Tag Archives: philosphy

The Beetle and the Gnat

“The sand is very sandy,” said the beetle to the gnat.
“Well that’s a very silly thing, for everyone knows that,”
The gnat retorted to the beetle, who’d dug a beautiful hole
At the very very very edge
Where the ocean had taken hold
And filled the hole far sooner than he ever could have told.

The beetle stood so very still and then began to cry.
Seeing such great sadness, the gnat thought to reply,
“I’ll help you dig another, if you’ll only let me try.”
For the gnat was very sorry for the beetle’s predicament
When faced with miles of sand, just where should he begin?
Why, by the boardwalk! Yes of course, the gnat decided so
They took their shovels and their pails and began to heave and throw
The sand into the air, where it landed in a pile
And grew so tall it seemed to them to be a hundred miles.

It grew and grew until the sun disappeared from view
It grew and grew till moon and stars could not be seen, tis true!
So dig they did for several months
Till England’s shores were seen
And France was next
And Italy
So far away from home
That soon the two unhappy souls put down their pails and hoes.

“A hotdog I would like right now,” said the beetle to the gnat.
“Oh do put on some sauerkraut,” and with that the gnat did shout
“But they are far away, you know, on the ocean’s other side,
Where first we started shoveling,” and both sat down to cry.

“I wish the stars and moon would shine their brilliant, dazzling light,”
“I wish we’d never dug a hole before thinking what was right,
For had I thought ahead back then I’d never have proceeded
To dig so much and so obscure the light I cherished near us.”

The beetle did agree with this, and thought it could be righted
So in the night they blew and blew,
The sand fell left and right
And in a day or two or more
The stars began to shine
And soon the sun did light the dawn and with this they did smile.
“Let’s just hold hands, sit down again, and dream of piles of sand!”

©2016 Ellen Kostroff


weather

Snow, sleet, rain and wind–
tonight is New York City’s time of umbrage
and discontent, whipping through streets,
screaming stormy weather in its path,
thunderous winter loosing electricity from her skies.
Streets slick, people wearied from the pounding snow
slow their steps, lest they fall–
this night creeps on till morning light
brings promises of sunny skies.

Snow is black in this city of endless life,
as cars roll by, buses filled with diesel fuel,
trains and dogs and people crushing it to hardened masses
the pristine flakes, now turned into a city’s detritus.
Images of white are cast in the mind
or painted apartment walls, with childhood memories lost in dreams.
The city’s snow has always been black.

A century before
when coal belched forth and sooted streets enveloped her
people, suffocating all. Black then
black now.

Our city was never white
once the white man stepped on shore,
the Dutch first to claim the tip and strike her into streets of mud and foulness
from her bowels released.
Count plagues and fever many,
as sewage and garbage, human waste and trash polluted waterways,
illness felled the poor, the rich fared better but not more so
that all succumbed to dysentery’s toll,
and 3,500 die of cholera 200 years later
while city bankers run money instead of water
through New York’s streets.

Perhaps snow is white in New England,
or in the land of Robert Frost,
or in Wyoming or Ohio,
but not here.
City dirt covers streets and parks alike,
there is no remedy,
so many in so little space continues unabated the grayness
cast from sky to street.
Even a summer’s heat bears no brilliance.
So odd that sometimes sky blue bears radiance unforeseen
as in that day more than a decade past
when death in contrast made a city gray and black as night.


time past

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA
In the boarding house across the way
Youth and age had made their way
One begins, one ends
For both the years did terrify,
Hours torment their minds away
Unpleasant days filled with fear
One enraged, the other in tears.

Remember time
Remember me
Remember how life used to be
Before we felt that cruelty
Was common to our every day
And conversations turned that way.

How was it then
When we were young
How fanciful the days begun
Bright sun and moon, a crystal sky
Snow flakes that made you question why
The world did spin and spin and spin
And dance around your every whim.

It comes together, this season called
Winter, cold and uncommonly hard
To pass without sheer agony
Settling in this timeless world.
Leaves truth behind,
Behind it stays
While trudging, we make our way
Bent, broken, all from birth
So lacking to the core, our worth.


how can a woman be upset?

So, this is about
A woman friend of mine
Who said she was upset
At Obama’s reelection,
And I ask, why?

Romney was against abortion, but she did not think she should would take responsibility for a child of a women forced to conceive, no matter what the reason.
She did not care that he had no thoughts or comments on whether women should be paid equal pay for equal work.
He would privatize Social Security, and possibly leave millions of Americans destitute.
And health care? Well…

So, why was she upset?
She is not rich.
She depends, partially, upon her husband’s pension (they are both recently retired).
She is upset at the increasing property taxes and health care costs.

Is there someone who can enlighten me?

From your humble blogger, runningwithellen


the train left the station…

hummed to the tune of Cat Stevens “Peace Train”

Now I’ve been thinking lately, about the bad things to come
And though you don’t believe it, they’ve already begun.

Oh I’ve been crying lately, seeing the world come apart
And though you don’t believe, its already begun.

Cause in the night, coming slowly, comes disaster
Oh Romney, Obama, ride us, ride us into the ground again.

Now I’ve been thinking lately, about the bad things to come
And soon you will believe it, the worst is yet to come.

The bombs are sounding louder
The cries of hunger thunder round
People on the street
Destitute, you and me.

Everyone go for cover
Cover up, cover up

Write your will, your’s and your friends’ too
The end is gettin’ nearer, nearer to me and you.

Now to join the dead, six feet underground
Death is all around, in the air and in the ground.

The bombs are sounding louder
The cries of hunger
People on the street
Yes, destitute, me and you

Everyone get a shovel
Dig that earth today
Dig, dig, dig
Dig your grave away.


go quietly in the night

come join me
come join my tears
come see the world as it is.

come join me
come see despair in every corner of the world.
cry no more, for you are yet to join,
tears are ours,
tears are everywhere.

Come see pain first hand
technology will not prevent the torture at our hands.
We are inconsolable
We are replete with regret
as we dip into hell, past heaven’s gate.

Lord save me, though I do not believe.
But once, just once, prove you know the total despair
Wreaked on this earth from those who dare
to use your name to justify the horror
wrought
the suffering of generations to come.

Once I thought that being childless was sad, but now I know this is not so
That I did not endanger another
Nor contribute to the misery we are inclined to.
Look at me, my years unfolded
Long life I wished, one time I thought
Now I know, somewhere, not far, lies answers
To end now is the only answer
To stay a manifestation of a lie.


Sunny and Chérie

(hummed to the tune of ‘I got you Babe’)

They say that work won’t pay the rent
Your paycheck’s gone before it’s ever spent…
But you don’t care, although it’s true
‘Cause hustlin’s become a way of life for you…
Babe…
(da, da, da, da, da, da…)
It’s so true…
(da, da, da, da, da, da…)
This is you Babe…

Ten years ago you had a job
A wife and kids
A house and a big back yard..
Your life was hot, on easy street
Now you’re in the gutter, begging for somethin’ to eat…
Babe…
(da, da, da, da, da, da…)
It’s so true Babe…
(da, da, da, da, da, da…)
This is you Babe…

Down on your luck, clothes tattered and torn
The people pass by, leaving you ignored…
Cast adrift, your life flashes by
When friends were gay and family stood by your side…
Babe…
(da, da, da, da, da, da…)
It’s so true Babe…
(da, da, da, da, da, da…)
This is you Babe…
(da, da, da, da, da, da…)


Missing a Life

To say “miss” is to imply there once was, but I assure you there was not.
Growing up in a morass of mediocrity, accomplishments were relegated to others, and ours was a life marked by others’ needs, a turning of the lamp before dawn, a turning off at night. What happened between was of no consequence.
Nor did it provide satisfaction or mere contentment.
It was but a passing of time till sleep. Sleep, less and less each day, and time grows burdensome.
Fragments of contentment appear and disappear, so subtle that their remembrance lasts not long, insufficient to be recorded.
Which yesterday revealed a moment with the possibility of renewal, satisfaction, meaning, continuity? If there was, it is lost, intangible.


Woke Up…

Here I lay thinking

And you say I should

It’s 9:52

So misunderstood

But not by you

It’s myself out of touch.

Behind pillar and post the nightmares collect

Dream on you say

But soon I regret

The stomping, the yelling

The howls in the night

If I don’t wake up soon

I’ll have such a fright.

Well, life is just that

To hell and then back

Yet the sun also rises in spite of this fact.

 


Oh my, sigh…

Brought to tears

my heart does cheer

and thoughts of how you  appear

to mellow my response

in ways I may enhance

a quality of life

so often rife

with war and woe

though this I think you  know

my feelings are sincere

I must reply

I am not tied

by land or sea or sky

and will admit

with fitting wit

I’d rather live than die.


End of life

What happens when you lose all reasons for living, when existence seems meaningless?
Why does this happen?
Is it simply the result of a set of circumstances, or is it inherent in the person, something that was always there and only needed a trigger to be set free?
And when you begin to go over the things you want to put in order so that your death will not put others in distress over the things you may have left unattended?
And when you solidly believe that even though you maintain the ability to laugh and enjoy certain aspects of this world, that your existence is worthless and noncontributory to the betterment of the community, in such a way that you feel there will be no loss, but surely a gain for others, as you leave space and resources for others to make better use of?
And even when you formulate these feelings, a part of you remembers something you truly wanted to do, and already you want to postpone your end in order to accomplish this one thing.
The result, though, is no less sad, for the depression remains, and joy is only fragmentary.
Ending seems so more fulfilling than constant mediocrity.


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