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masks and mirrors

28 July 2010

the masques and mirrored balls
exchange and revolve in all
the various wonders and wilds
of the wide, wide world
though we have chucked and hurled
wonderment, mystery, sacrament
out the windows of modernity
replacing our cultural genius
with postmodern excrement
while laughing (is it the panic
of hysteria?) about the silliness
and superstition of the past,
and those poor sad fools
who still cling to their guns and religion,
while we eat the bread of mordor
watching people hunt ghosts
psychic investigators
and check the daily paper
for our horoscopes;
and we never realize that we wear the masks
so that we don’t have to bear the mirrors.

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4 Comments leave one →
  1. 28 July 2010 21:00

    Nigh on perfect, sir. Nigh on perfect.

    Take that back. Just plain perfect.

    • 29 July 2010 14:37

      Thanks very much for the high praise, Glynn. I was having a moment earlier this week; this whole poem grew out of those last two lines, which was inspired by my re-reading of A. A. Vaseliev’s History of the Byzantine Emire, Volume I (of all things). Byzantium always makes me whistful and suspicious of (post)modernity.

  2. 1 August 2010 22:01

    Its great.

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