(Same River, New Waters …)
Last year passed me the golden glove
You know, the one with a fist of iron.
She wanted no more of it. Nor I.
Those glossy, glittering, glistening,
shining products of a golden age
had lost their sheen and the age of
growth and worshipping at the alter of
God Demands Profit.* … is so last year.
Meanwhile, in the town, at Star Books,
We were reading over a tax-free coffee,
batting ideas on who could pay the bill
and how you make your money work,
if only we had some.
No longer bleeding from the lungs
but from now emptying wallets
consumption was her daily bread
and the disease that strangled
generations, who died of terminal debt,
the improper death of innocents.
Where is our misplaced virtue,
should we be held to account?
Maybe no more, and yet we must
pay due heed and plant a seed of hope,
to fight for nourishment forgone.
It might have been the will of the people,
but, for folk who step into the same river
ever newer waters flow …
© 2019 John Anstie
All rights reserved
[The core of this poem was influenced by the Greek philosopher, Heraclitus, who lived around the 5th century BCE and was well know for his thesis about ever-present change, that “no man ever steps in the same river twice”, which, in modern parlance, suggests that you can ‘reinvent’ the wheel. It is a subtle but, for me, a very compelling philosophical perspective.
It was first published in the The Bardo Group Beguine on 22nd April 2019]
* … GDP or ‘Gross Domestic Product’ is the standard statistic by which economic growth is measured.