This is the official blog of Northern Arizona slam poet Christopher Fox Graham. Begun in 2002, and transferred to blogspot in 2006, FoxTheBlog has recorded more than 423,000 hits since 2009. This blog cover's Graham's poetry, the Arizona poetry slam community and offers tips for slam poets from sources around the Internet. Read CFG's full biography here. Looking for just that one poem? You know the one ... click here to find it.

Monday, November 29, 2004

Sight

For Ronny Kraft

the problem with trying to see the world of the 21st century

is that it’s gotten so complicated, so enormous
that in order to compensate
we’ve condensed, concentrated, consolidated, cultivated, confined, refined,
abridged, purified, and focused our surroundings
to the point that we’re not sure if what we see is reality anymore
we’ve put contact lenses on our world view
without realizing that any clarification, by design,
produces a distortion
but we weren’t ready for one on this scale
and the human race has been at this so long
we’ve forgotten what reality looked like when we started
when we turned open savannahs into urban jungles
we stopped adapting nature to fit us
we turned other species into products and figured out how to exterminate the
competition because capitalism isn’t an economic policy- it’s genetic
we cut up the landscape and sold in pieces to the suburbs
we spread 18-hole golf courses across prime real estate
and prosecuted children for trespassing when they built castles in sandtraps
we built million-dollar mansions in the shadow of red rocks so we could get
away from it all
unfortunately, it came with us
because we can’t escape our history

we’ve spent so much time trying to figure out what makes human beings tick
that we’ve relegated human nature
to a mixture of chemistry, physiology, numerology, astrology, biology,
cosmology, psychology, and neurology
to the point that we accepted ourselves as nothing more than the sum of our
parts
but we’re more than “-ologies”
we’re human

but when we’re locked in a jihad over which group has more right to occupy a
piece of Middle Eastern real estate
or we’re stuck with the dogma or born-again apathy teaching us to love a name
2000 years dead rather than love each other
or we have to endure the pretentions of self-righteous New Age shamans selling
reinvented spirituality and self-help books then you can see why it’s so easy
to give up hope

now we’re waging a war of attrition where we’re the enemy
and we’ve been on the losing side for a long, long, long time
because we’ve given up hope that we’re still worth saving

it’s not that we lost our purpose
it’s just that we forgot we had to find one
without help from Oprah’s Book Club or a made for TV movie

but here, now, we can end this civil war
by refusing to settle for this restructured reality
we can take out these contact lenses we’ve used to see
rejoin Nature as a member, not it’s master
we can tear down the illusions we’ve constructed to make us forget
that race, creed, color, nationality, ethnicity, belief, sex, age, and
orientation
doesn’t matter when we’re dead
because we’re all just ashes and dust renting space
we can remember that knowing what we are
doesn’t matter a damn
but knowing who we are while we’re here
is a purpose always worth dying for

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