Mar 19
poem, opinion challenge: My Generation

Re: “My Generation”

[This poem is in response to "My Generation" by Shreyber]

I think that there are a few of us
Who still worship the sun
And some who worship 
The glorious pastel smile of the dusk
With more fervent devotion
Than the leaf peepers 
Who travel thousands of miles
Each autumn
To see the leaves turn,
A final fireworks
Before the night and sleep of winter.
They come thousands of miles
To see change, ebullient change.
Those of of us who still worship the sun 
And the dusk,
We revere the neon tears of the sun.
We cry, but we know that after the winter and mud
Comes spring 
And maple syrup
After the night and the morning
Comes dawn
And then who knows what?

I think we all have the power to remember
What Dorothy sang about tumbling raindrops
And rainbow highways from heaven

Despite the cynicism and nihilism 
Of our generation,
We still have the power to dream

We still watch Thomas the Tank Engine
Because we remember
When we wished we could be an engine, too

When we mourn the loss of our innocence,
We’re really mourning the loss of our light:
Our inability to love the dusk and look forward
To morning

Where did that time go?
Our thoughts frantically pace back and forth 
At the edges of the chasm
We let society create within us.

We do not have small dreams.
I’ve seen the smallest of dreamers
Unfold worlds upon worlds from the pages of their notebook.
They did not know what it is to be loved
Or how to accept love when they finally found it,
But one glance at their sketchbook
And its graphite webs more intricate than the finest gossamer,
You’d know that this was only the beginning of their imagination.

Yes, we feel like failures. 
I think that, more than anything,
We feel we have failed ourselves.
Why didn’t we grow up to be 
The clay-faced model of a train
That we longed to be when we were younger
We ask ourselves.
Why did we have to become a teenager
And go to stupid high school
Which Disney told us was utopia
When they were actually talking about middle school?

The world is having an identity crisis.
We are having an identity crisis.
The two events coincide so perfectly
As if all the planets aligned, 
One eclipsing another
While being eclipsed.
We are so blinded by the shadowing of the sun
And the shadowing of ourselves
That we cannot see the beauty in the change,
The beauty in the transition.

Ezra Pound
(The crazy old fascist who brought all the great poets of his time
Out from obscurity 
And into the light of the world: 
Ernest Hemingway, Elizabeth Bishop, T.S. Eliot—
You were a genius 
Who wanted to be known? 
Know Ezra.)
He wrote a long poem,
Reread it,
And cut it by half.
Then he cut it by half again.
And again,
Sculpting and whittling
Forty pages,
Forty tons of poetic marble,
Into two lines.

“The apparition of these faces in the crowd:
Petals on a wet, black bough.”

It’s not even a complete sentence.
Pound called it an equation.

And that is what we are.
We are an equation in the making.

The word is unfair and unjust.
Our generation’s greatest strength?
We see that.

And our small dreams
Are billboards we put up
To shadow our real dreams
Which we fear are too beautiful
To survive in the world we live in.

Take a look around you.
Breathe in; 
then out.
You’re alive!
Isn’t that wonderful?
Isn’t that enough?

Strange that you worship the change-bringers
And cannot worship the change itself.

We have not failed to change the world.
The dusk is here,
And it is also a dawn.
Isn’t that beautiful?
Look, the sun sets and ascends simultaneously! 
And it will be our generation
Who must lead our world
From dawn and dusk into day.

We are no small dreamers
If we remember the red leaves of autumn
And the blossoms of spring.

Crazy Pound knew
That two sentences
Is more than enough
To make change.

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