The Book of a Thousand Eyes [To achieve reality]
To achieve reality (where objects thrive on people's passions), enormous effort and continuous social interactions are required, and I can't get started without you. Not here—over there's a better place to begin a funny story. History with its dead all shot through with regularities in the woods and following what looks like a cow-path is part of a creature's sexual magic. Its recorded words now are just a small memento meant to trigger memories which will give us energy when the right time comes. Every afternoon high in a tree the forest vagabond naps while time hangs like a swarm of midges, trembling on. It might be female but it has a phallus's tendency to jump up. How lonely it is to think that I can only think what I think even while he is thinking—our thinking just our respective working body's hum. And while the warlords of Mycenae were storming Troy the foundations of their own societies were crumbling, too.
From The Book of a Thousand Eyes by Lyn Hejinian, published by Omnidawn. Copyright © 2012 by Lyn Hejinian. Used by permission. All rights reserved.
Lyn Hejinian was born in the San Francisco Bay Area in 1941. Poet, essayist, and translator, she is also the author and coauthor of several books of poetry, most recently Tribunal (Omnidawn Publishing, 2019). She served as a Chancellor of the Academy of American Poets from 2006-2012. She teaches at the University of California, Berkeley, and lives in Berkeley, California.
Date Published: 2012-01-01
Source URL: https://poets.org/poem/book-thousand-eyes-achieve-reality