Why I love poems: the Satori Effect

Why I love poems: the Satori Effect

A Story by Nolo Segundo
"

A few words on my poem making as I turn inexorably into the home stretch of this life.

"
     Why do I love poetry? Well, it's none of the usual: beautiful words, lofty thought, noble sentiments. I can get all that from Tolstoy or the Bible. No, I love poetry, good poetry, because it is efficient. In a few lines one can become aware of something he, or she might have never thought of before. This sudden realization, a hinting at some sublime truth, reminds me of what Zen Buddhists strive for-- satori, a sudden enlightenment.
     And it does not have to be something new, just a different angle on looking at the human condition. For example, in 'To be or not to be' Shakespeare catches in just six words a question that has no doubt crossed billions of minds across the centuries--  to go on living, or to pack it in? The Bard then goes on in one of the most profound poems ever written to delineate the pros and cons of suicide. Writing this just now I had my own little satori and realized why we still read his words 400 years after his death: because he captures so well that primal existential angst, suffered only by sentient beings.
     Of course, this 'satori' effect can only hold true if your reader has some idea what you're writing about. And this is the problem with a lot of poetry today, along with much of fiction, most modern art and atonal music: the recipients have no idea what the hell to make of it. I blame Finnegan's Wake and a few poets I won't name for this 'crisis of meaning'. And those poets whose works endure, like Homer and Will and the psalmists, did not go out of their way to be obscure, pedantic, recondite. The great poets are eternal because they speak to human truths which do not change with time. Their writing may range from the simple to the sublime but it is ALWAYS trying to awaken us.
     So too I try to do so in those poems which 'come' to me because in a way I AM BEING ENLIGHTENED AS I WRITE THEM, and that is something I cannot explain-- but I am very grateful for it. How widely they are read, how long they endure, well that is just 'ego' and one of the few good things about aging is that it tends to temper one's egoism. I define a successful life simply: to love and be loved by at least one other human heart-- everything else is gravy.
     I learned as a young man over 40 years ago that the problem with life is not that it's meaningless, absurd, soulless: the problem is that there is so much import, so much significance to our brief sentient existence in THIS world that the best of us can only grasp a bit here and a bit there. My poems are written simply, but I hope not simple minded.


© 2016 Nolo Segundo



My Review

Would you like to review this Story?
Login | Register




Featured Review

Thank you, Nolo, for entering my POETRY contest, and congratulations on winning1st Place with this excellently composed treatise on our beloved art and what it means to you.
I very much enjoyed that which you had to say about poetry, referencing the notable Bard, how you feel about poetry in general, and your poetry in particular.
A far as an edit is concerned, the grammatical content of your piece is such that I see nothing whatsoever I can offer you.

Again, Nolo, "Thank you" and "Congratulations"! ⁓ Richard


Posted 1 Year Ago


1 of 1 people found this review constructive.




Reviews

Lovely! Such powerful reasons as to why you love poetry! Great essay! Thanks for entering the inspiration contest!

Posted 5 Months Ago


1 of 1 people found this review constructive.

Nolo Segundo

5 Months Ago

And thank you for the kind words!
To be or not to be is such a powerful mandate.
I've watched it live once, and it was thankfully brought to life by some of the most profound and amazing acting I have ever seen.

Good poetry, good fiction makes you freeze, stand still and contemplate.
Is that not what we all seek to get from art?

Your words ring true and your thoughts impact the reader.
Thank you for enlightening us.

Posted 1 Year Ago


Thank you, Nolo, for entering my POETRY contest, and congratulations on winning1st Place with this excellently composed treatise on our beloved art and what it means to you.
I very much enjoyed that which you had to say about poetry, referencing the notable Bard, how you feel about poetry in general, and your poetry in particular.
A far as an edit is concerned, the grammatical content of your piece is such that I see nothing whatsoever I can offer you.

Again, Nolo, "Thank you" and "Congratulations"! ⁓ Richard


Posted 1 Year Ago


1 of 1 people found this review constructive.


Request Read Request
Add to Library My Library
Subscribe Subscribe


Stats

478 Views
3 Reviews
Shelved in 1 Library
Added on March 9, 2016
Last Updated on March 9, 2016

Author

Nolo Segundo
Nolo Segundo

Philadelphia, PA



About
From adolescence until I was 24, I was an agnostic. Then I almost drowned, and had what has come to be called a near death experience. So for the past 45 years I've known that the problem with life i.. more..

Writing