~The poet uses the butterfly net of language to catch fleeting images in mid-flight~

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Before the Mast

And what of our Nature?
What can we truly say of it?

Certainly we are more than dust.
Certainly more than the baser instincts.
And certainly deeper than inspiration.
Certainly we are more real than
Cheap exhortations to piousness.

But in the dark of night
Stumbling in blindness
We need the lamp that brings light.

It is elegant in its wholeness.
The ceramic bowl made from clay,
The oil contained within,
Squeezed from a fissure of the earth,
Or rendered from the blubber
Of the deepest diver.
Then the wick,
The stem,
The conduit,
That connects the dark reservoir
With the apex.

Here, the mystery of the sparking heavens
Leaps to ignite the saturated tip.
Suddenly the flame is there
And the light chases the darkness
Into the shadows.

Are we not just this?
Bearers of the light?

The celestial arc of stars
Meets in the maw
Of a dark and fertile place.
There is nothing left to do
But squeeze the slippery fuel
From its ancient rendered flesh
And light the way forward....

We are restless mariners
Captives of our dreams
Sailing for the far horizon.


  1. I think the last three lines just say it all Tiger. It's exactly what we are x

  2. yes we are bearers of the light...as we pass it hand to hand...yes we are...

    good to see you tiger...

  3. Wow - love it -we are bearers of light and all things are connected. And indeed the only thing to do is to keep passing on the light.

  4. Bearers of the light, navigating through dark waters. Just so. It's quite the image, though it is your parting one that really struck me: "
    We are restless mariners
    Captives of our dreams
    Sailing for the far horizon." A beautiful descriptor for it - the perfect image. All we can do is just keep sailing on. One day that sun will set for us, but till then, we can but follow it across the water...

  5. restless
    and sometimes a little sea sick
    i feel the waves in my heart
    leap and then drop
    my face hits the deck

  6. I love it as usual! In our boat of life, we learn through the storms not on the calm seas. I want my light to shine, to dispel the shadows, to be a beacon so that others may follow my Captain. Thanks for this! I feel refreshed in my spirit from the reading of it!

  7. "We are restless mariners
    Captives of our dreams"
    ..beautiful poem..thank you for sharing.

  8. You never fail to touch my heart my friend. Thank you. ~ @Windowsot Robert. (Steve)

  9. loved it !
    what depth!
    what imagination!
    Thanks for sharing Tiger!! :)
    also liked the comment of nance marie

  10. Thanks a lot Tiger, I think humaneness is our only chance to come back Home, and Light is the way to walk; your poetry help us all to remind it.

  11. 'Then the wick,
    The stem,
    The conduit,
    That connects the dark reservoir
    With the apex.'

    Wonderful, I loved every word.

    Susannah :-)

  12. Oh yes we are...
    'Are we not just this?
    Bearers of the light?'
    I enjoyed it throughly...

    ॐ नमः शिवाय
    Om Namah Shivaya
    Connect with me at Twitter @VerseEveryDay

  13. Hmmm....thank you for this gorgeous moment... Hmmm...It is elegant in its wholeness..beautiful!...

  14. Another simply wonderfully written view of human nature.
    Loved every word. Tiger, you are a true visionary.

  15. "Cheap exhortations to piousness." is a beautiful line.

  16. Beautiful poem Tiger - there are a number of lines in here I like. I'd point them out, but I'm "sailing for the far horizon." Thanks for sharing your heart and soul with us.