Have I finally grown into despair?
Reading Du Fu’s war-carts poem in translation
(Seeking the Cave: A Pilgrimage to Cold Mountain (2014) /Lenfestey)
and in the present?
In the present, Bolton yearns
for blood and carnage and
the filth and lucre of war. Lusts for Iran oil to run
in his veins.
Once I thought…. No, not once, rather
again and again. And again. I believed
in hope…no not hope, but possibility, aspiration,
toward tolerance, amity…no not amity,
just exhausted self-interest, an awakening to reality,
a cessation of mutual destruction
in the service of selfish survival, in pursuit
of liberation to create one’s own
Jonathan Levin is a Canadian citizen, living in Northampton, MA, working as a psychotherapist. He’s been writing poems since his teens. The incomprehensibility of human behavior has been a recurring theme and wonderment. Angel or devil? Saint or sinner? Yes.