Yesterday’s Poem of the Day

I wrote a poem the other day, a nice poem, just one of my usual 4 liners, and I posted it on a poetry site and checked this morning and it had slid way down the list and had zero likes, zero comments, and zero shares.
I am not surprised at that. I often get only a couple of likes, sometimes some comments but not always, and my work almost never gets shared. A bit frustrated , for sure, as I think I’m one of the best writers on the site, if not the best, but I suppose all writers feel that way. If someone doesn’t feel that their writing provides a unique and brilliant insight into our existence, why would they write at all?
Anyway, I liked the poem, so I am going to talk about it here. It goes:
Imagination only goes so far
it cannot change the way things really are
But, what it can change, for all to see
Is the way that things are going to be

It was originally a much shorter poem. The first two lines just popped into my head, as I was out on the balcony smoking a joint. I love it when that happens. I am of a mind with Gertrude Stein, when a reporter asked her why she liked to write, she said “I don’t like to write. I like having written.”

But, it was a negative thought, a poem just saying imagination is pointless, and that is not me at all. So, I forced out the last two lines, which I also like. It’s the old AA mantra, about having the courage to change the things you can’t accept, the patience to accept the things you can’t change, and the wisdom to know the difference.
Well, one of the things you can’t change is the way things are in the present. The forces that shape the present already took place in the past and are well beyond our power to change. We will never prevent the rise of Hitler, we will never erase the stain of human slavery, we will never bring back the Tasmanians, or Homo Florensis, or the Neanderthals.
The history of our species is not pretty. Nonetheless, we have potential. The future could be better than today, and seeing it that way is the first step.

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