Now I’m young and go where I please and
do as I please. God forbid the day I’m old
and must go where I don’t want to!
I’m no Peter, I’m no martyr, and want no inverted crucifix
awaiting me. I’m no scholar, no barbarian, just
a grunge kid who grew up listening to Pearl Jam
and Candlebox, empathizing with the ostracized
and the sorrowed, because I know what being trapped
in a burning room with a shit-stained floor is.
I’m no Elijah or Moses. I don’t prophesize but have
seen enough to Intuit, and my emotion both gets the
better of me and guides me like both a maelström and
a sweet breeze.
I’m no PHD candidate or hell, even degree material
but I know of Kierkegaardian tragic heroes, sacrificing
people for greater good; aesthetic heroes, keeping silent
to protect; knights of resignation unable to grasp
abstract faith and men like Abraham who stand
in an absolute relationship with the absolute.
I know of Kierkegaardian stages of despair and
stages of sin, because unlike braggarts who wear
their ‘degrees’ like insignias on their uniforms
(please note the pun on the last word), I read for
the trill of experience. I know of Hagel’s purer-
than-faith philosophy which some consider blasphemy,
because I want to know and have nothing to prove.
And I tell you all this not because I want to boast,
but because fools living in caves plagued with bats,
looking at symbols on the walls, which are just
reflections of their predatory instincts think
I’m still chained. No, my friend, I’ve walked out of
the cave, but have realized that Plato was wrong about
self-transcendence. It’s a myth because despair and conscience
are innate and with each sin, one bulb fuses within, and
so how can one hardwired to depravity, transcend himself?
The truth I found is a negative truth, but there’s hope, but
only for the elect. And sadly, I’m either one condemned to
the fires of purgatory for full sanctification if God is gracious,
or one condemned to hell if God is just.
I could tell you of Lucifer’s fall and Adam falling short:
Mysteries best left unheard, and I didn’t learn
these things from books or attending college, because
college is for hipster, postmodern idiots who say
truth is subjective and are yet radical enough to hack
anything resembling conservatism down.
I can talk of Chomsky and anarchy, Dostoevsky and freedom,
Camus and absurdism, Sartre and nihilism, but I leave it to
knowledge peddling educated morons. Selling syllables
for a dime. And I consider them elitists because they’re
pseudo-intellectuals. Knowledge without insight is
standing under the sun, and knowing exactly where you are,
but still unable to tell if it’s hot or cold. It’s fool’s gold.
So, keep your degrees and your lecherous instincts,
but know that I know your secrets and who you are
and I’m not as forgiving as fate. Counter me once more
in a post and I’ll expose you, drag your poetic corpse across
streets of shame, drawn by horses of rage, and toss you
in a pit of excrement where you belong.
© Nitin Lalit Murali (2018)