Monday, June 30, 2014


for Nicholas Maxwell

            Attaining wisdom is a noble aim
            Though often just an intellectual game;
            Whereas, far better than a brainy sport
            Are efforts of a consequential sort,
            Pursuing not abstruse enlightenment,
            But working with a practical intent
            To turn the world from foolish practices,
            Impediments to our collective bliss.

            For instance, global warming is a threat
            That science and philosophy have yet
            By abstract cogitation to resolve;
            Instead, a resolution will involve
            Both shrewd deliberation and a plan
            Of action to protect the fate of man.



    “Now is this wise?” is the question we must raise
    whenever we’ve an issue to decide
    of some import, not just a passing craze,
    but one where weighty outcomes will abide—
    for our imperative is to think straight
    and estimate the likely consequence
    of each proposed decision we debate,
    selecting then whichever makes most sense—
    not just for now but in the future, too,
    for wisdom always takes the longest view.


“Wisdom is the highest expression of self-development and future consciousness.  It is the continually evolving understanding of and fascination with the big picture of life, of what is important, ethical and meaningful, and the desire and creative capacity to apply this understanding to enhance the well being of life, for both oneself and others.”  
—Thomas Lombardo


Saturday, June 28, 2014


   Up from the dark, inchoate depths of mind,
   Where everything coherent is divined,
   A notion rose on which he’d long opined:
   The question, “How a poem is designed.”

   No sooner sought, but he began to find
   An answer with which fitting words aligned:
   That rhyme itself is naturally inclined
   To weave a web with sound and sense combined.


Friday, June 27, 2014


     Democracy succeeds old monarchy,
     For now we people must decide what’s best;
     And so it goes with God’s monopoly:
     Whose grandeur now lies in each person’s breast:

     We all must now determine what is right,
     Living by values that best serve us all,
     Finding in equity our true delight,
     Recovered now from our primordial Fall.

     The values of democracy prescribe
     That both the weak and powerful shall thrive,
     For all humanity is but one tribe
     Who must for mutual benefit contrive.

          What we now worship is the worth of each:
          There is no kinder principle to teach.


Thursday, June 26, 2014


       How did all this and we first come to be?
       And did all this from nothing then evolve?
       That is the mystery of cosmology,
       Which scientists are ardent to resolve.

       Yet far more urgent than the question How
       To seeking minds is the inquiry Why?
       And, given our development till now,
       What new directives should henceforth apply?

       For we have proved too dangerous for all
       Of Earth’s inhabitants if not constrained,
       And our insanity might well appall
       A higher, wiser intellect unstained.

            If such a one there is, perhaps our Sire,
            May he direct our souls how to aspire.


Wednesday, June 25, 2014


      Out at the further reaches of the mind,
      Will we discover that we are aligned
      With that by which the Cosmos is designed
      And be by that discovery refined?

      Will we then know our mission is fulfilled
      Since we at last have grown adept and skilled
      In love, finding all anguish in us stilled—
      For what in us was leaden now is gild?



    So, what is progress now?  Which way’s ahead?
    What is the next enlightenment in sight
    As we the “sapient” are slowly led
    Onward to wiser visions of what’s right?

    What heinous -ism is the next to fall
    Now race, religion, gender are addressed?
    What backward attitude will then appall
    The sensibilities of those most blessed?

    Is it that human beings are carnivores
    Who kill and eat our species’ next of kin?
    Is there not something in us that abhors
    Such practices and knows to name them sin?

         Our next advance in wisdom then may be
         A vegetarian sensibility.


Monday, June 23, 2014


        The poet slouched, near prostrate in his chair,
        a tablet on his lap, a pen in hand;
        his eyes were closed or narrowed in a stare
        making it hard for one to understand
        if he were then communing with his Muse
        in bliss, or merely taking a short snooze.


Sunday, June 22, 2014


for Ervin Laszlo 

    We’re overdue, some say, for a great shift
    of consciousness, designed at last to lift
    our species to a higher state of being
    by sharpening our sight to clearer seeing.

    What we so far have failed to understand
    is how to make our consciousness expand
    to comprehend the Cosmos as a whole,
    which is implicitly our destined goal.

    There is an order implicate in all
    of being, known before our fabled fall,
    the sight of which we may again regain,
    seeing the world once more without a stain.

         It is kindness and compassion that we’ll find,
         those traits for which innately we’re designed.


Saturday, June 21, 2014


for Stephen Hawking

Once before a time—before events
Transpired, a Singularity occurred:
From out of seeming nowhere an immense
Explosion came that some have named “The Word,”

And thus the Universe began to be,
Which ever since expanded and refined,
Producing a complex reality
Whose apogee may be the human mind.

In us the universe gains consciousness,
Until now just oblivious and mute,
And we may gain the power to access
The means by which to grow yet more astute—

     When possibly we’ll meet that awesome Mind
     By which this whole shebang has been designed.


Friday, June 20, 2014


Assume that every human’s meant to grow
According to our kind’s innate design
Into a loving entity aglow
With wisdom that makes cheerful faces shine.

What is it then that thwarts this grand intent
Turning so many anguished souls sour,
Estranged from ways for which their lives were meant,
Depleted of their inner wisdom’s power?

This is the Mystery of Iniquity—
That we who should be loving, kindly, just
Are moved instead to such apostasy
By pride and anger, gluttony and lust.

     Salvation, though, the path to growing wise,
     Lies not beyond our power to realize.


Thursday, June 19, 2014


    Good Orderly Direction’s evident
    throughout the universe, as science shows,
    from which it’s easy to surmise intent
    by which our very consciousness arose.

    Though some personify this cosmic mind
    as “God,” a father-figure in the sky,
    by whom the universe was once designed,
    our sober scientists don’t deify.

    But nonetheless there’s some intelligence
    that’s manifest and now expressed in us;
    why not suppose a Being who’s immense,
    benign, kindly disposed, not ominous—

         if only to have someone we can praise
         when we feel blessed on our exuberant days?


Wednesday, June 18, 2014


      What kind of knowing lifts the mystic veil
      revealing gnostic secrets hidden from
      our daily minds, telling another tale
      that only deeper consciousness can plumb?

      More than just naming it, I seek to go
      directly into such an altered state,
      where once I passed before, again to know
      this cryptic inner realm that seems innate—

      floating in oceanic consciousness,
      enrapt in soothing waves of indigo,
      absolved of daily doldrums and duress,
      beyond vicissitudes of high and low.

           This cosmic bliss of unity with all
           is that from which cursed human beings fall.


Tuesday, June 17, 2014


       “I feel your pain; I feel your happiness:
       Such empathy allows me to address
       Your various needs, however they’re inclined,
       For my sole motivation’s to be kind.”

            A caregiver has just this attitude:
            Sweet ministrations, charitably pursued.


Monday, June 16, 2014


    The new cosmology sets all things right,
    Illuminating finally our dark night:
    This early dawn of brightening consciousness
    Implies our species’ ultimate success.
    Benighted in our lust for dominance,
    Possessed by some megalomanic trance,
    We’ve lived bewildered, wreaking dreadful harm,
    As if we’re victims of some wicked charm.
    And yet that evil was but ignorance,
    A lack of wisdom that can now enhance
    Our species in this living universe
    With still unfathomed wonders to disburse.
         Through empathy we’ve finally grown kind:
         That state toward which innately we’re inclined.


Sunday, June 15, 2014


        Through sympathy you may closely relate
        With someone else’s feeling or their fate,
        But empathy lets you participate
        Completely in the affairs of their estate.


Saturday, June 14, 2014


The foremost concern of the World Future Society should be that this world have a future—a viable, vibrant future unspoiled by the careless depredations of narrow-minded human beings.

The foremost enterprise of the World Future Society should be the development and promotion of ecosophy, a world wisdom culture working to sustain Earth’s viability as a thriving global ecosystem, while advancing the wisest inquiries and enterprises of human invention.

Ecosophy might be called “the art of flourishing,” the cultivation of our species’ highest potentials, that sapience for which we are providently named.


Friday, June 13, 2014


   So, if we screw things up here on the Earth,
   the Universe will go about its ways
   conceiving a new planetary birth
   in hopes of reaching still a higher phase.

   With all of space/time for its laboratory,
   the Cosmos carries out experiments,
   a few no doubt redounding to its glory,
   but still its rate of failure is immense.

   The odds, then, that this Earth will live and flourish
   depend on us—how well we realize
   what efforts we must make to plant and nourish
   the sustenance we need for growing wise.

        A global wisdom culture is our aim:
        for lack of which, our folly ends this game.


Thursday, June 12, 2014


       While sitting by my stream of consciousness
       and idly casting out a line to hook
       a fleeting notion that might well express
       a motive I’d not want to overlook,
       I felt my reel unroll and pressed my thumb
       to slow its motion till I’d fixed the hook
       in my imagined fish, perhaps a chum,
       a friendly notion not to overlook.
       Then suddenly it breeched its watery bounds
       and shaking shards of light it arced and fell,
       an action that amazes and astounds
       and bodes a poem’s going very well.
            Last thing to do is land this latest catch
            then add it to my ever-growing batch.


Wednesday, June 11, 2014

NEMEROV 2014 #7


    When we become aware that we’re aware,
    We cannot help but wonder further: Why?
    What is this strange self-consciousness we share
    With others of our kind and can’t deny?

    As Homo sapiens sapiens we know
    We know, but deeper mysteries abound,
    Strange places where our consciousness can’t go
    And all our inquisitions still confound.

    In time, however, we may realize
    A new dimension of intelligence,
    And more than just perceptive, we’ll grow wise:
    Perennial enigmas will make sense.

         But few so far have fathomed such a sight
         And seen the Cosmos clear in such a light.


Tuesday, June 10, 2014


    What progress and development may mean
    throughout the course of human history
    is often guessed but not yet clearly seen,
    since we’re not certain what we’re meant to be—

    or if intention is applicable:
    a master-plan in some designer’s mind
    to make a perfect individual,
    an end toward which our species is inclined.

    If evolution is no arrow aimed
    to hit a target in futurity
    (despite what some philosophers have claimed),
    we still may grow to some maturity,
         a natural consequence of trial and error
         that takes us to a state that’s richer, rarer



Monday, June 9, 2014


       What are the farther reaches of my mind?
       With what capacities am I designed
       that wait in latency until I find
       the passageway to where they lie confined?

       When heart and soul and senses are aligned,
       that secret passageway can then be mined.


Sunday, June 8, 2014


       By mind I mean awareness that I am,
       and separate from all other things around,
       knowing my existence is no sham
      and certain that this insight is profound.

       Self-consciousness like ours appears unique
       among all living creatures here on Earth,
       for only humans are disposed to seek
       such comprehension and to claim such worth.

            No other entity seems so designed—
            unless there is a maker of our mind.


Saturday, June 7, 2014


      While driving down a lonely country road
      just after dawn, a coffee in one hand,
      I saw ahead where a hitchhiker strode,
      and since I had no destination planned,
      I stopped to pick him up: “Give me a lift?”
      He asked and smiled, a friendly seeming guy:
      “Ain’t got no money, but I’ve got a gift
      to give you, which I think you won’t deny.”
      “Hop in,” I said, “No need, the ride’s on me.
      Glad for the company.  Where are you goin’?”
      “To Storyville,” he said.  “I’d like to see
      that town,” I said, “a place I think worth knowin’.
      You see, I’m just a poet who reflects,
      but story’s how a reader’s heart connects.”


Friday, June 6, 2014


        If wisdom is the goal at which we aim—
        Not pleasure nor prosperity nor fame—
        What is it in that state we’ll realize
        Is the true eminence of being wise?

        It’s that we’ll then be able to discern
        What is of highest value and to turn
        From trivial pursuits and optimize
        The choices that we make—for that is wise.

        And of those choices, nothing stands above
        The quintessential motivation: love.


Thursday, June 5, 2014


      No other human virtue stands above
      The fondness and affection we call love:
      This tender feeling of solicitude
      Is to our hearts the savoryest of food,
      Which warms and cheers us, filling all with joy
      That neither time nor distance can alloy.


Wednesday, June 4, 2014


     In a culture that is wiser than our own,
     what values and what mores would prevail?
     What bad behaviors would it not condone?
     What wayward motives would its laws curtail?

     A Wisdom Culture holds no motive higher
     than that our Earthly biosphere should flourish,
     whose health, because of us, has grown dire,
     and which we need to foster and to nourish.

     Though we should be this world’s most glorious 

     the paragon of evolution’s aim,
     we’ve now become a heinous over-reacher
     quite likely to extinguish this world’s flame.

          I pray it’s not too late to realize
          and act on motives that are truly wise.


Tuesday, June 3, 2014


        If now and then I craft some lines of verse
        Unusually sonorous and terse,
        More substantive, insightful, even witty
        Than my more typical diurnal ditty,

        Then I feel briefly that my soul’s come home,
        And what I’ve written counts as a true poem—
        Of course this clearly is not one of those,
        As anyone discerning surely knows.


Sunday, June 1, 2014


 This verse has no idea where to go,
 although now that it’s started and proceeds,
 it generates parameters that show
 me how I might advance, suggesting leads
 that seem fortuitous, mere accident,
 but line by line reveal covert design
 implying some mysterious intent
 as form and matter mystically align.
 Is it that I’ve become a medium
 of some mysterious entity or mind
 that without my assistance would be dumb,
 though with my help may have its thoughts defined?
 Let’s say that’s so, for I’ll be glad to share
 with anyone who makes me more aware.



Consultant Patrick Jane, with the FBI,
will always scoff and patently deny
that he has “psychic” powers, but insist
his only talent’s as a “mentalist.”

A former con artist, keen to observe
his mark’s proclivities then pitch a curve,
Jane fakes them out with sleight of hand or mind
using some ruse he’s cunningly designed.

His modus operandi is his wit,
which strikes before the target knows he’s hit:
Jane’s more like Puck than sterner Sherlock Holmes:
Sherlock is disquisitions, Jane is poems.

     While three dimensions bind the rest of us,
     Jane’s found another one, more ominous.