7.20.2005

Today i became marooned, on foot, in the midst of eight lanes of traffic, four zooming in one direction, for zooming and honking in the other. Radios boomed and thumped through window glass; drivers could be seen singing along, cursing the driver in front of them, or doing both at once.

Although it was morning in the city, it was quite hot already. i stood perspiring on the concrete island in this asphalt river, and i was there for some time.

All at once, i became aware that the concrete island had a planter that took up most of its length. The flowers were blooming riotously, and already, at that early hour, in tremendous heat, smog and noise, dozens of bumble bees were working the flowers. They seemed almost cheerful about it. No, better: they were just being bumble bees.

So i thought, "today i am striving to be more like a bumble bee." But that just made me more like a person: wishing, striving to be something other than i was, something approachable to some degree and yet unattainable.

Then i thought: "i shall be like the traffic island: impervious, unshakeable, steady."

You see where this is going, i'm sure. And you're much quicker than i.

God has given me the bumble bee and the concrete island and i have understood that i am both of these things, and more. We are very nearly Divine; all of us, all of this, comes from the hearts of distant stars.

And so i only sat down to write this to you to let you know that i've just now begun to work on being all these things, which is to say, being truly myself.

--Mr. Gobley

6 comments:

Anonymous said...

And nobody can be a bettter you than you, mr. gobley. Thank you for such a great poem. I think I would have peed my pants in eight lane traffic. I barely can stand two :).

amba said...

Once while staying and writing in Florida I wistfully watched a gull glide by, wishing I could rest and ride on the air like that. And then I thought, "But a bird can't wish."

Wishing is just the embryo of identification, the realization that "I am all that."

Rob said...

We may be very nearly Divine, as you say, but one thing is for sure:

God neglected to give you the ability to fly over those lanes of traffic the way the bumble bees can.

(glad you survived)

By the way, did you know that "Hey Mr Gobley" is an anagram for "blog ye rhyme"? Neat.

karen said...

I was the one who said #1, must be just thinking of your situation got me nervous and I forgot to identify with myself. I was too busy identifying with you! What did you do today, rhymeman... sir?

Mr. Gobley said...

Amba: When you "stay" in Florida, do you have a special place that you "stay"?
Karen: i found you out by your inimitable style!
Karen and Rob: interesting, i've never yet rhymed in this space, but i can, if you like. stay tuned...
Also Rob, i thought "Gobley" would be a nice elision of "God bless you." Clumsy, but well-intentioned...

Anonymous said...

you are tooooo modest.