You unsighted academician! Quit walking in the dark.
What are you doing, leading others into a pit?
A pit, where you hoard yourself and proudly sit!
Oh artist! Your canvas glistens with hue -
A red, a green, a yellow and a blue
So many shades…don’t they perplex you?
Multi-colored uncertainty…diplomacy’s back?
Where’s the certain? The white, the black?
You need to grow younger. Be a kid.
Be white. Be life. Hope like every toddler ever did.
Or maybe you need to grow older. Be aged.
Be black. Be death. Be an old bird – lifeless and caged.
Color’s not what I want, I say!
Simplicity, certainty…that’s the call of the day.
You’re blinded, as you search the ivory tower for enchanted musk.
I don’t understand your search…your dawn; nor your dusk.
I see things only in simplicity,
Complex forks and dead-ends better left out of my kitty.
My day lives only in its extremes - a white morn, a black night.
Your thousand colors of twilight are just not right.
You’re an artist of mixed hues, of unanswered questions.
You’re an ace diplomat, of twilight-ed, setting or rising suns.
Give me an answer! All the truths! I wanna know ‘em!
Be an artist of words, sketch me a poem.
Be a painter of certain, true words,
Draw me a poem of black and white birds –
The ones that fly into wrongs or rights,
And know no skies of uncertain, grayish whites.
I am tired of your “…there are no right answers, you see…”
Can’t you do a small favor for me?
Be a fisher of certainty,
Fish me the dark black sea.
I prefer to drown in decisive, salty waters
Than live in bleak, uncertain matters.
You see no lighthouse, you are so lost!
And so am I. You’re a sinking ship, getting old at my cost!
Be a playful kid on a beach of twilight,
And carry in your pockets just some sandy white…
Just a wrong. Maybe a right.
Be an adventurous village urchin, fly me a liberated kite.”
I use many words to express what I want to say.
I am the king of wordiness. Brevity isn’t my thing. Nay.
He answers only in a few words, this artist of mine.
He even throws my poem into a bin. I feel like a poor kid working at shoe-shine.
He says, “Be a sailor, set off on a curious ferry.
Fight the grays, and find your black in perpetual inquiry.”
He says, “Be a soldier, shun all fear, shun all pretence.
Fight the odds, and find your white in reckless patience.”
He says, “Be a student, forever in search of what is right.
Fight the maybes, and find your monochromatic light.”
I retort, “How can you say that?”
He says, “I was just like you,
I started off as a painter…with the red, green and blue.
But as I have grown, I’ve forgotten to paint. Just sketching, just a pencil.
I have only a pot of blacks and whites to show. Not another utensil.”
I object, “Why must I go a full circle? I am already there!”
He smiles with kindness, and knows he’s got me thinking.
“The sea’s calling. Set off, face the winds, the storms, the near-sinking.
You need to sail off into the gray waters of doubt.
That will give you your answers. There’s no easy way out.
It will be quite an experience! Start the colorful journey,
Tell me what you saw, and tell me what you did not see.
Go, my son. Sail the colors, and return to the white and black.”
So, I’m off on my journey. One day, I too will say, “Been there, done that!”