Sunday, February 05, 2006

Gene Wilder

Richard Dawkins is the high priest of traditional Darwinism and he fight the battle well in books such as The Selfish Gene and The Blind Watchmaker.

I’ve just finished reading the latter. Typical of Dawkins’ feisty nature, he takes as many swipes at potential allies (such as proponents of ‘punctuated evolution' like Stephen Jay Gould and those of ‘molecular drive’ like Gabriel Dover) as his obvious enemies – the creationists.

He writes with great spirit though with occasional slapdash and condescension. He spins useful metaphors and parables to expand upon difficult points. His fascination with computer imagery (the book was written in 1986) now seems curiously dated as is the puny power of his then computers.

I enjoyed his exposition of bats’ echolocation and how when scientists tried to prove it existed to a conference in 1941, the peer group indignantly panned this proof on the grounds that radar was still a military classified subject and it was offensive to believe that bats could match, let alone pre-date human technological prowess!

road poem
so what wrong with my head
god spare me some cells in a room of my view
don’t make me the hanging judge of a hung Jewry
with only me to see the funeral
time is merely entropy emitted backwards
but I created it from nothing
and working in my rear true mirror
I re-invent the past and relive the blast
and feel the schrapnel of a long exploded supernova
and we all lived happier ever after once before
but when we fast ran out of once before onces
we explained it all with symbols and sunsets
genesis of many colourful beliefs
manifold and simple
but because my casuistic cause
causes over-strict reaction
only takes six days to build the world
but seven is a long time in politics
soulsausage burned by scientist intent
garotted and mashed by knowledgable big bangers
I glean the gold like scraps of goodness in this misery
of ghettoes, slums and shantytowns
black holes on earth
where most of us are sucked in abject wonder
I know why the bus did not stop
I’m fighting the frighteningly real though not mathematical true
go out there and differentiate
burn everything english except its energy
the servants of the servants are demanding their severance price
to lead I must help
and walk among the weeds of uncultivated obeying principle
its a hard road to follow
its easier to do this masqued in cassock, clothed in the faithful,
I will die beaten but with a message beyond the medium
put my shoulders on my back
and as my sins slip off me
and fall three times and die
so that others may have life
in the best and worst of worlds
in this too shitty tale
its the only one I’m in
the problem with you jesus
is that you are a prisoner of my imagination
a life that is every-choice perfect
christ must I accept this?
when I keel over rusted on the outside
while inside insipid, insights off-sight
bloated to mediocre excess
society overripe and turning rotten
so supply this crap compost with an afterlife resurrection
extensions of the law and choices abounding
see demagogue poets refugees from another ring
spell out wisdom and an unsupplied machine code
giving out clues to the human password
among the mixed bag of fanatics and whisky priests
some deranged by their own piety
some enraptured by stark experience
the revolutionary military and the clerics and partially insane
rocking the kaaba in a lullaby down riyadh lane
in the happy chain of a chant, in the paradise of a dance
these bootless mosque moments
are a push from a counter-culture
supplying spiritual aid for Kuwait
like soul stone cold in Newcastle
I dream that my life adventure be over
I sit among the costly cynical wreckage
the price of every thing these days is known
will my life be remembered only for the funeral bill
this shallow callowness, I allow, I cannot swallow
trotters tottering in panic
free-flight pigs look so manic
over the moon in the flying pan
I dream of Roger Bacon in strange circumstance
with a twisted smile on his lips
and a crooked tune which he whistled
to cheddar cowboys in the meadow
‘how now chairman tao”
thought by many teachers to accept
that sharkjaws in the gene pool are
diet dracula for the dyspeptic generation
this advertising pushing pull drags us further
brushed under the carpet in tides between right and wrong
and swept away by the culture of the weather
just another space commodity
polluted by the admans apples
and adam’s atman
a merry jingle, by jingo
faking orgasms while speaking wank
only dream for what is possible
look away while we give you the
“miracle cure of the bedsore of the eyes”
don’t let the imposition of a manmade commandment
stop you from dwelling on this question far too long
do dervishes only dance anticlockwise and
are there mathematical clues to the puzzle of their ecstasy?
through hymn with hymn and in hymn
only power of imagination lies beyond reason
and may defeat it yet
and its quite desperation of deep space monsters
nothing earthly I hope
in my dream I’m slowing faster than light
unmanufactured by science
flowing with the glow
this sea of empty squares
chasing windmills and electric chairs
smacking of the purest heroine
eloping with a sometimes charming mortician
fleeing ahead of the posse of statisticians
thats how you’d do it
so imagine

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