03 October 2018

Finding the Road of Balance

The road of excess leads to the palace of wisdom.
~ William Blake, “The Proverbs of Hell”
 from The Marriage of Heaven and Hell

I use the fall and catch method to walk.
Balance faltered when I sold my bicycle,
or vice versa. The more distance I tried
to cover, the more headstrong and headlong.

Physical balance declines, but other
hidden powers gain equilibrium:
Passion partners with common sense, rashness
bows to temperance, and eagerness waits.

Momentum fights this alteration.  Habit
cries out “Get hot” and wisdom sighs “Stay Cool,”
as if gangs wrestle in my soul.  Yet right
sharing of personal resources must win.

Join a protest or write a poem?  Accept
new appointments or practice saying  “no”?
Tell all the truth, or tell it slant?  Provide
an answer or give someone else the chance?  

Read two chapters instead of the whole book.
Play solitaire for minutes, not for hours.
Eat one plateful, saving for tomorrow.
Stick to the lesson, not juicy tangents.  

Meditation helps, even five minutes
a day.  No need to crowd and overdo,
substituting falseness for innocence.
Nothing more urgent than patience.

For my prompt Poets United Midweek Motif ~ Balance

(I allude to a song in West Side Story and an Emily Dickinson poem.)

My blog poems are rough drafts.
Please respect my copyright. 

© 2018 Susan L. Chast


Sumana Roy said...

Yeah, I agree completely. Ha, there's an endless fight between habit and wisdom in life it seems. Sense of proportion should win :)

Sherry Blue Sky said...

I love all of these insights into moderation. The older I grow, the slower I go, and that feels just fine to me. Smiles.

Gillena Cox said...

Luv the summative nature of your Verse 2 Susan
Happy you dropped by my blog today

much love...

Therisa's World said...

Susan, your poem leaves me, how do I improve the balance of my daily life. Right now, I don't know, but there is room to do so.

Old Egg said...

Life is certainly a tussle with ones own mind isn't it? I love reading but get frustrated when someone recommends a book and I hate it! What did they see in it!?

Kim M. Russell said...

Yes, I'm slowing down too! That's the great thing about retirement, you can do things at your own pace, although I'm just as busy as ever. :)

Thotpurge said...

as if gangs wrestle in my soul.. oh yes, that feels all too familiar!!! but is the stillness of a zen master's mind the answer?

Geetashree Chatterjee said...

Difficult choices but that's what make life worth living

annell4 said...

A lovely poem about getting just right, or finding balance.

rallentanda said...

With age comes a certain wisdom and we have to make readjustments to many things.Being sensible at long last:)

Magical Mystical Teacher said...

Sometimes I think we try too hard to maintain balance in our lives, as the questions in your poem reflect. I remember something one of my high school English teachers was fond of saying: "Let go, and let God." Maybe that's the way to achieve the balance we strive for.

Amit Agarwal said...

Aha..what a fine balance! A great tribute and help to indecisive Librans in perennial dilemma:)