From the age of Homer, a poet calls on the muses and creates a painting with words. The modern poet brushes the ink of infinity glimpsed from within the finite onto the page. God grants this small sliver of insight in the foresight of eternity, and for a moment, shifts the perspective in the hands of time. Salvador Dali painted this concept in melting clocks. Yet, in the modern age of science being the well-spring of all knowledge and mind attempting to separate from matter, we are less likely to call this God or the muses. Instead we fancy scientific terms like quantum entanglement. The concept of entanglement nevertheless necessities an understanding of collective consciousness on some level that we have not wholly been removed from on the tree of life. There is inside the poet a yearning to define the philosophical questions of who am I and why am I here? There are some modern poems so beautiful they almost form a bridge between the magic of the shifting planes of philosophy and the concrete of science.
The modern poet gets to share his or her little bridges between realities much faster with others than previously because of the great advancements of science and technology. Because of social media, an insight into human existence may be thought and shared with the world within minutes of its occurrence. It isn’t mind reading, but it is communication at a much faster level with one another the nine muses might even admire. However, depravity and thoughts shallow and devoid of depth are also shared and admired by many at the same rate of speed. Simply having a greater speed for communication does not equate valuable communication. The modern poet can act as a questioner with a few short verses of reminding us of the things God placed in the hearts of man in this world of science. A simple poem of love and hope, even poorly crafted, can inspire the mind to remember there are greater things at work than the fear of missing out motivating our youth… and sometimes myself.
While so doing, because we have begun to communicate on a global scale, many poems in the west have begun to hint of Zen concepts. A poet may endeavor to define an abstract idea which in its essence is not describable. Many a poem attempts to say—and she loved him. However, whatever the poet could write about love, it also isn’t. This is why there will never be enough love poems. Victor Hugo also reminded us that when we love, we look on the face of God. The art of Zen is inadvertently discovered here in the nature of attempting to describe the indescribable. Zen further reminds us to view the world as William Blake wrote in Auguries of Innocence, “To see the World in a Grain of Sand and Heaven in a Wild Flower.” The poet with a hint of beginner’s mind can attempt to find the eternity in the mundane and organize the beauty to be found in the now in modern verse.
In the power of poetry in the new world, the modern poet forms a bridge between the philosophical planes and the age of science, and can act in the role of questioner. Ideally, he or she will also be able to add a hint of Zen and momentarily transmute the mundane in our lives into the beautiful. The modern poet glimpses the infinite in the limited perspective of infinite time and writes that into lines.
Hali J. Cross has a degree in English Education, and she is currently pursuing her MBA. She became an English major for the pure love of reading but found she liked writing poems in her college poetry class. Her professor was irritated she started her poems with capital letters. However, she believes the choice of starting each sentence with a capital is reflective of the way she approaches her poems as if touching an idea for the first time. She is a regular contributing poet for Thorn Literary magazine. It is a new online periodical, and she will get to be a special part of the winter issue (announcement coming soon). She also recently had a short story and poem published on the Shameless Author. Last, she is a featured writer on Ello the Creator’s Network where she has 9,800 organic followers. That link is here: https://ello.co/hjcross_poetry