A Fine Madness

-in all cases please feel free to substitute "she" for "he."

There is a fine madness in the mind of man,
it slips in quietly, as though on the lam.

It slips in the cracks in his defense,
and it helps him get off the fence.

But that is his demise.
Most men catch it.
Only the few become wise.

He wasn't born that way; his heart was pure.
But his culture awaited, wanting to make sure.

That he learned all their mores, good and bad.
That he learned their prejudices, like all he had.

But then he came to a place called school,
where he learned about other things,
like the Golden Rule.

School opened his mind to the world,
and with that many contradictions unfurled.

Some contradictions were easily slayed,
but others were angrily displayed.

Sometimes he had to fight for what was right,
even if he looked a fool in his friend's sight.

Choosing his friends became the rule,
his friends made him strong,
his friends made him cool.

But he had to grow up and get on with his life,
go to college, get a job, and take him a wife.

Some looked to college, as training for a job,
others to cool, gain knowledge, or hobnob.

For some the pressure of college was too great,
a fine madness got him and it was too late.

For those without college options were few,
work for his father, flip burgers, or stew.

Over why he couldn't have the finer things in life,
while a fine madness crept into his strife.

If he chose the military, with long boredom,
followed by brief shots of instant terror,
if alcohol didn't get him, a fine madness lay there.

And so, like most men, he fell in love and married,
so often too early when he should have tarried.

A fine madness crept in and split them apart,
their promises of forever were never smart.

The middle of life he struggled with money,
the house, the car, the kids, and, the honey.

He had no time for thought or general reflection,
what his buddies did, was his only expectation.

He grew tired of his work and other men's rules,
sought retirement early, not like other fools.

He blamed the government for his dilemmas,
and sought its protection and its tools.

A fine schizophrenia that caught him unawares,
government was bad when it cost him,
good when it countered his terrors.

As he grew older and hoped to be wise,
a brain disease came over him that he despised.

Forgetful and inarticulate, he gradually gave in,
to the prejudices of his childhood, allowing them to win.

Afraid of his life, and fearful of death,
religion overtook him, to his last breath.

Ladder to the Moon

Image Courtesy ThinkPublic.com


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Copyright 2009 © Ronald W. Hull