Anatomy of Madness

THE madman ambles down the ragged day
Lost in the shadows of the way
Those that poets seek but seldom find
So muzzle the canine streets
Lest they tear to shreds
The companionable solitude of his mind.

Perhaps he knows what I don’t
Strange visions of an imagined haunt
A moment’s torrid impulse
Or an abstruse tiff
That turned a worldly tale
Into a taunt.

I imagine a Socratic figure
Pacing the streets of Greece
Or hunched in an avid circle
A questioning, rapier mind
Ready to rip and flout
The expanding radii of doubt.

Might he be the German reborn
Quietened since a manic storm
A man who unravelled tragedy
Gave up his mind
And had no axe to grind
Except with gods in their twilight.

Or someone like that brilliant Woolf
Whose words sang, between
Towering wave and trough
A mind that flowed when she wrote
Till she walked into a river
Stones inside her coat.

I think of a perfect child
Burbling at his mother’s knee
A body poised for casual growth
Before an invisible slight
Turned on its head
A budding mind into a blight.

What is it that drove him unhinged?
Is it a private grief
Or some unspeakable art
Between ocean tides and
What the seahorse hides
That made a recluse of his heart.

No worldly law can ever grasp
What sudden bolt makes a man mad
Caught in a compatible parade
Senator and priest in their charade
All linear ants in an alley
Impatient of an anomaly.

The madman ambles ragged
Down his indifferent path
An insular Archimedes
In his bath.

2 thoughts on “Anatomy of Madness

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s