O mnie

Jestem jak droga polna, niczyja,  którą się mija,

Co nigdzie wiodła i wieść nie będzie, choć idzie wszędzie.

Dzieli mnie zawsze, tak jak tę drogę,
miedza od nieba,
a poco jestem pojąć nie mogę, bo mnie nie trzeba!

Nie byłem nigdy sobie, czy komu,
drogą do domu –
i dobrze życzę każdej godzinie
kiedy już minie.

Contact me

Ryszard Antolak

antolak@antolak.co.uk

 

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Vulnerable Bodies

 

Bodies are vulnerable. The physical environment that surrounds them is dangerous with hard objects, hostile to soft flesh and bone. Instead of transforming the environment to suit our flesh-and-blood bodies, we have opted to make ourselves hard and machine-like (both physically and psychologically): armored from reality like hermit crabs.

In a few years time, it will be possible to replace every single part of the human body (with the exception perhaps of the brain) with synthetic substitutes.  Much of this can already be done. We have mechanical limbs operated by computers, ceramic hip-joints, steel bones , plastic hearts, plastic corneas, cochlea implants etc etc. As this continues, our humanity will become  melded with machine, and ‘man’ himself, whatever we mean by this term, will soon become merely a metaphor, a hypothetical ‘ghost in the machine’.

Twenty years ago, we imagined machines (robots in the image of men and woman), taking over our jobs and livelihoods. But our fears were ill-founded. Instead, the movement came from the other direction. Men became increasingly robotic, impersonal and  machine-like, both in their character and in their relations with one another. Many in the western world already act (at least in part) as if they were machines:  they are dispassionate, perfunctory with little empathy for anyone. Their attention and care is directed towards electronic devices. They are increasingly ruthless in their daily affairs, while conforming to a belief that “real life” is only lived at home (or perhaps on holiday). In supermarkets as well as in business, they treat one another in a functional , instrumental manner, almost completely as objects. Their relations with  others are diplomatic, institutionalized. Their desires and opinions are directed by the dictates of the media, informed by disembodied voices on the radio that drown out the songs of the angels and reduce sacred speech to the level of barter or games  or economics. Enclosing themselves in man-made environments, they shelter behind iphones and computer screens..

Yes. You can hide yourself in rock pools like a crab, but the mighty ocean will always find you.

A man is only free if he can release his imagination from the cage of its domesticity. So it is good to be a little mad: to loosen the straps of the straight-jackets we have worn since childhood.. We have too long been domesticated. We have forgotten the wild sacredness of our original existence. Why were we not brave enough to have lived life more wildly, madly, like the dancing gnats blown away by an evening wind or the  geese with their long necks stretched out into the future, above the clouds?

The wild stallions of the night will not be stopped. Listen, already you can hear them chewing at their bits, whinneying in impatience, stamping their hooves, opening their nostrils to the distant scents of freedom. Risk everything and run with them! Yes, it will be dangerous. But if you must be cut by Life, die by the sharpened sickle of a crescent moon.

And remember to hold onto the sky. Trust it with all your heart. For the earth will always betray you.

 

 

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