What Use Is the Poet? William T. Dawson’s “Snow Blindness”

The Poet gropes in the darkness for the switch knowing that the light that is sought lies within. –William T. Dawson

I met William Dawson when I told a story at last year’s Sunflower Festival in Mountainaire, New Mexico. We shared supper on his simple terrace as we gazed across the desert leading up to the blue mountains. When I read his question about the poet’s role in village life, I think of PLATO’S REPUBLIC —JGR

by William T. Dawson
Dedicated to Viviane

The Poet gropes in the darkness for the switch knowing that the light that is sought lies within.

What use is The Poet? For all he/she knows how to do is paint pictures with words, words slapped on parchment like a carpenter nailing wooden pegs in a coffin.

The words become fewer and fewer in length until they finally disappear, and The Poet finds himself writing blank pages so deep in spirit that even spirit has a hard time deciphering their meaning.

The Poet is so dependent on his fellow man that he could easily put to work an entire city working in unison to the beat of his heart.

So what use is The Poet to a town, a village, a community of man? For he knows not how to do anything except decipher the meaning of life in words that fall on deafened ears. Yet, what good is a town, a village, a community of man without The Poet? For who else has the power to hold the vision of life and disperse it throughout.

The Poet gropes in the darkness for the mop to swab the milk spilled by mankind in their economic destruct fullness needed to feed their ego only to discover that he is only a pebble in an ocean of milk.

An ocean of milk soured by mankind that flows like an endless spring until Mother Earth steps in to reclaim the universe that is hers. Her domain ruled by laws far above mankind’s yet distinctively understood by The Poet.

For The Poet gropes for the words that will penetrate the hollowness of society’s entertainment only to discover that joy lies within, and he yearns to be returned to the warmth of the womb that first nurtured his soul and breathed life into his journey.

Life is a circle and the journey of The Poet is much like one walking in circles in a blizzard that is labeled Life….groping for this, groping for that, groping, groping until the snow like flag of surrender is finally draped over his coffin of sacredness.

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