Poem: Virtuality

Posted Aug 29, 2007
Last Updated Apr 12, 2008

John Dalmas

Marching through Georgia with a finger up my nose,
I picked a purple dandelion and thought it was a rose,
Cump Sherman looked at me and told my friends that I was crazy,
that I had picked a touch-me-not and thought it was a daisy.
I was a little miffed at such a mis-repre-sentation,
and so he had me court mar-tialled for in-subor-dination.

The court called in a botanist to settle who was right,
a forensical taxonomist who wasn't very bright.
"They're both Compositae," he said, "the dandelion and daisy,
and thus," he argued, "technically the dif-fer-ence is hazy.
In a sense they both are right, and who can say they're not?"
"I can," the general replied, and had the fellow shot.

So I booted up Gray's Manual, by Microsoft you know,
with hypertext, and color holographs that flower and grow.
"Smell this," I said, "and you will know at once that I was right."
He sniffed, and sneezed 500 times, it took him half the night.
For it was none of the above, he learned to his displeasure,
but virtual goldenrod, with virtual pollen beyond measure.

"Case dismissed!" the general said when he'd run out of snot,
then had me taken to the yard, against the wall, and shot.
Interesting, I told myself, as I viewed my empty body,
I'd have to say that both our mental processes were shoddy.
Reality is virtual in either case, you see,
though one is somewhat subtler, the "real" reality.

The general too looked down, for he had also died I found,
he'd sneezed his brains right out his nose, to soak into the ground.
"Ah lad," he said, "we both were wrong, and therein lies a lesson,
which when we've learned just what it is will surely be a blessin'."
We shook on that, and both agreed reality is a school,
where we'd been students many times, it real-ly was cool.

And when we'd had a little break to digest our education,
we'd both go down and have another re-matri-culation.

Jyoti Shah

Sep 25, 2007

What a beautifully well-composed way to describe a fragment's astral experience! Just lovely! More of these will be simply great!