Monday, June 18, 2012

On Servants, And Shadows


Montaigne, wanting to know what the actual
experience of sleep was, to catch himself
between worlds as he explored incessantly
the myriad sensations thrown up by life,
had a servant wake him at odd hours
so he could experience his consciousness
as it flowed back and away - thought
congealing around dream, held
by what could not be known
in the darker spaces of the mind. This,
a tantalisingly difficult shade to catch.
Still, he wrote about it with seeming ease,
and his words have travelled across time
to lay a thread we can follow
towards our own inner realms.

The servant is not generally remembered.
Candle in hand, waking his master, he crept
so certain reflections could outlive them both.
His was one of the shadows on the wall,
but his name does not come down to us.

In service, he is silhouette.


15 June 2012

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