We have forgotten love, and Sat lonely beside each other. We have eaten together, Lonely behind our plates, we Have hidden behind children, We have slept together in A lonely bed. Now my heart Turns toward you, awake at last, Penitent, lost in the last Loneliness. Speak to me. Talk To me. Break the black silence.
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Today we hear a great deal about Organizational Men, Mass Culture, Conformity, the Lonely Crowd, the Power Elite and its Conspiracy of Mediocrity. We forget that the very volume of this criticism is an indication that our society is still radically pluralistic. Not only are there plenty of exceptionalists who take exception to the stereotyping of the mass culture but that very string of epithets comes from a series of books that have been recent best-sellers, symptoms of a popular, living tradition of dissent from things as they are.
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A white crowned night sparrow sings as the moon sets. Thunder growls far off. Our campfire is a single light. Amongst a hundred peaks and waterfalls. The manifold voices of falling water Take all night. Wrapped in your down bag Starlight on you cheeks and eyelids Your breath comes and goes In a tiny cloud in the frosty night. Ten thousand birds sing in the sunrise. Ten thousand years revolve without change. All this will never be again.
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The moral issues with which Marcus struggles would be, as he points out, unchanged whether the universe were mechanical and devoid of meaning or value or ruled by deity or Providence; whether the will were in fact free or determined; whether there were or were not a future life, or any even fugitive rewards and punishments at all.
The dumping of the mentally ill, full of these new psychiatric drugs, into the streets is a scandal. It's been carried furthest in New York, where whole sections of the decayed Upper West Side are being filled with pensioners and psychotic patients on stelazine, lithium carbonate, and everything else under the sun. They can't diagnose the patient, so they give him the whole psychiatric pharmacopoeia at once, and he walks around in a psychotic trance beautifully painted all over with petrochemicals.
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Now I know surely and forever, However much I have blotted our Waking love, its memory is still there. And I know the web, the net, The blind and crippled bird. For then, for One brief instant it was not blind, nor Trapped, not crippled. For one heart beat the Heart was free and moved itself. O love, I who am lost and damned with words, Whose words are a business and an art, I have no words. These words, this poem, this Is all confusion and ignorance. But I know that coached by your sweet heart, My heart beat one free beat and sent Through all my flesh the blood of truth.
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