A place for reflection and introspection, communication and thoughtful conversation.
Wednesday, 21 October 2009
“Education would be much more effective if its purpose was to ensure that by the time they leave school every boy and girl should know how much they do not know, and be imbued with a lifelong desire to know it.” - William Haley
Yesterday in the train coming back from work I sat in front of two young hooligans. Loud louts who shouted inanities and swore, and terrorised my fellow commuters, some of whom changed seats to distance themselves from them. I stayed put, fascinated by these uneducated dregs of humanity that spoke of gaol and brushes with police, boasted of drunken brawls and were proud of their illiteracy as they tried, but could hardly read a forgotten newspaper on the seat beside them. Their cackling laughter and vile manner, their foul mouths and knocked out teeth their scabby faces and dirty fingernails aroused pity in me for their wasted young lives…
I am not talking of the murderer Whose heinous acts have subjugated and perverted his humanity. I am not referring to the swindler, Whose keen mind is twisted into self-serving deception. I am not even speaking of the addict, Whose weakness of the spirit wastes both mind and body. I choose even not to mention the gambler Whose passion leads to ruin for himself and family…
The wasted lives I sing of Are much more mundane, more commonplace and more prevalent. The wasted lives of countless millions Whose petty mind remains unschooled, Who fail to take the proffered opportunity. Those cripples of the intellect Who lead a life of trivial ennui, Suspended between a bookless, thoughtless void And the junk of popular “culture” and vacuous television. Whose highest pursuit is a drunken revel, Lust without love, sex without affection; Or maybe the pointless violence of gangs Clashing over competing football teams.
My song of wasted lives is a dirge Of unrealised potential, And unseized possibility, Of nascent achievement quashed: Like the stirrings of an embryo Aborted before it is allowed to perfect to birth.
The wasted lives cry out In richest countries and resplendent cities The very cornerstones of civilisation. These lives cry out like the howls of savage beasts Amidst the libraries and the galleries and the museums, The concert halls and the lecture halls, the universities.
So shall the human race die out: Not in a nuclear holocaust, Nor in a terrible pandemic. Not in a warring bang, But rather in the whimper of inertia, Of the wasted lives of the multitudes Who will cause humanity to peter out in degeneracy…
I have been blogging daily on this platform for several years now. It is surprising that I have persisted as the world is changing and "microblogging" is now the norm. I blog to amuse myself, make comment on current affairs, externalise some of my creativity, keep notes on things that interest me, learn something new and to surprise myself with things that I discover about this wonderful, and sometimes crazy, world we live in.
I sometimes get the impression that I am on a soapbox delivering a monologue, so your comments are welcome.