Edgar Lee Masters: Ernest Hyde and Roger Heston

ERNEST HYDE

MY mind was a mirror:

It saw what it saw, it knew what it knew.

In youth my mind was just a mirror

In a rapidly flying car,

Which catches and loses bits of the landscape.

Then in time

Great scratches were made on the mirror,

Letting the outside world come in,

And letting my inner self look out.

For this is the birth of the soul in sorrow,

A birth with gains and losses.

The mind sees the world as a thing apart,

And the soul makes the world at one with itself.

A mirror scratched reflects no image—

And this is the silence of wisdom.

 

ROGER HESTON

OH many times did Ernest Hyde and I

Argue about the freedom of the will.

My favorite metaphor was Prickett’s cow

Roped out to grass, and free you know as far

As the length of the rope.

One day while arguing so, watching the cow

Pull at the rope to get beyond the circle

Which she had eaten bare,

Out came the stake, and tossing up her head,

She ran for us.

“What’s that, free-will or what?” said Ernest, running.

I fell just as she gored me to my death.

*** 

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