Poem: Newton’s Third Law


Newton’s Third Law

There is always that chance
that you have forgotten;
that the week of neglect,
of pretending to be a vegetable,
and putting your spiritual disciplines aside
have rendered you mute.

It has happened before.

But then the tide comes in
and the tide goes out,
and a new miracle parades in front of you,
ripples in the sand, abstract art
from a playful creator,

and you remember.
And begin
knowing that no matter what is erased,
something is created.

About this poem

This morning, after a week of vacation on Cape Cod, the woman I love said something about hoping she could remember how to do her job. I know the feeling. Whenever I am away from my writing or my art for any period of time, there is this brief moment of doubt when I begin again, this feeling that I won’t be able to do it.

That feeling has been part of my life for ages, and while I know it is balderdash, it still flickers until I start, and then it evaporates.

There was a period of my life when I did not write or create for years. Starting back up was frightful. But obviously, it worked out.

Newton’s Third Law of Motion states that when two bodies interact, they apply forces to one another that are equal in magnitude and opposite in direction. In other words, energy is never lost, simply balanced and equaled out. I believe the same is true of creativity.

I think of creativity as a spiritual discipline. The word “inspiration” comes from a root phrase that means “God-breathed”.

A weird mix for a poem’s inception. But there you are. My mind is like that sometimes.


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