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ON FEELINGS

G.E.H. Palmer standing on the summit of Mount Athos
feeling probably not much different from
me, aged 12, climbing up Slieve Donard,
feeling fulfilment - nothing to compare of course
with Hitler
1940 in the railway carriage in Compiègne,
Triumph of the Will, feelings rushing through
whole populations, feelings of delight, of joy, like the wind
rushing through a field of corn, that life is worth living, we've won!
We've won the match, we've won the war, we've found God.
Everything is simple, everything is clear -

Feelings of the town commuter living
out in the country listening
to the birds singing and seeing
the buds appear on the trees, feeling
holy and fulfilled like the tourist
walking the streets of an old town -
feelings of the cinema-goer, deeply moved,
of the concert-goer, opera-goer, weeping over
Mimi's consumption, Madame
Butterfly's despair - excitement
of a video-game - excitement at the prospect
of a new model aeroplane,
a mobile phone, a beautiful dress - These are
waves that pass over us - water that
can be cleansing, but
has no solidity until
mixed
and churned over
with the earth
of the body
in the brick
factory
of the heart. 

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