The Poets

January 02, 2011

The Nihilist - A Creedal Poem

There are no Absolutes I see
Eternal Truths can hardly be
Nor can I think there is a Law
That governs heavy over me

Self-interest legislates my all
My mind to no man’s rule will fall
For I determine I am free
And will to power is my call


Of the Poem (Poetic Parameters and Notes):


Stanza: Quatrain
Meter: Tetrameter (i.e. 8 syllables per line)
Rhyme Scheme: aaba bbab (based on the gorgeously interlocking Rubaiyat stanza)


News flash! I’m not a nihilist, nor do I subscribe to the doctrines they espouse. I thought it would be interesting to ‘step’ into a perspective not my own and elaborate briefly, accurately, poetically, what that perspective endorses.

The idea came to me months ago after having read these lines, written to Thomas Wentworth Higginson in July of 1862, by Emily Dickinson:

When I state myself, as the Representative of the Verse - it does not mean - me - but a supposed person …
~ Dickinson (L, 2:412) ~

I thought to myself that it would be interesting to adopt a hypothetical perspective and bring it out in verse. Dickinson did this with astonishing beauty and creativity … and so I thought, inspired by her, I’d create poems based on particular creeds (whether philosophical, theological, and or whatever).

Beauty and Truth are always what I aim at while writing poetry- and always will. Notwithstanding, I thought that this kind of writing would strengthen the sinews of my imagination where poetry writing was concerned. And so, intermittently at any rate, I intend to script out what from now on I’ll call creedal poems (poems which may or may not emerge from what I personally believe- something akin to a good man acting out the role of a tyrant in a play).

I’m excited to see where this takes me. Hope you hang out …


John W. May said...

About the Picture

The picture of this post is of Friedrich Nietzsche, one of the most famous philosophers who advocated nihilistic ideas ... indeed, the phrase in the poem, will to power, is directly related to his philosophical position.

Kendra Lise said...

I just love how much exploring you do as a poet: you analyze, experiment AND experience - all with a talented eloquence. I truly enjoy your adventures with words.

PJ said...

I agree with miss. Kendra

As of April 9th, 2010