Philosophy without Words
[now with words!]

December 11, 2017

# 1

from a magazine about Poland in the late sixties

It's a complicated emoticon.

Everyone points in a different direction
but in the same way.
But everyone is pointing.
Is anyone right?
Is everyone?

They are if they are pointing at something, or reality, or what interests them

Who are they to give me directions?
(Perhaps I asked.)
Do I have to take them?

# 2

from Realist Magaizne in the sixties

All we have to do is turn around.
Is that even possible?
Perhaps our cell turn with us.

Who made this strange cell?

The view from behind frightens me.
Or bores me.

# 3

found on the Internet

Sunset on a lake with a few pilings,
the remnants of a dock.

Or is it sunrise?
Is the dock being constructed in random parts
by a zen monk.

Assumptions are always being made,
as are understandings
and resonances.

If this philosophy? The first two pictures at least involved themes of knowledge and truth. this one, not so much.
Or is it art?
Art has limited expectations of argumentation. The experience is often the end result.

# 4

found on the Internet

Vague memories are stirred of Hans Christian Anderson's The Steadfast Soldier

But who is this stiff man, dressed in tophat and tails, sailing in a paper boat?
He is not paddling.
Is he happy? content? resigned? waiting?
Things could be, and will be, much worse.
As for now, he is not going anywhere.

He might be just a few feet from a beach.

# 5

Saul Steinberg

The idealism of a perfect world.
We dream of simplistic perfection
And clean simple labels.

[ back ]