I Think I Can, Maybe
The spirit is willing, but the mind is weak; weird
but true this morning. I’m both anxious and pensive;
by turns eager to begin and then frustrated,
not knowing where to start. Then, at once, elated,
inspired – the mind filled with thoughts bright and witty.
I roll up my sleeves, and now the thoughts seem stupid.
It happens all the time – good thoughts turning stupid
the moment I get to work on them. It’s just weird
how those thoughts that once seemed amazingly witty
turn so quickly into mush. That’s why I’m pensive.
Each time the light bulb goes on and I’m elated,
it’s dimmed by my effort, and I get frustrated.
The harder I work, the more I am frustrated,
knowing now that my brilliant insights were stupid.
But no matter, with each idea I’m elated,
though inevitably these mental gems are weird;
bright ideas that aren’t too bright. So, I get pensive,
pondering the thoughts I once thought were so witty
but which turned out to be not even half-witty.
In fifteen minutes, I’m thoroughly frustrated,
and so agitated, I cannot be pensive
any longer, convinced that I must be stupid.
Ten minutes later, and this is what is so weird,
I have another thought, and I am elated,
sure that this one bright thought will keep me elated,
and once scrawled on paper it will still be witty.
A foolish dream, I know, and just a little weird,
since my thoughts and dreams always leave me frustrated.
Well, not always. But most of them turn out stupid.
So what is the value of me being pensive?
Well, here’s the thing: If I were never pensive,
I’d never have the thoughts that make me elated.
So what if most of my ideas are real stupid,
and only a half-wit would say that they’re witty,
and trying to nurture them leaves me frustrated.
Sometimes, not often, they work. People laugh. It’s weird.
Often I get stupid when I’m pensive
and it seems weird to be giddily elated,
thinking I’m witty and then getting frustrated.