I Want to Participate More Fully

by Eric Chaet

I want to participate more fully in the human community
of course, I do—
I’m not a stone or cloud, not a seam of ore or a star—
a human being is complex in a way no other being is complex
no plant or amoeba or other animal however marvelous—
complex & charming & unpredictable & astounding
in ways science can so far
scarcely even mention, let alone measure—
my complexity wants to involve itself in others’ complexity
I want to love & laugh & explore ideas & even suffer with others
however much tyranny, submission, subterfuge, & self-deception
perfuse our thoughts & feelings & behavior
however much they color & sound thru all our situations.

I try not to commit evil, or even to be complicit
I try not to be assaulted, defrauded, or trapped
I try not to waste myself in illusions
no matter how many people believe in them
or how relentlessly I am urged to share such beliefs—
in these ways, I am inhibited from participating
as spontaneously as I would otherwise—
but I want to participate more fully in the human community—
of course I do.

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