The Audacious Free Will of the Predestined Chrononaut

godheads
Godheads by Donato Giancola

 

The Audacious Free Will of the Predestined Chrononaut

Into the future we charge,
We travellers in time,
Past all of the past and into the future.
Tachyon trekkers at large,
In our own time,
From marcher to moocher –
But all of us heading in one direction,
Through the temporal intersection:
Into the future we barge our way,
Each and every day.

There’s some say the future already exists
And it does !  We’re in it today.
This is the future, as this is the past,
And the one hold the other in sway.
We may like to think that we’re free how we choose,
But however we choose it, the future arrives.
So best to ignore it and get on with living,
Before we have run out of lives.

We are the eyes of the future,
Spying on history,
Witnessing live the long-dead past.
We are the ones who are there,
And writing it down,
So the future can read it at last.
They pay us with hope, from their endless supply,
Or pay us with dread, if the price is too high.
The eyes of long-ago future will see
All of the past yet-to-be.

There’s some say free will is just an illusion
And lives are determined and fast.
That’s true for the future – their choices are narrowed
By what we do now in the past.
We may like to think that we’re free how we choose,
But however we choose it, we still live our lives.
So best to ignore it and get on with living,
Before all that future arrives.

 

 

Hybrid Vigour

light fantastic
The Light Fantastic by Tim White

 

Hybrid Vigour

English: a right bastard-son of a language –
A teenage two-fingers to logical sense.
With lucky-dip spelling – a standardless gauge,
An anarchist mang’ling our logical cage –
We think that we’ve captured it dry on the page
With pronouns and adverbs and grammars immense,
But this is one battle it’s folly to wage –
It breaks ev’ry rule in the end, so dispense\
With these thoughts we can tame it, or even condense –
There’s no passive mood in its imperfect tense.
It’s waiting to trip us, bamboozle, upstage,
And piss on our tenets in nat’ral defence.

English: a beautiful fluke of a toolkit,
And we are its masters, and never its slaves.
And each time we use it, it’s changed just a little bit,
Changed just a little – but should we permit ?
Yet if we can follow, it must be legit.
So don’t stem the growth and the sparkle it craves,
But keep it adapting, surprising, and fit –
And bring on the jargon and slang that ‘depraves’,
And don’t mourn the umlauts and genders in graves,
For this is precisely how Darwin behaves –
Red in its verbs and its nouns and its wit.
You can’t turn the tide, but you can ride its waves.

 

 

Ghoti

school of fish
Photo by Francesco Ungaro on Pexels.com

Ghoti

Language is languid, it’s lazy at heart –
Refusing to change and keeping its calm.
Sometimes it’s hazy and falling apart,
But let’s view its ticks as a charm.
Cos under the surface, its footings keep shifting,
It’s grammar gets shonky, it’s meanings keep drifting,
It’s making it up as it any-old wishes –
Till some fish are fish, but some fish are fishes.

Lingua Inglese

black and gray desk globe
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Lingua Inglese

It wasn’t a planned or a pre-destined course,
But brought on by conquest and culture and chance.
So half of the ears of the world are in reach,
And so many throats are alive to the word.
They flock to our phonemes that stream from our source,
Our syllables speak and their speakers advance;
For held on our tongues is the honey they teach,
That calls to the world and will always be heard.
But just as it rises, so shall this same force
Then favour another to make their tongues dance.
Our moment must pass – then our ripening peach
Shall sour their lips, with its stones spat and slurred.
Yet now all is golden, yet now they endorse
For all of its failings and spellings askance.
So use it and wisely and sweetly in speech,
For as long as its fluke is the fluke that’s preferred.

 

 

Grammar Schooling

grammar

 

Grammar Schooling

Don’t be a grammar poser,
That’s my advice,
Don’t be the prig who is overly-precise.
If it ain’t confusing,
Or clumsy in its choosing,
Then best to keep your counsel, and to keep your comments nice.
We hardly need a mentor
Who’s sticking in his snout –
You really ain’t the centre
That our language spins about.

You know, there’s words I cannot stand:
Like ethics-speak and business-bland,
Or phrases strained until they break…
But here’s the thing: that’s just my take !
There’s words I cannot stand to use,
There’s words that gag and words that bruise,
And words I hoped were dead and gone…
But here’s the thing: I don’t let on !

But I suppose
If language is the topic of the day,
Then gentle comments on our prose
May help in what we wish to say.
But here’s the crux:
They should be just suggestions, never rules;
For language is a lively flux
That shouldn’t be our master, but our tools.

And as for double negatives,
Those twice-as-minus negatives,
We don’t need regs to balance negs,
Ain’t never not no-way misunderstood.
Do we need to cite some Chaucer
Just to make them seem legit ?
I bet you glean their meaning good –
And so you should, if only you’d admit.

Language is adaptive and pragmatic,
Always looking for the new.
Language is a melting-pot schematic,
Always stirring up the stew.
And yes, it’s often needlessly erratic
And ambiguous, it’s true –
But also it’s the one thing democratic
That we each of us can do.

Its beauty, you see,
Is in its redundancy:
Multiple ways of saying the same.
It may not be logical,
Or pedagogical;
Boy, though, it’s prodigal – always aflame !

Language is free to use,
Language is hard to lose,
Language is yours and is mine and is theirs.
Conflicting, resolving,
Mutating, evolving –
We each are its authors, its subjects, its heirs.

So don’t be a grammar poser,
That’s my advice,
Don’t be the prig who will always tell us twice.
These rules you keep imploring
Are rules we keep ignoring –
And if we’re fine without them, well, they’re hardly worth the price.
These errors you detect
Are as dry as they are long –
You may be quite correct,
But you’re so so wrong.

 

 

Second-Hand Words

alphabet close up communication conceptual
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Second-Hand Words

English has many a-loanword;
Absurd a-name, as if to suggest
(Despite how much they’ve grown so blurred
And settled-in, so you’d never have guessed)
The day may come when they must pack
And once and for all be all given back.

French, please take the biscuit,
And Persian, fetch your cash,
Norse, collect your brisket
And Arabic, your sash.
Chinese, we have to unravel your silk,
And German, it’s time please to drink up your milk.

Greek, fly out your planet,
And Spanish, kill your roach,
Italian, shift granite,
And Hungarian, take coach.
Tongan, please, release taboo,
(Though we’ll never shift Tahitian tattoo).

So Hebrew, take Israeli, then,
And Dutch, stop pushing foist.
And Latin – now an alien
With all your words unvoiced.
We hand them back all bent-up and slurred,
And full of…thingy…you know…oh, what’s the word ?