Dick is a poet, attorney, and political activist living in Vista, California.
Editor's Note: I rarely--actually, never--comment on readers' submissions, but I'm posting this in the swirl of reaction to the completion of the Mueller report, the contents of which are still largely unknown to the public. Though Dick wrote "The Math of the Matter" before the report was released, this poem, in its contrast between certainty and ambivalence, triggered the same unsettled feelings I've had as small, unsettling bits of the report have come to light.
Ancient arithmetic adores absolutes -
black & white, either-or, zero-sum
heaven & hell, a hedonist hierarchy
rabble reveling in reckless romance
brooding bums biting the bullet.
Arrogant arithmetic always adds and
subtracts seekers, saints, Sancho Panza
faithful to a fault, formidable friend
skeptic suffering the spiritual stuff
compelling clockwork confessions.
Advanced arithmetic acknowledges ambivalence -
dichotomy of duality, devilish dialectic
of forgiveness, fundamental free will,
mortal monks, materialist ministers,
residual gravity, one hand clapping.