Of Appearance

For how many years have you been told the old adage, “The clothes make the man”? This week, appearances are the topic for our little dose of wisdom. Brought about by seeing several poignant examples over the course of the past week of truly small-minded people treating others cruelly for things inherently shallow.

Certainly, it would not be sensible of me to say that appearance plays no part in how most people interact with the world – it is no less than the nature of man that what we see does have input on how we react to a person. It affects it. Yet it should not dominate our reaction. What makes us human should be our ability to rise above first impressions, shallow inferences, to see what lies within before we make our judgments. After all, the clothes may change, but that doesn’t change the person.

To demonstrate this, our latest quote of the week comes from an old favorite of mine: Neil Gaiman. Many among you may be familiar with his “Sandman” series, among his many works, and if so, you’ll probably recognize this one:

“It has always been the prerogative of children and half-wits to point out that the emperor has no clothes. But the half-wit remains a half-wit, and the emperor remains an emperor.” ~Neil Gaiman, “Sandman”

To demonstrate, I give you the many faces of Chris, that is to say, me…a lot of different mes there, in some strange, some normal forms…but do I really change? Outwardly, perhaps, but the silly little writer has always remained…

Armani Pride

Armani, sir, don’t you mind

The scales underneath the silk—

My tongue is worth a hundred souls,

My pen a thousand more.

The world, my throne, self-carved—

I think mere mortal knowing

Might yet be deigned to see

Some tracest memory

Of wealth, innumerable, that lies

Within this fairest grace.

Before the pride, yet rides The Fall,

One-winged angel recompense

With Hell and Fire resolute

This passion, wild, divine

Will never bow nor know

Another master but its own—

Smile through the pain,

For you and thee are nothing but

This maddened laughter spouts

From believer, knower, all.

Cast me down, you break me down,

It is of your own pathetic drives—

Kill it, beat it, des-e-crate it,

Such a base begotten crave

Of jealousy, and raunched salivation

Of those below the knowing

Of this manicured salvation—

All I need, the dollar, plastered

Forming yet eternal

The foundations of my history.

* Another poem for the wonderful Monday Poetry Potluck, as hosted by Jingle Poetry, and those lovely poets Amanda and Kavita! The theme this week: the Seven Deadly Sins! Lust was appealing, I must admit, but then pride came along in mind, and low and behold, these words sprouted–hope you enjoy.