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Ode To The Simpleton

by Chris Sorrenti

if ignorance be truly bliss
then envy the simpleton
for all he is
will never be
in knowing not the
quagmires of intellect nor
romance’s heartbreak complexity
free of division
‘tween class and stranger
tomorrow’s challenges
will not weigh him down
to greet any and all
with a toddler’s innocence
smile permanently fixtured
upon his face
ne’re to realize those who slight him
for what he isn’t
might have been

© 2006

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Posted on 05/11/2006
Copyright © 2023 Chris Sorrenti

Member Comments on this Poem
Posted by Rula Shin on 05/11/06 at 05:58 PM

What a great rhythmic feel and language fit for the wise. You are so very right, can a fool ever know he is a fool, for if he realizes then he is no fool. In the same way, can a wise man ever concede being wise when he realizes his own foolishness? hahahaha Indeed, ignorance IS BLISS and it is only the one eyed man in the land of the blind that can SEE the horror of the situation while the rest happily dream their lives instead of LIVING their refined dream. The question is, how is the the one eyed man going to approach? As KING over the blind, cursed to SEE and not to ACT, reacting in his misery as a mediocre tyrant...or is he his own KING, cursed to LIVE as no other, despite the meaninglessness, imbued with the courage and passion? That's what I saw. Very nicely done!

Posted by Gregory O'Neill on 05/11/06 at 06:09 PM

Beware of false knowledge; it is more dangerous than ignorance.

Posted by Rula Shin on 05/11/06 at 06:12 PM

By the way, this reminded me of "Flowers for Algernon" - what a powerful and poingnant story that was.

Posted by Maureen Glaude on 05/11/06 at 07:25 PM

Like one of my favourite novels, "Tim" by Colleen McCullough, this makes a statement I've often found to be true. It seems in that innocence they are such winners, in joy, and also give so much love.

Posted by Kristina Woodhill on 05/11/06 at 11:17 PM

So very true. "to greet any and all with a toddler's innocence" What a fine place to be!! Thank you for this.

Posted by Ashok Sharda on 05/12/06 at 03:31 AM

Well, its the genius alone, who knows where he is, on this ladder of evolution, because he can SEE down though he is unconcerned.Mediocre and simpleton assume they are on the top unable to see above, presuming others to be below. This is the irony of being and there is no scale to measure the height. hahahaah But as Rula Shin said, the one who realizes his fool is the only one who can SEE and start ascending this ladder..

Posted by Karl Waldbauer on 05/12/06 at 04:26 AM

I'm glad to have read this, Chris. You've caused me to once again consider what is wisdom and just who has it. Thanks for an excellent read.

Posted by Elizabeth Jill on 05/12/06 at 04:43 AM

Well, me too! me too! I simply (!) love the flow and the truth. The song "Lather" comes playing through my mind with this...an innocent happy... well, simpleton!.
Plus, all the comments have a feeling of a coffehouse community think-aloud...which is delightful!

Posted by Christina Bruno on 05/12/06 at 05:14 AM

don't we all wish we were this person? good job, as always

Posted by Joan Serratelli on 05/12/06 at 09:10 PM

I have thought about this concept many times, and agree with your observation! GREAT write- very enjoyable read.

Posted by Peter Humphreys on 05/13/06 at 09:46 AM

Some year's ago there was a song by Phil Coulter that captured these feelings wonderfully. It is "Scorn not his Simplicity" and in Ireland the version by the late Luke Kelly is magnificent if you get to hear it. A good poem, than you.

Posted by Sandy M. Humphrey on 05/15/06 at 03:49 PM

oh to greet everything with toddlers innocence, there are days when it would be truly a blessing to be so childlike instead of childish....brilliant and thought provoking.

Posted by Vere Mantratriad on 05/15/06 at 07:23 PM

One of my friends used to have a saying: "if ignorance is bliss, then I'm orgasmic".. nicely done.

Posted by Sarah Graves on 05/16/06 at 12:46 AM

I like the tone of this piece.. it speaks to many. You seem to have an understanding of human nature..

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