Poems, Wislawa Szymborska’s Style

Who gets big prizes, renown, matter: they steer humanity. So Dylan got the Nobel in literature for selling records of excellent harmonies about getting stoned… A ridiculous fact. Wislawa Szymborska made poems just like what follows, but with her own philosophy, often highly pragmatic.  She got the Nobel for them. Let me do the same… with my own version of wisdom….


Some feel dogs would evolve, should humanity disappear.

They write books about it,

Peer reviewed papers.

Yes, dogs would evolve.

Should wolves survive humanity,

Dogs would evolve into wolves’ dinner.

Wolves are incredibly more clever and

Creative than dogs are.

A collared wolf recently

Visited most of Northern California,

All the way to the Central Coast.


Uncertainty is a lure,

And most precious.

Certainty is a beauty,

Fresh with strident colors.

And most dangerous.


Wanting to save humanity?

What for? 

How pretentious.

Define humanity first.

Ah, can’t do it?

Save your mind for what may be addressed.


Socrates suggested self-examination.

Yes. How?

He had been tested.

On the battlefield.

“We know ourselves only as far as we’ve been tested.”

― Wisława Szymborska, Map: Collected and Last Poems

... and if we don’t test ourselves much,

We don’t know much.



“It turns out I was right.

Nothing came of it,

For me personally,

But quite well for 40 thieves,

Many of them are academic.

I told an academic friend.

She said:

They have to feed their families,

You can’t reproach them,

To steal your stuff. 

And I agree,

But still,

Should we let ourselves,

Be dominated by thieves? 


And I agree:


Yes human understanding.

All what counts.


True love

Proves the point:

Humanity’s highest value,

Humanity’s greatest characteristic,


For understanding’s sake.


Somewhere out there the world must have an end,

Some say,

As if they were God,

The Dog in the sky,

Who doesn’t exist.

After all,

Heavens turned out to be a thin sphere,

Of not much substance


Animals have mentalities,

Just as humans do. 

Even rattlesnakes.

I have come across quite a few,

Some were irascible, angry,

Unwilling to slither into thick bushes,

Preferring to block,

The one and only narrow path,

They prefer a fight to death,

With the climber who had to get home.

They didn’t get to write a poem about it.

Others were careful,

Putting life and the pursuit 

Of ground squirrels,

Above matters of pride and strike.

Panthers have been known to become,

Human killers.

One in India killed more than 200.

Recently in the San Francisco Bay Area,

A coyote became a serial attacker of humans,

Biting many, sneaking on his victims,

Some children.

Identified by DNA, he was neutralized,

As Special Forces love to put it.

Some whales carry their dead child,

For many days,

Elephants often do this too. 


Like humans are often not sure.

Today my daughter saw an antelope

In the forest.

She is used to them in zoos.

This one had a different mentality.

At a fabulous speed,

She made great leap in the air,

Landing with huge pounding of four hoofs,

And then rebounding,

As if projected by phenomenal springs,

Up above the trunks.

We were supposed to be impressed,

And we were,

As intended.

And why such an impressive demonstration of power,

In a forest of her kind is hunted,

By men with rifles?

Because she knew well I was not with gun,

But with a volubile little girl.

Thus yes,

Wislawa Szymborska,

When you claim that,

There is nothing more animal-like

than a clear conscience

on the third planet of the Sun,

You just devolve into a specieist,

With not enough experience,

Of the real planet,

To know any better…

Hence more prehistoric,

Than our prehistoric ancestors.


Patrice Ayme.

Planet apocalypse: even before they burn, California forests are literally collapsing, eaten away by the CLIMATE CALAMITY. Picture 8/8/2021, High Sierra Nevada. This is along a trail, visible on the right. It is like that, on hundreds of miles….Most of these trees just died and collapsed in the preceding weeks… Ready to burn now….

Tags: , , , ,

5 Responses to “Poems, Wislawa Szymborska’s Style”

  1. pshakkottai Says:

    Very nice! And Hindus called Upanishads the wisdom of Vedas meaning “under-sitting” which means “under-standing” in English! All life is endowed with consciousness and any animal can evolve to replace man as we did replace dinosaurs if the earth goes up in smoke.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. brodix Says:

    Let them steal your grenades. You still have the pins.


  3. Gmax Says:

    Very nice


  4. Ambiallet Says:

    Poesie is what we need. Yes give us poems. What is it with all the downed trees?


What do you think? Please join the debate! The simplest questions are often the deepest!

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: