Blots

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There’s a meaningless inkblot, and the others ask you what you think
you see, but when you tell them, they start arguing with you!
……………………………………………………. —Richard Feynman, physicist
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Jackson Pollack

in inkwell times when quills were used
(the ends of sharpened feathers split
which, while a writer worked, twitched
as when a bird would scratch an itch)

we etched our hieroglyphs in night-black licks
pausing intermittently to dip a quill’s split tip
into wells as black as pitch (though candlelit) 
and coaxed from shades the hairs we split

we spilled their tells upon a page
by sucking spells from pots of ink
to unseal what we thought it was about
we scribbled convoluted knots of think

now,  supposing we’ve come far
as we play licks in keyboard clicks,
we broadcast algorithmic tropes
d
ivining inkjet blots which we still hope 
will get at what it is that makes us tick

we gaze at screens of Rorschach strokes
dueling doubt in instant bits

Jim Culleny
3/4/17

Painting by Jackson Pollock
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