Small Madness

why do I walk
on the asphalt
at high noon
in the heat
of a georgian summer?

because it burns,
but the pain is bearable,
and I’m reminded
that I’m the sum of
billions of parts
(some of which wail
in agony at the experimentation).

but I’m more than this sum;
for though the pain
tests my soles, true —
there is a spirit in me
that revels in this,
what many might call a small madness.

and it is this thing, “I,”
greater than the sum of the parts,
which has already won
before it has begun
to run the gauntlet.

why do I walk
on the asphalt
at high noon
in the heat
of a georgian summer?

you might ask me,
why do I do anything at all?
for the answer is the same:
the soul is its own master.
and when it chooses to suffer
small pains for great gains
it grows but the stronger.

and the wondrous thing
about this course in human growth?
it has no end.

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