Saturday, August 07, 2010

Hot Soup

I sat with Gnomus and the Hierophant yesterday in the NineSquare. There was coffee, tea and, for me, a dish of hot beef soup. It was a dish I had long enjoyed; of late, I have not had much of it. I have always enjoyed hot soup.

It's confession time, though. I do not like being in hot soup for bad reasons. I do not like people who put other people into hot soup for bad reasons. I will brave the hottest of soups for a friend; I will stand against injustice and tyranny; but I am, to some degree, not very brave.

Bravery, to me, is tempered and strengthened by reason. The lyrics from Man of La Mancha go:

To dream the impossible dream,
To fight the unbeatable foe,
To bear the unbearable sorrow,
To run where the brave dare not go,

To right the unrightable wrong,
to love pure and chaste from afar,
To try when your arms are too weary,
To reach the unreachable Star...

It's that line in the centre that is the point: these things are the extremes where the brave dare not go. And since I am not very brave, I suspect I will fall short of such Quixotic ideals. I can drink hot soup, but I cannot live in it.

For those of you who may have once thought that I was brave in any way, I have to say that grievous irritation can spur one to bravery, but it doesn't necessarily mean that one has vast reserves of courage. I wish I had, though. I sometimes would like to be a bit of a hero, but I don't think I am very much of one.

I think I am just me. No Don Quixote, nor Prince Hamlet, I. Just a Prufrock, like any anonymous other.

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