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Pride Justified

I

Which is better, taking pride
in complying with the law
or feeling guilty after
you transgress it?
Pride’s a sin, but still the better
course because the other means
no matter how you feel,
the law’s transgressed.

II

Which is the best, feeling pride to obey
the law, or shame after failing?
Pride’s a great sin, but the price some must pay
to live their lives without jailing.

III


Any fool can break
the law.  It takes a great one
to obey with pride.

IV

Sage conforms - secret smile.
(09-06-2016, 10:31 PM)dukealien Wrote: [ -> ]what comes next in the progress of compression - senryu, then a five-word epigram Smile ?

You could leave the title and take the body out:


Pride Justified

[unbodied]

  - - -
pride is always best after a good transgression
there's always not having pride at all. which isn't necessarily impossible, just one heck of a ride
(Quartet)

Pride Justified

I

Which is better, taking pride
in complying with the law
or feeling guilty after
you transgress it?
Pride’s a sin, but still the better
course because the other means
no matter how you feel,
the law’s transgressed.

II

Which is the best, feeling pride to obey
the law, or shame after failing?
Pride’s a great sin, but the price some must pay
to live their lives without jailing.

III


Any fool can break
the law.  It takes a great one
to obey with pride.

IV

Sage conforms - secret smile.



Lots of challenging observations in comments there.  (It would be more challenging to make the four share plot as well as theme.)

@rayheinrich - almost.
(09-08-2016, 12:26 AM)dukealien Wrote: [ -> ]Lots of challenging observations in comments there.  (It would be more challenging to make the four share plot as well as theme.)

    "Share the plot" sounds like a good idea... until you grasp the amount of work it would take. Besides, I like this one, its purity.

    (I love the thrill of breaking the law, the pride that comes with not getting caught. Now there's a pride-compatible sin.)
I wonder how much more difficult the nature of the subject would be if that law were capitalized.
(09-08-2016, 01:27 PM)RiverNotch Wrote: [ -> ]I wonder how much more difficult the nature of the subject would be if that law were capitalized.

    An utterly delicious idea. Why worry about plot, when you can trot in a whole galaxy of Christian ideology?

(09-09-2016, 06:29 AM)rayheinrich Wrote: [ -> ]
(09-08-2016, 01:27 PM)RiverNotch Wrote: [ -> ]I wonder how much more difficult the nature of the subject would be if that law were capitalized.

    An utterly delicious idea. Why worry about plot, when you can trot in a whole galaxy of Christian ideology?


Capitalizing "[L]aw" could add some richness/ambivalence, probably more than these simple verses can bear.  When I see "Law" capitalized mid-sentence, it evokes Judaic/Mosaic, European (specifically English) Common or statute law, Indian sub-continent Buddhist (karma) or Hindu (wheel), or Sinic (Confucian propriety/Rituals)*.  In ordinary reading the context would establish which, but in short verse the reading of "Law" would set the context for everything else.  (I was thinking statute law, mainly.)

*"[L]aw" does not bring sharia to mind, for me, anyway.
(09-09-2016, 10:47 PM)dukealien Wrote: [ -> ]Capitalizing "[L]aw" could add some richness/ambivalence, probably more than these simple verses can bear.  When I see "Law" capitalized mid-sentence, it evokes Judaic/Mosaic, European (specifically English) Common or statute law, Indian sub-continent Buddhist (karma) or Hindu (wheel), or Sinic (Confucian propriety/Rituals)*.  In ordinary reading the context would establish which, but in short verse the reading of "Law" would set the context for everything else.  (I was thinking statute law, mainly.)

*"[L]aw" does not bring sharia to mind, for me, anyway.

Yes, indeed.  All those other religious and sectarian accumulations...
I guess, reflexively, subconsciously, I think first of Christian.  This is because
I grew up in a Christian environment; and the beliefs that I don't believe in were
predominantly formed by it.

But, changing the subject, I really have to disagree with: "probably more than
these simple verses can bear".  Haven't they engendered this discussion?
While we can certainly imagine more eloquent, stately poems having this affect,
I bet they would all be much longer. Yours possesses the elegance of simplicity.

So... pretty damn cool dude.

just mercedes

I like this - pride in the law of diminishing returns? Smile But I feel guilt when I feel pride. That's the problem with being brought up by a Presbyterian mother.