Simplicities of being

Simplicities of being

Behind the complexities of life
         there are the radiant simplicities
the single cells that divide
         and the multiplicities of divisions
that lead to the complexity
         of our singleness
and to the robust biochemistry
         of carbon and hydrogen and oxygen
the supple atomic chemistry of the rose
         of the robin’s winter song
and the dandelion that dances
         in the summer breeze
not to mention her pale skin stretched
         against her high cheekbones

flushed by the fine flow
         of her handsome blood

And so within the complexity of our minds
           and the million upon million cells
that keep our consciousness together
         it’s the simple things we hanker for
—the notes of a pure Chopin melody
         move us like no other
so too Matisse colours and textures and shapes
         in fact the simplicities of any medium
however complex their contrivance

We are creatures of simple tastes
         happiest when our lives are focused
on the essence of what it is to be—
         a stroll in the green park 
or a day on the beach

         lived in and for the moment
the simplicity of the human touch
         the subtle sensitivity of skin on skin
and the engaging warmth of word 
         upon word upon word

the tender and irreducible mathematics 
         of love : that essential integer
the couple that lies behind
         every single simplicity

John Lyons