Mind Freeze

Mind Freeze

There is new news all day long, and every single minute,
radio and Internet constantly immerse us in it.
On our televisions, they repeat and repeat
every warlike action, every athletic feat.

We know before their spouses do when politicians slip,
view every starlet’s nightclub spree via a Youtube clip.
Stock market scams and Ponzi schemes and other news that scares
as big guys pick our pockets in order to line theirs.

Sans Blackwater and Monsanto, we would be better off,
but we’d still be deluged by news of Enron and Madoff!
We consult Wikipedia to see what it might say,
keep up with the Kardashians a dozen times a day.

It’s hard enough to keep abreast of those they might be bedding,
let alone to know the date of their most recent wedding.
Who has gained a pound or two or who’s the most hirsute?
This information makes our lives a Trivial Pursuit.

There are so many details that come at us day and night,
filling up our minds until our craniums feel tight.
We’re stuffed with sound bites, news clips and every TV show
until it is inevitable. Something’s got to blow!

No wonder that we can’t remember names of our best friends
or what we came out shopping for or how that movie ends.
We can’t remember song lyrics or what we meant to do.
We came in here for something. Was it scissors, paint or glue?

I am forgetting everything I always used to know.
Every mental process has just gotten kind of slow.
It’s taking me much longer now to ponder each decision—
a factor that the younger folks consider with derision.

Like-aged friends agree with me, for they all feel the same.
They all have minds stuffed just as full, and we know what to blame.
There’s too much information, and like any stuffed-full larder,
to locate things within them gets progressively harder.

If we could sort our minds out the same way that we pack—
putting unimportant stuff way at the very back
and all the more important things in front and at the top,
we wouldn’t have to search our minds and wouldn’t have to stop

to figure out the names of things or places or of folks,
and then we wouldn’t be the brunt of all their aging jokes;
but it seems that we can’t do this so perhaps the answer is
to just turn off the TV news and gossip of show biz.

The scandals and the killings—all the bad things that astound us—
we’d leave behind to concentrate on happenings around us.
We’d notice more the little things in our immediate world:
the spider in the spider web, the bud that’s tightly furled

and notice when it opens, and the dragonfly that’s on it
and take a picture of it, or perhaps construct a sonnet.
See the children who are hungry and instead of our obsessing
on matters where we’re powerless, instead bestow a blessing

on all those things around us where we have the power to act.
When we see whatever needs doing, to take action and react.
Perhaps then all the horrid facts that rise up in the mind
will settle to the bottom and then all of us will find

the keys we’ve lost, our glasses, and remember why we came
into this room and how to recall every person’s name.
And all the time we save we’ll spend on the important things
and feel the sense of purpose helping others always brings.

The world is too much with us with its bad news of all kinds,
and all this information simply freezes up our minds.
Perhaps with much less input, there would be less to astound us
and we could concentrate on what’s important close around us.


The prompt word today is athletic. This is a rewrite of a poem written three years ago.

13 thoughts on “Mind Freeze

  1. Marilyn Armstrong

    If only we could organize life like that … important stuff where we can quickly find it and file the rest of the stuff in the archives. However — I don’t know about you, but I don’t have a good search engine, so anything in the archives would be lost forever!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Christine Goodnough

    Totally agree. Of course we threw out of TV in 1975. 😉

    I believe a person develops a tolerance for what they can handle. When we had a TV. I could watch murder and mayhem without a thought, but since we tossed our TV — and violence has gotten so much more graphic — I can’t handle what I see on the screen if I happen to see one. In fact I’ve gotten so soft I couldn’t bear to watch my cat destroy a mourning dove when he caught one the other day, so I intervened and the bird flew off — much to Angus’s dismay.)

    We do keep up with the news via internet newspapers. I don’t believe anyone should be clueless. I’ve met folks who have TV and watch all the time, but are completely clueless as to what’s happening in the real world. One woman told me, “I never watch the news.” I don’t think there’s an excuse for such apathy.

    My lack of media awareness may be why I still think Trump deserves some respect as President of the USA. “You just DO respect your leader, right?” But I haven’t heard him giving his speeches on TV or followed his policies so in that respect I’m clueless — and try to remember that. I realize a lot of the media is against everything he says or does and media folks always have some agenda. We heard from a well known Canadian newsman that honesty isn’t a big factor in US political news reports, so I don’t give them a lot of credence.

    I don’t have a clue about stars like the Kardashians — except through some comment I may read on someone’s blog. But I get the picture. 🙂

    So I’m with you. Do what you can to improve the world around you. Enjoy the beauties of each day. I’ve worked in nursing homes and know how suddenly some folks find themselves plopped in front of a TV screen from one meal to the next, often uncomprehending of what they see.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. lifelessons Post author

      I don’t have TV either, Christine, and haven’t for most of the past 30 years, but I see enough on the Internet and what I read on blogs to know Trump is a dangerous disaster. It is bad enough to have a misogynistic fool in the Whitehouse without having a sociopath as well. I don’t ever watch news reports…just videos of what he himself has said and written as well as testimony of men, some of whom he himself appointed. It is an embarrassment and a horrible tragedy that such a dark side of America came out and elected him. Unless our other elected government leaders get in line to ride us of him, I really do believe he could bring about the end of the world as we know it as do most intelligent people I know. I don’t thing a position itself warrants respect when a tyrant and a fool is in it. (Ha. Do you think I stated that strongly enough? Not trying to bring you down, but I’d certainly like to bring him down.)


      1. Christine Goodnough

        Well, if one goes by blog post ratings, it seems most bloggers says he’;s the way you’ve described him. I hope you’re stretching it when you say “a dark side” elected him. It’d scare me if half the American populace (give or take 5%) was either dark or deluded. :()
        What amazes me is that he doesn’t give up. If people were saying so many things about my leadership, I’d gladly resign. However, if he resigns, who’s going to take his place? (Which is maybe why he got elected? Lack of a truly viable alternative?)


      2. lifelessons Post author

        The problem was the people who didn’t vote because they said they wouldn’t vote for Hillary. Combined with those who were still pissed over a black man being elected and those who would never vote for a woman, those who believed what he told them in spite of the contrary evidence and those billionaire cronies who could pour millions into his campaign for their own benefit, not to mention the Russian connections–that was enough.


      3. Christine Goodnough

        I had one more thought on your last H-vs-D comment, while standing under the shower yesterday — a great place for inspiration to strike. 🙂

        We tend to look at this as an issue of the two, Trump or Clinton, and their respective personalities and/or speeches, platforms, agendas. My thought was, this election really mirrored the division in the American public. The thinking/agenda of the Right versus the Left.

        Hillary’s Left supporters being “accept everything” proponents, often athiests, the LGBTN community, the intelligensia, The Right being tradition/status quo fans, religious (Christians, Jews, probably Muslims) and folks with any particular moral scruples or bias. Including the “dark side” you mentioned: anti-gay, racists, misogynists. Strange bedfellows: the former would condemn the latter — but they would both reject Clinton because of her “abandon all divisive beliefs” statements and perceived threats of enforced daycare to re-program everybody’s children.

        Seems to me this election simply shows up this gap that has been steadily widening over the years. The Left, tending to be the more vocal, wants the Right to abandon beliefs and come over to the “tolerance for all” position; the Right says, “We’re tolerating too much already!” The Left won the last round; the Right won this one — and the Left is screaming mad. Of course both sides are RIGHT! 🙂 So will Americans ever find a leader that can unite both sides?


      4. lifelessons Post author

        I think that is a thoughtful analysis, Christine and what bothers me most about affairs right now–Not that two leaders are so different, but that it has exposed such a nasty side of our culture and all this violence seems to be like lancing a boil. When will the poison be outed and will we return to a healthy and sane status?

        Liked by 1 person

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