How, will, should, David Myatt be remembered? Premature and recent rumors of his death struck a chord with some of us who – whatever our age, whatever our place of dwelling, and whatever our political inclinations – have somehow in some manner (positive or negative) been affected by his life and by his writings.
But someday, and perhaps soon – give or take a few months, a few years, or perhaps a decade or more – he, now a reclusive uncommunicative mystic, will most assuredly be gone from this our mortal realm. So how should, will, Myatt best be remembered?
For myself I choose his poetry. Or rather that compilation of his poems – titled Relict – which he himself compiled. For there is humanism, a numinosity, the ethos of our Western civilization, presenced in such semi-autobiographical poems as are collected there. As well as the quintessence of what, post-2012, became his mystical, his very personal, his decidedly Western, ‘philosophy of pathei-mathos’.
Thus if he is to be remembered it should, perhaps, be for such so very human, so very civilized, poems. For such poems are such an eloquent rebuke to those who have attempted – or who for private or for political reasons may well continue to attempt – to besmirch him.
Clouds in the Sky
The one of understanding, feeling the timeless nature of Existence,
Does not exhort, nor preach, nor hold fast to any dogma:
They are Silent,
Pointing to the clouds in the sky.
For each must find their own goal, in their own time:
They who understand only guide those who earnestly seek,
Those whose time for understanding has come.
The tranquillity of life is in understanding of self,
For thereby comes acceptance of the illusion of Existence:
And they who are tranquillity become thus all life,
Realizing the folly of action breeding violence.
Yet they who are all life are Being, become –
Waiting with tranquillity for the coming of death.
With discarding of self comes the realization of eternity bringing sadness
And with the realization of eternity comes the tranquillity of compassion.
For they who are compassion merge with all existence
And live thus in the wisdom of sorrow bringing tears.
Yet they who cry know also the laughter of the moment:
Blown away by the wind like the clouds in the sky.
Thus does the seeker of the goal that is no goal
Realize the unwisdom of words:
Understanding wind in clouds in the sky.
Those who transcend self by their many errors of experience –
Understanding thus the serenity of silence –
Need no outward chattel
For they are richer than all the riches of Earth.
Thus do they who quest after transcendence become still,
A falling leaf turned Autumn brown
Following the wind of the moment:
Neither clinging to, nor striving against,
The force of existence ever a dream in the end.
They who are still
Seek not the folly of the wisdom of worship,
Nor the secrecy of shrines:
For their temple is a swaying branch in a glade of trees
Resting on a high hill beneath the wind-blown clouds in the sky;
And their prayer is Silence.
(Written 1975 CE)
The Sun, the city, to wear such sadness down
For I am only one among the many
Where a night-of-dreams becomes unreal
With all that is human living, dwelling,
Faster slower slowing grateful hateful hoping loving
No Time to relay the inner rush of sorrow
That breaks, broken, by some scheming need to-be
Since the 1-train, conveying, is here to grace me
But there are moments, to still,
When – tasks, duty – done
That inner quietness betrays
So that I sit where
The Sun of English Summer
Would could bring me down
There where the meadow grass had grown
Green greener drier keener
And farm’s field by hedge with scent
Would keep me still but sweating –
No cider to induce
Then that needed paradisal-sleep.
And now: now I only this all this,
One being cavorting where one past melds
To keep me silent, still, so that the sidewalk
Is only that sidewalk, there
Where hope, clustering, fastly moves us
Good, bad, indifferent – it makes no difference:
I am no one to judge so many, any,
So that there is – becomes – only the walk faster slower slowing here
And we free in Sun to trust to sleep to-be to seep a dream
Bought at some cost, to many:
Fidelis ad Mortem
And yet there is the Sun, the city, to witness
How we can should must break
Such sadness down.
New York, 2012