Can you imagine a world without elephants?
Imagine a world without people-
Now imagine a world without people-who-can’t-
Imagine a world of elephants without people-
Imagine a world of people-
Now imagine a world
Now imagine that world-without-elephants-without-a-world
within a world with people-who-
Now imagine that that world-without-elephants-without-a-world
is within a world of people-who-not-only-can-
is this world.
Imagine this world.
Reflection: I wrote this poem as a sort of koan. I spent hours on making sure that it made convoluted sense, but the point is to get us to go into a maze of imagining, to get lost and find our way through by trusting that the world the poet is asking us to imagine is simply a world of people that can imagine a world with elephants. I don’t think this poem can be understood by reading it straight through, even several times.