Jeff Seymour - Author of Fantasy, Literary Fiction, & c.: Words from Old Jeff

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Monday, February 27, 2012

Words from Old Jeff

Every year I get a little antsy in February. Last year, I made plans to quit my job as a teller at a credit union and fly off to spend six weeks in Austria with a friend of mine. This year, I contented myself with shaving the "I work from home now" celebration beard I started growing last August.

On a whim, I left the sideburns. I have been told I now look somewhat like Mr. Darcy.

Anyway, this led some people who met me for the first time when I was heavily bearded to fail to recognize me ("Hey, what was your name again?" "Jeff. I had a huge beard until yesterday." "Holy crap, you did. Wow, you look different."). One of these people has begun referring to beardless Jeff as New Jeff and bearded Jeff as Old Jeff ("Wow, man. It's like, New Jeff...I like Old Jeff better.").

This weekend, a discussion about life, the universe and everything (the subject matter, not the book, although maybe we can talk about that next weekend...) with my girlfriend brought to mind some words from an even Older Jeff (or Younger Jeff, I guess, depending on your perspective). In college ("University" to most of the English-speaking world), I was tasked to write an Ode in the style of Keats. I had a hard time with the assignment, and wound up writing what became, more or less, an Ode to Everything. In its final evolution, it ceased to become an Ode at all and became the following instead:

I could write an ode, but I choose not to.

I see nothing in the world

more deserving of praise

than anything else.

Who am I to say that a mountain is beautiful

and a three-thousand dollar purse is not?

Who am I to say that the smile of a woman

matters more than the size of her waist?

...and who are you to listen?

There is beauty in everything

and if I see it more in one object

than another it is only because,

for a moment, my eyes were part-blind.

Not exactly Shakespeare, but the sentiment of the final stanza still brings me great peace, and I wanted to share it here today.

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for sharing. A simple, yet powerful piece. I can see why it brings you peace. :-)