The poetry & poetic prose of Brandon Gene Petit

Exiting the Cave

I’ve been thinking… far too much, as usual… about reality and what waits for us beyond it, thanks to being reintroduced to Plato’s “Allegory of the Cave” in a recent philosophy discussion. I was supposed to be tying the allegory into the idea of education, but I couldn’t help but let my mind wander into other applicable territories… after all, to me the cave story can embody so many different examples of enlightenment. I like to think of the cave story as an illustration of what it might be like to transcend the known boundaries of reality, most likely through death and a transition into the after-life, and what it might be like to be so dazzled with the infinite beauty and wisdom of other worlds that we might easily forget our own. This, in turn, incites all kinds of notions in my subconscious… calling upon themes in everything from organized religion to theoretical physics. Man has always been fascinated with “making the jump” from life into the realm of death, and it reflects in many forms of art, literature, and sometimes even science.

I am no doubt working on a poem about this, most likely a form of prose, and I can’t disclose details yet but you will no doubt see it surface in my third poetry collection, if nowhere else first. I will, of course, have to include a tinge of “the forbidden” in doing so… for it is in my nature to speak of the dangerous realms of other worlds as much as it is the beneficial ones. No wilderness is complete without a no-man’s land; but the theme of danger is not what’s most important. It is the theme of enlightenment, whether good or bad, and how the frivolous baubles of tangible reality will pale in comparison to the far reaches of post-mortal existence. Funny… I can’t help but wonder… when we do make that jump, will we as newly enlightened beings look back at our former reality and our former selves and say… “Wow, they only saw things in color? And in only three dimensions? How pitifully primitive…” Then they will laugh, such as aliens above us laugh.


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