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September 25, 2023

This American Thing

By Jason Ryberg

This American Thing

So, just what do we make of this whole
peculiar and particular thing of ours
that so many have tried to identify,
dissect and analyze over the years,

this nebulous and amorphous thing we've
only ever managed to assign a slippery,
side-stepping, deflective designation to,
instead of its own proper name (as the
Chinese say, to each and everything...*)

this not wholly abstract thing that otherwise
remains at-large out there in a most likely
unstable state wherein it may, at any given
moment, degenerate further into little more
than a cheap substitute for Harvey the rabbit
or stunt double for Schrodinger's neon elephant
(always stinking up our national living room
with its noxious trumpeting),

neither of which has anybody here-to-fore
been able to consistently confirm or deny
whether they are, indeed, despite the obvious
destruction left in their wake, even a thing at all.

*Ancient Confucian Maxim: The beginning of wisdom
is first to give each and everything its proper name.

Article © Jason Ryberg. All rights reserved.
Published on 2022-01-17
Image(s) are public domain.
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