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Astro-Gymnastics -- Piet Hein

       
(Poem #823) Astro-Gymnastics
Do-it-yourself grook

 Go on a starlit night,
  stand on your head,
 leave your feet dangling
  outwards into space,
 and let the starry
  firmament you tread
 be, for the moment,
  your elected base.

 Feel Earth's colossal weight
  of ice and granite,
 of molten magma,
  water, iron, and lead;
 and briefly hold
  this strangely solid planet
 balanced upon
  your strangely solid head.
-- Piet Hein
Today's grook is rather atypical, in that it is not particularly
epigrammatic, pithy or aphoristic. However, it does share in the other main
quality that most of the grooks possess - it reveals Hein's delightfully
quirky sense of play, to say nothing of his keen perception and his
occasional trick of deftly turning established ideas on their heads.

The paradigm shift is handled beautifully - from the initial 'leave your
feet dangling outwards into space' to the wonderful image in the last four
lines, I can not just visualise but almost *feel* what he means. Definitely
one of my favourite grooks, despite its unconventional nature.

Links:

We've run one other grook: poem #668

The comments to which also contain a biography
  http://www.powerweb.net/playandlive/piethein.htm

and a bunch of other links.

-martin

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