The rules of chaos are simple: A mountain

is never a perfect cone. A lake

is never really a circle. A drop

of dew is not a microcosm.

No. Flowers wither.

Dust collects. There is the

relentless return of what we

do not want. Everything inclines

to disorder. But then how to

explain this grove of orange trees

planted so close branch nuzzles branch,

the whole world in permanent rows?

An illusion, of course. When

the present for most of us lasts only

3 seconds. But then how to

explain the man blind from birth who

sees a person and believes he sees

a tree on legs. How did he find

the conceit to link such disparates?

The tactile vision of his past creates thev

chaos of his present sightedness.

His world, newly angled, is no longer

reasonable, but still he relies on what

he knows. He names what he sees, revising

phylum, genus, class as he goes,

sometimes standing quite still, eyes closed

in order to recall the harmony of things.