A new book of poems to review, I sit on the bus behind a young woman over whose shoulder I see if Sophia is considered as an archetypal figure, then what characteristics were or were not borrowed from other cultures reminds me of the concept of  'mirror neurons' discovered by Rizzolatti's group in Parma. The idea is that, if I watch you pick up a banana, the same neurons fire in my brain that are firing in yours to perform the action.  In that sense, our two brains become less important. Since she emerged as a bearer of notions from the collective unconsciousness, she would quite naturally display many features in common with a well-thumbed edition of The Portable Beat Reader.

"Why are you reading the Beats?" I ask. She half-turns and replies, "They're not things consecrated to the gods, even the bones of sacrificial animals, became themselves sacred, and the Roman word sacer meant much the same as the Polynesian tabu. Sacred things were dangerous and had to be disposed of with proper care when they were no longer candy-coated." "Like many poets of today?" "Yeah," she grins.

Disembarking in front of the Natural Foods store—

Does discernment
not lift her voice?
On the hilltop,
           on the road,
at the crossways
she takes her stand.


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