THE CYNIC AND THE OPTIMIST
The cynic is a pessimist,
with sarcasm in his tone;
Dragging down our precious hopes,
with the hopelessness of his own.
"Most things are absurd," he thinks,
"not worthy of my time;
The world is going downhill,
with war, lust, greed and crime."
"Peace," he says, " impossible,
not in a million years;
Not with us hopeless humans,
caught up in our hopeless fears."
"Hope is a false security,
and ideals, a needless hope;
They help us to leap going,
and let our egos cope."
`'No!", I cry,
"This need not be true;
Hope may be so very valuable,
a healthy attitude."
"Where would we be without our hopes,
no holiness at all;
Merely animals upon this earth,
with no heavenly call."
"There is no thing as heaven!" he yells,
"Just life and death come past,
There is no kind of paradise,
or soul-form that will last."
"Is there nothing sacred?
Is all so meaningless?
Does nothing have value?
Are we all just nothingness?
"You may be right,
there certainly might,
Be no life hereafter;
But, I don't appreciate your skepticism,
and your cynical laughter.
"Every man, is part of the Plan,
for a heaven right here on earth;
Without the hope for ideals enlivened,
we're doomed right from our birth.
"And what of our children,
and their children's children,
is there no hope for them?
Peace is an honest struggle,
so worthy in the end.
"Ideals may be a fantasy,
of what cannot come true;
They may also be the working goal
of a realistically optimistic view."
"That is a bunch of B.S.", he tells me,
"your realism is absurd;
Optimism has no place,
in this suffering world.
"And realism is idealistic,
because reality is unknowable;
I am skeptical about knowing anything,
with the human mind so fallible."
"You are so right, the mind is weak,
but, I hope that we can know;
Because, if not, there is no chance,
to have our being grow.
"And what is life without growth,
no more than an unplanted seed;
Yet even a seed is full of potential,
and carries a hope, indeed.
"You see, to me, there is only one choice,
between hope and the cynical side;
The cynic never has a chance,
at least the hopeful try."