After Aristotle

An organ for cooling the blood,
how the brain forms—
having nice manners really,
I hear you say.

Nice behaviour with tranquillity,
of heart and lungs–
when meeting others, especially
those with vile tempers

But never your own, you think;
what’s in the spleen,
or viscera (so-called)—
the body in motion

Water in the brain, you see, what
comes from a mountain,
volcano or lava, if somewhere else,
what matters now

The heart at rest indeed, what
the Ancients knew best
I will tell about again—
trying to imagine you.

This poem “After Aristotle” originally appeared in Tracking CanLit. Spec. issue of Canadian Literature 220 (Spring 2014): 73.

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