Monday 9 April 2018

Poetry Monday: Ignorance

Oh, the rabbit holes we can fall into with the help of the internet! I expect you all have your own stories of rabbit holes, and I do too. I'll try to shorten up the current one as best I can.

The theme for this week's Poetry Monday is "ignorance." I thought about the word all week; I thought about the "ignorance is bliss" angle (which is not exactly the whole quote, see here); I thought about ignorant (not knowing) versus ignorant (rude); I thought about known knowns, known unknowns (or is that unknown knowns?), and unknown unknowns; I thought about how little I knew of life when I was younger; I thought about how terribly much I still don't know; I eventually thought about how it was somehow Sunday already and I'd better get a poem written.

I decided to re-check the definition of "ignorant" and . . . aha! . . . in the online Oxford Dictionary I found a third meaning for ignorant -- angry or quick-tempered (West Indian meaning). This was a new one for me (proving yet again how terribly much I still don't know) and when I was reading the sample sentences, this one jumped out at me: "I is an ignorant crack-a-lackin moron."

Intrigued, I Googled "I is an ignorant crack-a-lackin moron" . . . with more than just a shade of trepidation, because I wasn't sure what kind of "crack" we'd be talking about if we talked this way. I was relieved to find that apparently "I is an ignorant crack-a-lackin moron" arose from this innocent meme:

Poor little fuzzy cracker-lacking hamster. And somehow an extra hyphen got mixed in there for the dictionary version.

None of the other results for the search turned up anything obscene or ignorant (see what I did there), so I'm going with the hamster meme, and if anyone asks me what I learned today, for once I'll have an answer that will command awe and respect in all who hear it. Hah.

And if you know of a darker explanation behind that phrase, please fill me in so I don't make a gigantic donkey of myself in front of other people, thank-you-very-much.

Anyway. Back to the job at hand. A poem. About ignorance. Here it is.


It's A Long And Winding Road, People; Be Careful Of The Rabbit Holes

I know far more now
Than previously,
But less than I'll know


Optimistic, I know!

I also know that if this was an exam, I'd fail! Fortunately, it's not an exam :)

It's been snowing here today (Sunday) since lunch time and is forecast to snow all night. So I'll going to get this post scheduled for auto-publish now, in case we lose power.

Have a non-cracka-lackin week, my friends! Unless, of course, you don't actually LIKE crackers :) 

P. S. You can read more poems at Diane's and Delores' blogs. Feel free to take part in Poetry Monday in the comments on any of our blogs, or post on your own blog and let us know where to look.

Update: Next Monday's topic is "Spring" . . .


Elephant's Child said...

Smiling broadly here.
And confess to frequently being HORRIFIED at how little I know. About anything.

dinthebeast said...

We just got a break from our "pineapple express" atmospheric river storm that brought a whole lot of rain, that I daresay we needed, and I got to walk in the back yard again.

I have only ever heard "crackalackin" as a somewhat dubious expression on a 2000 rap album by E-40 that a coworker of mine used to play over and over again while we loaded the trucks. I think I like your take on it better, frankly, although I did eventually warm up to the album a little...

These days I find myself terrified by ignorance and its likely consequences.

-Doug in Oakland

Yorkshire Pudding said...


I do not know my dreams
Or how it seems
The rich bleed the poor
I do not know how to reach the moon
Or why these living years
Pass by too soon
I do not know where Hughie went
The way he lived
He seemed hell bent
On getting to an early grave
And I do not know how to save
The troubled polar bear
Or even where
I might catch
A heath fritillary
Trembling on a summer’s day
I do not know the way
To Timbuktu
And, dear seeker of secrets,
I do not know you.

River said...

That's a cute little hamster, so sad that he's lackin' crackers.

baili said...

this is hilarious post dear Jenny !
i always enjoy your contemplation upon the topic and struggle to activate your brain in freeing days which is quite a hard task if i had to do this!
i think you gathered the ocean in tiny pot by writing this simple poem because simplicity and easy way is best thing to show that you are LEARNED and SKILLFUL!
please take care my friend and ,i hope the snow will leave soon and spring will take you in her fragrant blooming arms soon!

Red said...

I hope more people fall into rabbit holes as in your example you learned a lot. By the way, there are no rabbit holes here. The species we have don't make holes in the ground.

Joanne Noragon said...

I can almost see the phrase rolling from the rhyming and singing shores of Jamaica or the West Indies--but not quite. Eventually...

only slightly confused said...

Tough subject this week.

Marie Smith said...

Brilliant look at the topic, Jenny!

jenny_o said...

And don't forget that we know more now than we used to! That's both good and bad . . .

jenny_o said...

Your last sentence is one I thought about but didn't touch!

Thanks for the additional info on that phrase. I'll probably avoid using it in fine company :)

Chicken left a comment for you a few posts back. This one:

jenny_o said...

I think this is my favourite of your poems that I've read so far, including those unrelated to Poetry Monday, YP. It's lovely.

jenny_o said...

Hahahaha! Yes. Yes it is :)

jenny_o said...

Oh! I love that expression, baili: "gathered the ocean in tiny pot" . . . thank you for a new image in my head!

Thank you for your kind encouragement :) We got quite a lot of snow, but it will melt soon :)

jenny_o said...

Now I'm wondering if ours do. I was thinking more along the lines of Alice in Wonderland!

jenny_o said...

It does have that feel, doesn't it? Maybe I can get it started in Nova Scotia instead :D

jenny_o said...

I hear you! Why, I wonder?

jenny_o said...

I thought I kind of skirted all around the topic, but thank you, Marie!

Diane Stringam Tolley said...

LOVE this! And hopefully it'll be true for me, too! But the more I know, the more I realize there IS to know. Sigh.

jenny_o said...

Funny how that works for a lot of us!! Sigh, indeed :)

Anonymous said...

I'm not too confident about sending this as I commented twice on Friday's post and it didn't get through (the robot box didn't appear either time).

Anyway, it's a short poem so won't take me too long.


Musing this and that and t'other
It came as no surprise,
That I would feel insulted,
If I was deemed ignorant instead of wise.

Why should I risk my life
When the warnings are very clear?
Unless I was blind and couldn't see,
Or deaf and couldn't hear.

I would rather be informed twice
Of any dangers, pitfalls or risks,
Than blithely travelling a path
That caused at least, an agonising slipped disc.

Have a good week.

Joan (Devon)

jenny_o said...

I'm sorry you're having trouble commenting, Joan. I'm not getting your lost comments on my Blogger dashboard at all. I have no idea why, unless it happens to be a Blogger problem. Thank you for persisting!

Your thoughts in this poem are so true. I think as we get older (and hopefully wiser) we understand that it's better to be told twice, or more, than to be too proud to listen. When we're younger, sometimes that's not quite the way it is :)

A slipped disc is bad enough, let alone what else might happen from an ignored warning . . .

Chicken said...

That sounds like something Roald Dahl's creation, the BFG (Big Friendly Giant), would say, but I can't find it attributed to him. And I think "Unknown Unknowns" is the correct term. It's the scariest one. I refer to it as "I don't know what I don't know". So many crack-a-lakin ignorant things I've said as a result of the unknown unknowns. Your poem is very clever, however.

jenny_o said...

Yes, the unknown unknowns can be impossible to identify except by chance. I try to give chance a wide berth when I can!!

LL Cool Joe said...

The way your mind works cracks me up, and also makes me realise that mine doesn't work the same way. :D I've never heard the expression "I is an ignorant crack-a-lackin moron." but I like it.

Anonymous said...

Ignorance is a beautiful word which helps many people to lead a happy life...

Diane Stringam Tolley said...

And yet through the sharing of words, we do gain in knowledge. And in getting to know each other!

Diane Stringam Tolley said...

Yes. Please, please warn me again!

Steve Reed said...

Crack-a-lackin is definitely a catchy phrase, but I can't say I've ever heard it!

37paddington said...

Being West Indian, I certainly know that third definition of ignorant!

Martha said...

Poor little hamster. No teeny-tiny little animal as cute as this one should be crack-a-lackin!

Thanks for the smile. It's especially welcome with all the crappy weather we've had!

jenny_o said...

Hah! My husband keeps telling me that, too (that our minds don't work the same way) :)

I wonder who actually said that exact line first??

jenny_o said...

That is definitely the truth!

jenny_o said...

I was worried that a search for it might lead me somewhere I didn't want to be :)

jenny_o said...

I was surprised to discover that usage -- but now I'm happy to know someone who wasn't surprised!

jenny_o said...

You know, I'm not even sure hamsters eat crackers to begin with. I had one once, and I never gave him crackers. He was cracka-lackin too :D

This weather is hanging on so long . . . soon, Martha, soon! Better days will come!

Diane Henders said...

Now I have a new word in my vocabulary (and I'm wearing a smile from the cute hamster picture). Life is good. :-)

jenny_o said...

Words and cute critters . . . you're easy to please! ha ha