“Not Knowing Myself, A Poem Is Written”

No other on earth knows me as I am.
Those who think they know me best
Know me least. Those who know
They don’t know me, at least know that.
No other will ever know me, as a whole, in this world.

This is written not with excess sorrow or pity or pride.
No other needs to know me, and I do not need
To be known by any other. I alone need to know
Myself, that other I am. I do not know
Why I do not know, but I do know it.

The knowledge that I know
Nothing is painful, difficult to bear. But before
Being can be known, Nothingness must be borne.
Only when I know myself do I exist, as myself.
If I have no knowledge, then I have

No being. I am not, for I know not
What I do or why I do it. I know
Nothing. I do not even know
Why I write these words, or
Why I wake up and find life

Only in these hours when the rest of
The world as we know it is lost in dreams,
Or dreamless sleep. I must wake up
At this time, or in time this distance
Between what I once knew and who I could be

Will grow too great for me to bridge.
I am not still, for I still do not know
What I do or why I do it.
Do you know what you do?
Why do you read these words?

What do you need to know?
Are we born not knowing, so we are
Forced to yearn till death make us whole?
Can we ever know? Can we even live
In this world of dreams if we unearth

The shattering reality of who we actually are?
The knowledge that I know
Nothing is painful, difficult to bear;
But if I knew myself, would that knowledge
Bring even more pain? Could I live with it?

I must wake up now, at this time, or in time
This distance will keep me tied down
To dreams, seeing only what seems
To be, forgetting what I need to do,
To remember who I am.

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