THE KNOWN UNKNOWN is a poem I wrote while climbing one of my favourite trails in Côte d’Azur this spring. The flimsy April weather herds an abundance of clouds and fog hovering over the coastal Alpes Maritimes. While the Mediterranean blue brightens the low seaside, the rising rocky Alps shovel in a cape of veiled mystery. Add some spring wind, not a Zephyr, but that pushing steady force level bellow the Mistral’s stormy disorder, and you get a moving scene of darkness and light.

Like the human soul, nature, which is within us, blends its dichotomy by painting over light with cloudy darkness. These shady glimpses of duality don’t rest, never the same, constantly changing. Like our emotions or who we show that we are depending on the situation and others. Only some genuine characters can be considered safe to accept our vulnerability, so we protect the fragile shell. Some of us do, but the unafraid just go for it, take me or leave me. Hello friends, I love you. (Pardon my personal entry, but poetry is all about intimacy.)


THE KNOWN UNKNOWN in the creative process

Nature has always inspired poets, painters, novelists, scientists, even powerful, millions of lives influencing politicians like Winston Churchill, who holidayed painting on Côte d’Azur. Since we are nature, naturally, we are moved by her swells. And some of these undulating waves breathe inside us the muses’ whispers or crash en force a storm of creativity. My own experience attests that all one needs is to accept the call of the muses and to be openly listening to the flow of this unexplainable joy that takes all over you as you gladly let it in. This is when one gains the access to the known unknown, the personal and collective unconscious meeting on the level of consciousness. Therefore, one cannot understand the words in some poems literally but metaphorically. That is the puzzle to be riddled with a relishing poise of a willing player.

Forget reason, that comes later when you reflect on what intuitively was given to you and the poet. At the opening exhibition curated from the history of art at The Louvre Abu Dhabi arresting quotes accompanied the visual experience. A few touched my heart, some stirred the reason, others spoked united to the triumvirate of my heart, reason and the soul.

Like this one: “The ignorant affirms, the learned doubts, the wise reflects.”



Often, I only understand what I wrote in the poetic swell, days, weeks, even years after I reread it. Able to connect the content with some further experience, the poem becomes whole, self-sustaining entity ready to be appreciated by the reader. Further, some poems we don’t understand until the ripe time in our eventful lives ushers clarity shaded to date by ignorance or the lack of cues. I could only get Shakespeare’s sonnets from my mid-thirties. Before then, I was a drowning swimmer in the whitewater of cluelessness. Then I saw a live performance By Heart in Brooklyn. One man show by a Portuguese director with the voluntary audience called to the stage, whose task was to memorise individually a part of Shakespeare’s Sonnet number 30. In two hours we were all taken into the unknown depths of these magic fourteen lines, accompanied by the director’s insights and readings from other authors such as Boris Pasternak equally touched by this particular prodigious work. So, once I got this raft to paddle through, I was mesmerised by their universal, time-defying depth.

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I gave you the raft by drawing the scenery that inspired me above, the skilful paddling is in your hands.


An innocent beginning clothed blue

Bathing in the seaside morning 

I climbed the unknown truth

A veil of dark fog hovering

In a ghastly, weighed down mood

Blown like a flying carpet of grey glue

Down is up, up is down, change is the rule


A poetic realm thrones high above

The noise of sunken humanity

Deafened into a thick fog of vanity.


But up here, the apian song grooves

My soul along its flawless notes

I feel so free diving in whole

While flying jolly high and low

The verdant treasure throve of life

~ Joy

Numerology in poetry

THE KNOWN UNKNOWN has an intuitive rhythm of 8-9-8. I’ve just googled the number and what showed up in the search results took my spirit by its tail. I am vaguely familiar with tarot, and only once was introduced to the so called Angel Cards. Pulling a symbolic card from the deck after a sound meditation session, I was rather amused, yet this call from 898 rang a divine clue: “you are worthy of greatness. It means that you must detoxify your thoughts and environment. Get rid of all the negative reviews, toxic people, and situations in your life.” Aren’t we all?

New ZealandMountain lake

Freudian slips: words as clues

I shared this poem with a friend, adding: “Poems have hidden messages in them that we can only see in a certain stare of mind.” Of course I meant “state”, but one indeed has to pay close attention, literally, to stare at the content sometimes to decipher the meaning. She had to “let it sit for a few days” before getting it to “sink in”, meaning to grasp the details and the wholeness of it.

The Nietzsche path up to Eze inspired a few of my poems. Depending on the season, my state of mind and the alignment of my heart and soul in that moment of strenuous climbing up, ideas flow, words pour out. I hope, they will guide you too for whatever fruitful purpose it may be.