I have a twisted love for the absence of grand design. It comes from being an atheistic hindu. You know, I don’t believe in the intentions of things (even though occasionally the way they behave makes me question this generosity) and I have not the arrogance to think the universe is conspiring against me. I find it comforting to think of the world as benignly indifferent rather than actively evil. I suppose this denies me the luxury of believing the world to be deliberately helpful, but I’m okay with that. So this poem makes me happy.
The More Loving One
Looking up at the stars, I know quite well
That, for all they care, I can go to hell,
But on earth indifference is the least
We have to dread from man or beast.
How should we like it were stars to burn
With a passion for us we could not return?
If equal affection cannot be,
Let the more loving one be me.
Admirer as I think I am
Of stars that do not give a damn,
I cannot, now I see them, say
I missed one terribly all day.
Were all stars to disappear or die,
I should learn to look at an empty sky
And feel its total dark sublime,
Though this might take me a little time.
W. H. Auden (Orginally published in Homage to Clio, 1960)