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Cognition Sizzles[1]

My Head I’ll be Scratchin’ while my Thoughts are busy Hatchin’[2]

I listen scrupulously to the Reverberations of the Thought inside me[3]

Ideas Well up inside him like Life-Forms stirring in a Primordial Sea[4]

Somebody’s gotta Think of these things – apparently I’ve been Appointed[5]

I am a Living Thinking entity – who was created in the Sea of Information[6]

Like Lightning, a Thought flashes up, with Necessity – without Hesitation regarding its form[7]

He is a Tree, or a Rock, or at most an Animal, until he becomes Conscious – then,

Though, at the first Glimmer of this Consciousness: then he becomes Human[8]

To set your foot upon the First step, you must Rightfully be a Citizen of

The city of Ideas – and in that city it is Hard and Rare to be Naturalized[9]

An almost Imperceptible gesture, a flick of the Conscience,

To Go, to See – but I will be Wakeful: it is a Summons[10]


All our Thoughts are Misgiven[11]

I feel a Cleaving in my Mind as if my Brain has Split, I

Try to match it, Seam by Seam but cannot make them Fit[12]

Nothing seems worth this Radical, Forced leap into Consciousness[13]

There’s hardly any point in my Thinking, is there? What I think doesn’t Matter[14]

I carry Lopsided, Pumpkin-like Ideas in my head and heart, wishing for Proper Orange Roundness[15]

They say we use 10% of our Brains – but I’m convinced that’s a Gross Exaggeration[16]

My brain is now an Obsolete Storage drive without a Purpose[17]

One takes thought for Frail Tint and Spectral Glisten[18]

Thou Ill-Formed offspring of my Feeble Brain[19]

Mind: a Useless Appendage[20]


He is Lost in a Maze of Thoughts that are Ren-

Dered Vague by his Lack of words to Express them[21]

The Mind is a very Mysterious Organ about which Nothing

Whatever is Known, though we Depend upon it so Completely[22]

Our Brains Beguil’d, which Labouring for Invention, Bear Amiss[23]

The Traffic inside her Head stops believing in Traffic Lights – the

Result is Incessant Noise, a few bad Crashes, and eventually Gridlock[24]

A storm of Chaos and Confusion in her Head Great enough to Topple her over[25]

Live in Bondage to your Thoughts – and you will be Confused, Unclear[26]

Neurons get Mixed up, fire at the Wrong time – or take a Wrong turn[27]

We “Think Again” without knowing What or If we thought Before[28]

My Thoughts don’t fit the Man – they Never can they Never can[29]

Thoughts – Whither have ye led me? With what sweet Com-

Pulsion thus Transported to Forget what hither brought us?[30]


One Thinks: I must Break out of this Horrible Cy-

Cle, but doesn’t – it Continues through the thought[31]

Swirling Currents of Attention Eddy and Break off

And Drift about – to Disappear as new ones are Born[32]

A Gay and Motley train of Rhapsodical and Immethodical Thought[33]

It is a Thorny undertaking … to follow a movement so Wandering as

That of our own Mind, to Penetrate the Opaque depths of its Innermost

Folds, to pick out and Immobilize the innumerable flutterings that Agitate it[34]

No Thinking occurs along a perfectly Clear, Straight line leading From one

Point to another, to the next and then the next, until there is a Neat Conclusion[35]

The notion that there is a Thinker is just a Thought in the Stream of Thoughts –

Thought, Thought, Thought, Thinker, Thought, Thought, Thought, Thinker – and so on[36]

His Brain is Simmering and Bubbling within the Cracking Tenement of the Skull[37]

Thought Crashes over Thought in Random and Violent Succession[38]

Thinking is defined by the Incessant Alternation of Thoughts[39]

My Thoughts are Scattered and they’re Cloudy, they have

No Borders, no Boundaries – they Echo and they Swell[40]


Intolerable Neural Itch[41]

In the curious Naked Pain of the Thought[42]

With Clenched teeth, with tongue Pressing on palate,

Subdue, Crush, and Overpower the Mind by the Mind[43]

To Think is to be full of Sorrow and Leaden-Eyed Despairs[44]

An Electrical Thunderstorm Scatters Synapses across the surface of a great Brain[45]

He tries to be Aware, only to be Aware ­–­ but Awareness is Unendurable[46]

He has Time to Think – that is his Undoing[47]

Viper Thoughts that Coil around my Mind[48]

Tight-Drawn Noose of Thought[49]

Thought Breaks the Heart[50]


Members-Only Thought processes[51]

Among men who do not like the Tone of my Thoughts[52]

Mysterious Head – oh the Tormenting strangeness of our Ignorance

Of other minds – the Privileged Comfort of the Secrecy of our own![53]

Never Trust anything that can Think for itself if you can’t See where it Keeps its Brains[54]

There are Locked doors and Closed windows in your Mind – and Dark rooms behind them[55]

Look at what your Mind Constructs as coming from Elsewhere – not from Yourself[56]

I have a Mind myself and Recognize mind when I meet it in any Guise[57]

Because our Minds have No Boundaries – they are actually Joined[58]

I cannot Think your Thoughts will be much Different from mine[59]

With Inscrutable purpose, some hidden Prophetic Intent-

Ion – now first it seems my Thought begins to Span thee[60]


What we Pay Attention to Grows[61]

Neurons that Fire together – Wire together[62]

Being is slightly Corrupted by the Thinking that’s One-Upped it[63]

Your Mind will take the Shape of what you Frequently Hold in Thought[64]

By new Thoughts doth his Intention Change … in thinking, I Consume the Emprise[65]

That I Think is a quite Sufficient Explanation of myself and my Atmosphere[66]

Man, though High may be his station – is no Better than his Thoughts[67]

Know your True Measurements – and Dress your mind Accordingly[68]

Thought is less Crucial than the Perspective from which it Arises[69]

Thought is the Father to Deed[70]


Attention Attenuates[71]

Gleams of Half-Extinguished Thought[72]

Consciousness steps Out again for a Quick Breather[73]

In the Cold even my Thoughts have lost their Foliage

And appear all Alone – Dry and Narrow in the Flat air[74]

The Curtain Flaps in his brain … the Shutter Flickers in his brain[75]

To Imagine the Thoughtlessness of a Thoughtless thing is Useless[76]

My Brain Clears and the Black thoughts stirred up are Dispersed[77]

Cease thy Flight – O Heaven-born Mind![78]

Mind Whispers a Lost Landscape[79]

Mind lies Open and Desert[80]


One Thought Fills Immensity[81]

The Whole wide World we Traverse with our Thoughts[82]

Mind, like Space, is All-Embracing – it does not come into existence with

The Creation of our Body, nor does it Perish with its Disintegration – though

Invisible, it Suffuses our body, and every single act of Seeing, Hearing, Smell-

Ing, Speaking, or Moving the hands and legs – is simply the Activity of the Mind[83]

The agreeable After-Glow of Excitement when Thought lapses from Examination of a

Specific object into a Suffusive sense of its Connections with all the rest of our Existence[84]

Tense Creases of brow hold Thought in their Grip – Immense Brow matched by Thought Immense[85]

I Embrace in a Single Thought the World of things as they are and of things

As they could have Been – and I realize that a Single System includes All[86]

Thought has Thought itself through – and become a Pure Idea[87]

Thoughts of men are Widen’d with the process of the Suns[88]

Consciousness: the thing that is always Aware with

Or without a living Creature to share its Pleasures[89]

A Pulse in the Eternal Mind[90]


In the Celestial Palace of the Blazing Skull[91]

Illuminated within by the Force of his Thinking[92]

What Knowledge have we of Anything, save through our own Minds? All

Happenings are in the Mind – whatever happens in All minds, Truly Happens[93]

Ordinary Mind includes Eternal perceptions – Observe what’s vivid, notice what you

Notice, Catch yourself thinking, Vividness is self-selecting, First thought Best thought[94]

Follow your Genius Closely enough and it will not Fail to show you a Fresh Prospect every Hour[95]

Emancipate yourselves from Mental Slavery – none but ourselves can Free our Minds[96]

Whatever I Think, it keeps changing from Bright to Dark, from Clear to Colored:

Thus Before I begin to think and so After I stop – as if it is Real & I am Illusion[97]

Deep Inside he Glories that he has Raised his Thoughts to such a Lofty height[98]

Think Lovely Wonderful thoughts – and they Lift you up in the Air[99]

Consciousness Blooms like a dark drop of Ink[100]

[1] Naomi Cohn, Cell

[2] Yip Harburg, If I Only Had A Brain

[3] J.M. Coetzee, Waiting for the Barbarians

[4] Haruki Murakami tr. Jay Rubin, 1Q84

[5] George Carlin, Life is Worth Losing

[6] Kazunori Itô tr. Paul C. Halbert & Taro Yoshida, Ghost in the Shell

[7] Friedrich Nietzsche, Ecce Homo

[8] Hermann Hesse tr. Damion Searls, Demian

[9] C.P. Cavafy tr. Rae Dalven, First Step

[10] C.D. Wright, I Am Going to Prison

[11] Led Zeppelin,Stairway to Heaven

[12] Emily Dickinson, The Lost Thought

[13] Kelly Cherry, On Receiving the News of a Friend’s Father’s Death, at Four A.M.

[14] Margaret Atwood, The Handmaid’s Tale

[15] Dorothy Daggett, Six and Sixty

[16] Jimmy Dore, It’s Not Brain Surgery

[17] Don Hertzfeldt, World of Tomorrow Episode II: The Burden of Other People’s Thoughts

[18] Denise Levertov, The Necessity

[19] Anne Bradstreet,The Author to Her Book

[20] Barbara Tran, Loon Song

[21] William Golding, Lord of the Flies

[22] Virginia Woolf, A Room of One’s Own

[23] William Shakespeare, Sonnet LIX

[24] Arundhati Roy, The Ministry of Utmost Happiness

[25] Shundo Aoyama tr. Patricia Dai-En Bennage, Zen Seeds

[26] Seng Tsan, Affirming Faith in Mind

[27] William Bonfiglio, Geography at Breakfast

[28] Rae Armantrout, Fusion

[29] Joni Mitchell, I Came to the City

[30] John Milton, Paradise Lost

[31] Alan Dugan, Note: The Sea Grinds Things Up

[32] Philip Pullman, The Amber Spyglass

[33] Edgar Allan Poe, A Tale of the Ragged Mountains

[34] Michel de Montaigne, Essays

[35] Susan Griffin, She Tries to Reason Out

[36] Alan Watts, Nonduality in Action

[37] James Joyce, A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man

[38] Jamaica Kincaid, At the Bottom of the River

[39] Boris Groys tr. Thomas H. Ford, The Communist Postscript, On Hegel

[40] Simon and Garfunkel, Cloudy

[41] W.H. Auden, Petition

[42] D.H. Lawrence, The Horse Dealer’s Daughter

[43] Satipatthana Sutta of the Majjhima Nikaya tr. Lord Chalmers, quoted in The Three Pillars of Zen

[44] John Keats, Ode to a Nightingale

[45] David Ryan, Reliquary

[46] Ursula K. Le Guin, Old Music and the Slave Women

[47] Sherwood Anderson, The Egg

[48] Samuel Taylor Coleridge, Dejection: An Ode

[49] Paul Celan tr. Nikolai Popov & Heather McHugh, Crackpots, decomposing

[50] Cameroon proverb

[51] Laura Hershey, Translating the Crip

[52] Richard Wright, Black Boy

[53] Iris Murdoch, The Black Prince

[54] J.K. Rowling, Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets

[55] J.R.R. Tolkien, The Two Towers

[56] Uttara tr. Charles Hallisey, Therīgāthā

[57] Robert Frost, A Considerable Speck

[58] Gerald G. Jampolsky, Love is Letting Go of Fear

[59] Edna St. Vincent Millay, If Still Your Orchards Bear

[60] Walt Whitman, Passage to India

[61] Adrienne Maree Brown, Emergent Strategy

[62] Donald Hebb

[63] Brian Kim Stefans, The Future is One of a Place

[64] Marcus Aurelius

[65] Dante Alighieri tr. Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, The Inferno

[66] H.G. Wells, The Croquet Player

[67] Myra Viola Wilds, Thoughts

[68] J.D. Salinger,The Catcher in the Rye

[69] Henri Michaux tr. Richard Sieburth, Plume

[70] Jose Martí, Our America

[71] Matthew Bevis, In Search of Distraction

[72] William Wordsworth, Lines

[73] Douglas Adams, Life, The Universe and Everything

[74] Tom Hennen, In the Shallows of the River

[75] William Golding, Lord of the Flies

[76] Wendell Berry, The Design of a House

[77] Tayeb Salih tr. Denys Johnson-Davies, Seasons of Migration to the North

[78] John Dryden, Ode

[79] Bell Hooks, Appalachian Elegy 34

[80] Peter Quennell, The Flight into Egypt

[81] William Blake, Proverbs of Hell

[82] Samyutta-Nika 1.3

[83] Bassui Tokusho, Letters to His Disciples in The Three Pillars of Zen

[84] George Eliot, Middlemarch

[85] Vladimir Mayakovsky tr. Dorian Rottenburg, Conversations with Comrade Lenin

[86] Italo Calvino tr. William Weaver, The Origin of Birds

[87] Maggie Nelson, Bluets 5

[88] Alfred, Lord Tennyson, Locksley Hall

[89] Fanny Howe, Conclusively

[90] Rupert Brooke, The Soldier

[91] Padmasambhava tr. Gyurme Dorje, The Tibetan Book of the Dead

[92] Kate Daniels, Afterwards Apollo

[93] George Orwell, Nineteen Eighty-Four

[94] Allen Ginsberg, Cosmopolitan Greetings

[95] Henry David Thoreau, Walden

[96] Bob Marley, Redemption Song

[97] Philip Whalen, The Same Old Jazz

[98] Giovanni Boccaccio tr. Wayne Rebhorn, The Decameron

[99] J.M. Barrie, Peter Pan

[100] Vanessa Stauffer, Pygmalion

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