The Voyage Home: The Mindful Home

Given Spock’s recent experiences of death and sharing his Katra with Bones and his body’s strange regeneration and his whole Vulcan-style re-education, everyone — especially his mother and Kirk — are concerned with what — if anything — has survived of his humanity.

It begins with the question How do you feel? which, grammatically, is actually a question about one’s mechanism for feeling and its ability to function. Yet, even such a logical examination of the question stumps our Mister Spock and sparks a short dialogue with his mother. Upon noting its importance to her that he be in touch with the more human aspects of himself, he promises to work on it.

The rest of the film has McCoy and Kirk both trying to get a feel for whether Spock feels at all like his old self. Time and again his cool logic disturbs them, but certain Vulcan philosophies which demand consideration for the well-being of all act as a bridge to reassure everyone of his re-budding humanity and to facilitate such actual re-budding. The situational tension surrounding Spock’s mechanism for feeling when Kirk asks Have you no feeling? but we all know how this turns out.

Spock tells his father to tell his mother I feel fine, which — grammatically — is a profound statement affirming that his mechanism for feeling is in working order. I try to touch on all these things in today’s sonnet while also maintaining a very strict iambic tetrameter until the final line beginning with two spondees which — I think — enhance the meaning quite nicely.

When all my parts are — in my mind —
in proper place and called “at home,”
what need is there to test the mind
and seek strange hearths within the home?
You wish that I were made to mind;
all logic, feeling, one of mind.
But purpose what would that drive home?
Such logic dear beseems your home,
while mine is such that takes to mind
the issue of how orphans home,
and how an empty house may home.
I ask that you no longer mind,
know I feel fine and I am home.
No, I feel fine and I am home.

Note: The rhyme scheme for this week’s sonnet uses no more than two words, mind and home. The decision to do so was inspired by Sir Phillip Sydney’s Sonnet 89 of Astrophil and Stella. Personally, I think the use of a two-word rhyme scheme in a sonnet should be called a Sydneyan Sonnet (but this not the time to really discuss the matter).


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