Aphorisms At Year’s End

The poet Charles Simic pieces together impressionistic fragments from 2012. Among them: 

"Are there more idiots in the world today percentagewise than in some earlier ages?" asks Teofil Pancic, a columnist for Belgrade’s weekly Vreme. His answer is that it only seems so, because today they are more visible, more audible, and, of course, connected by the Internet. In the past, he wittily observes, everyone was his own idiot, isolated not only from the rest of mankind, but also from his fellow idiots, so that when something stupid occurred to him, there was no chance of it instantly becoming known to idiots in Tasmania and Uzbekistan.