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The Indistinguishable Being of Good and Evil

In our visceral impetus to give meaning to our temporal existence, more often than none, we distort our perception of reality to add momentary euphoria to our often mundane life cycles. In order words, we bestow credence to what does not exist. Doing so, we create illusions of malleable well-being.

One of my illusions is the Befana, celebrated yearly twelve days after Christmas. Well? It took the three Magi a while to get to Bethlehem, right? It made sense. What did not make any sense was how the celebration evolved when I dug into my stocking.

I knew that it (the stocking) brought by the hypothetical Befana would be filled with either sweets or charcoal.

The abundance of each depended on good or bad deeds through the preceding year. If children performed good deeds, they would receive sweets. On the other end, if they committed evil, they would be the recipients of charcoal.

You must know that I strived during the year to perform good deeds. Did I do it to receive sweets? No! It just felt virtuous to do good deeds. That's it. So, given this genuine sentiment, you must sympathize with me when I dug into my stocking to find mostly charcoal.

How could that be? Why all that charcoal? If my being 'good' was not good enough, what would good possibly be? I was truly mesmerized and shocked by my mom's decision.

Many years later, my mom told me the truth. She did not have sufficient money available to buy sweets. Instead, with the cash she had, she purchased the less expensive item: charcoal. We flamed it to keep us warm during the night. And the smaller portion of sweets? They were mostly biscotti. We dipped them in our traditional steaming caffe latte.

Both charcoal and biscotti served a common good: the well being of the family.

As we should, in our interpretation of life, we discriminate the good from evil. However, from a universal perspective, good and evil are inseparable and inevitable. Humans live the consequences derived from the combustion of good and evil. Evil evolves as the pejorative diminutive of the overall goodness of the universe. Shouldn't we call our stance with our surroundings neutrality? It is up to us to turn that neutrality into what we project as being good or we perceive as being evil.

Il Carbone, I Biscotti, e La Befana

The Indistinguishable Nature of Good and Evil


Nel buio del'alba

Biscotti inzzuppati

Nel latte e caffe'

Riempito dell'amore della mamma


Nel buio dell'imbrunire

Carbone bruciato

Nel braciere

Colmo dell'amore della mamma


Nel chiaro scuro della notte

Calza zeppa

Di biscotti e carbone

Gonfia dell'amore della mamma


Nel giorno della Befana

Pensiero carico

Di male e bene

Sazio dell'amore della mamma


The Undistinguishable Nature of Good and Evil

La Befana, Il Carbone e I Biscotti


In the dark of dawn

Biscuits soaked

In milk and coffee

Filled with mum's love


In the dark of dusk

Burnt coal

In the brazier

Heaped with mother's love


In the light and dark

Of the night

Wedge socks

Of cookies and coal

Swollen with mom's love


On the day of the Befana

Thinking charged

Of bad and good

Sated with mamma's love


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