Once started by accident
things tend to echo thru time,
to repeat, repeat themselves
from generation to generation.
Once initiated by design
things tend to be handed over
for the same ancient reason
or for no current reason at all.
The force exerted from the past
upon the pliable present
may be good, may be bad,
may be both, may be neither.
The wheat's preserved with the chaff:
the things right and beneficent
with the things wrong or maleficent.
Many reserve the term tradition
for the former,
where it fosters a natural continuity,
ignoring the latter,
where it leads to cultural inertia.
Often they do not know
how to sift the one from the other,
meeting ev'ry change for the better
with resounding opposition.
They forget that nothing turns just,
just because they call it