Friday, March 30, 2012
http://www.poetryarchive.org/poetryarchive/themes.do (by theme) http://www.poetryarchive.org/poetryarchive/forms.do (by poetic form) Note the glossary of poetic terms as well as search by author or title Create an account and save lists of favorites. Make your own Bibliotherapeutic Self-Help file. Poems by form If you're interested in a traditional form, this Search page makes it quick and easy for you to find examples. (Click on the "by form" link above for examples of the following: allegory anapaestic ballad blank couples couplets dactyls dialect dialogue elegy end epigram ghazal haiku kenning limericks monologue monorhyme narrative nonsense octave ode parody play poem prose quatrains rap rhyme rhyming riddle rubaiyat satire sequence sestina short song sonnet syllabics tercets test verse villanelle word
Creative Reading Journaling Dreams Gestalt Catharsis Character dev Writing Poetry Fiction Prose NF Illustration Doodle Collage Transfer Text based Other kinds of reading Charts Maps Timelines Cards Colors Gems Knots Flowers Runes Music Signs Symbols Metaphor Dreams Theory Deconstruction - In describing deconstruction, Derrida famously observed that "there is nothing outside the text." That is to say, all of the references used to interpret a text are themselves texts, including the "text" of reality as a reader knows it. There is no true objective, non-textual reference from which interpretation can begin. Reader Response – Wolfgang Iser, Norman Holland, Stanley Fish Active Imagination – Marie-Louise von Franz Groups Self-actualization Transactional theory – Louise Rosenblatt
Thursday, March 29, 2012
In A Dark Time In a dark time, the eye begins to see, I meet my shadow in the deepening shade; I hear my echo in the echoing wood-- A lord of nature weeping to a tree, I live between the heron and the wren, Beasts of the hill and serpents of the den. What's madness but nobility of soul At odds with circumstance? The day's on fire! I know the purity of pure despair, My shadow pinned against a sweating wall, That place among the rocks--is it a cave, Or winding path? The edge is what I have. A steady storm of correspondences! A night flowing with birds, a ragged moon, And in broad day the midnight come again! A man goes far to find out what he is-- Death of the self in a long, tearless night, All natural shapes blazing unnatural light. Dark,dark my light, and darker my desire. My soul, like some heat-maddened summer fly, Keeps buzzing at the sill. Which I is I? A fallen man, I climb out of my fear. The mind enters itself, and God the mind, And one is One, free in the tearing wind. ~by Theodore Roethke We are the time. We are the famous We are the time. We are the famous metaphor from Heraclitus the Obscure. We are the water, not the hard diamond, the one that is lost, not the one that stands still. We are the river and we are that greek that looks himself into the river. His reflection changes into the waters of the changing mirror, into the crystal that changes like the fire. We are the vain predetermined river, in his travel to his sea. The shadows have surrounded him. Everything said goodbye to us, everything goes away. Memory does not stamp his own coin. However, there is something that stays however, there is something that bemoans. ~by Jorge Luis Borges The Four Ages of Man 1.1 Lo now! four other acts upon the stage, 1.2 Childhood, and Youth, the Manly, and Old-age. 1.3 The first: son unto Phlegm, grand-child to water, 1.4 Unstable, supple, moist, and cold's his Nature. 1.5 The second: frolic claims his pedigree; 1.6 From blood and air, for hot and moist is he. 1.7 The third of fire and choler is compos'd, 1.8 Vindicative, and quarrelsome dispos'd. 1.9 The last, of earth and heavy melancholy, 1.10 Solid, hating all lightness, and all folly. 1.11 Childhood was cloth'd in white, and given to show, 1.12 His spring was intermixed with some snow. 1.13 Upon his head a Garland Nature set: 1.14 Of Daisy, Primrose, and the Violet. 1.15 Such cold mean flowers (as these) blossom betime, 1.16 Before the Sun hath throughly warm'd the clime. 1.17 His hobby striding, did not ride, but run, 1.18 And in his hand an hour-glass new begun, 1.19 In dangers every moment of a fall, 1.20 And when 'tis broke, then ends his life and all. 1.21 But if he held till it have run its last, 1.22 Then may he live till threescore years or past. 1.23 Next, youth came up in gorgeous attire 1.24 (As that fond age, doth most of all desire), 1.25 His Suit of Crimson, and his Scarf of Green. 1.26 In's countenance, his pride quickly was seen. 1.27 Garland of Roses, Pinks, and Gillyflowers 1.28 Seemed to grow on's head (bedew'd with showers). 1.29 His face as fresh, as is Aurora fair, 1.30 When blushing first, she 'gins to red the Air. 1.31 No wooden horse, but one of metal try'd: 1.32 He seems to fly, or swim, and not to ride. 1.33 Then prancing on the Stage, about he wheels; 1.34 But as he went, death waited at his heels. 1.35 The next came up, in a more graver sort, 1.36 As one that cared for a good report. 1.37 His Sword by's side, and choler in his eyes, 1.38 But neither us'd (as yet) for he was wise, 1.39 Of Autumn fruits a basket on his arm, 1.40 His golden rod in's purse, which was his charm. 1.41 And last of all, to act upon this Stage, 1.42 Leaning upon his staff, comes up old age. 1.43 Under his arm a Sheaf of wheat he bore, 1.44 A Harvest of the best: what needs he more? 1.45 In's other hand a glass, ev'n almost run, 1.46 This writ about: This out, then I am done. 1.47 His hoary hairs and grave aspect made way, 1.48 And all gave ear to what he had to say. 1.49 These being met, each in his equipage 1.50 Intend to speak, according to their age, 1.51 But wise Old-age did with all gravity 1.52 To childish childhood give precedency, 1.53 And to the rest, his reason mildly told: 1.54 That he was young, before he grew so old. 1.55 To do as he, the rest full soon assents, 1.56 Their method was that of the Elements, 1.57 That each should tell what of himself he knew, 1.58 Both good and bad, but yet no more then's true. 1.59 With heed now stood, three ages of frail man, 1.60 To hear the child, who crying, thus began. Childhood. 2.1 Ah me! conceiv'd in sin, and born in sorrow, 2.2 A nothing, here to day, but gone to morrow, 2.3 Whose mean beginning, blushing can't reveal, 2.4 But night and darkness must with shame conceal. 2.5 My mother's breeding sickness, I will spare, 2.6 Her nine months' weary burden not declare. 2.7 To shew her bearing pangs, I should do wrong, 2.8 To tell that pain, which can't be told by tongue. 2.9 With tears into this world I did arrive; 2.10 My mother still did waste, as I did thrive, 2.11 Who yet with love and all alacity, 2.12 Spending was willing to be spent for me. 2.13 With wayward cries, I did disturb her rest, 2.14 Who sought still to appease me with her breast; 2.15 With weary arms, she danc'd, and By, By, sung, 2.16 When wretched I (ungrate) had done the wrong. 2.17 When Infancy was past, my Childishness 2.18 Did act all folly that it could express. 2.19 My silliness did only take delight, 2.20 In that which riper age did scorn and slight, 2.21 In Rattles, Bables, and such toyish stuff. 2.22 My then ambitious thoughts were low enough. 2.23 My high-born soul so straitly was confin'd 2.24 That its own worth it did not know nor mind. 2.25 This little house of flesh did spacious count, 2.26 Through ignorance, all troubles did surmount, 2.27 Yet this advantage had mine ignorance, 2.28 Freedom from Envy and from Arrogance. 2.29 How to be rich, or great, I did not cark, 2.30 A Baron or a Duke ne'r made my mark, 2.31 Nor studious was, Kings favours how to buy, 2.32 With costly presents, or base flattery; 2.33 No office coveted, wherein I might 2.34 Make strong my self and turn aside weak right. 2.35 No malice bare to this or that great Peer, 2.36 Nor unto buzzing whisperers gave ear. 2.37 I gave no hand, nor vote, for death, of life. 2.38 I'd nought to do, 'twixt Prince, and peoples' strife. 2.39 No Statist I: nor Marti'list i' th' field. 2.40 Where e're I went, mine innocence was shield. 2.41 My quarrels, not for Diadems, did rise, 2.42 But for an Apple, Plumb, or some such prize. 2.43 My strokes did cause no death, nor wounds, nor scars. 2.44 My little wrath did cease soon as my wars. 2.45 My duel was no challenge, nor did seek. 2.46 My foe should weltering, with his bowels reek. 2.47 I had no Suits at law, neighbours to vex, 2.48 Nor evidence for land did me perplex. 2.49 I fear'd no storms, nor all the winds that blows. 2.50 I had no ships at Sea, no fraughts to loose. 2.51 I fear'd no drought, nor wet; I had no crop, 2.52 Nor yet on future things did place my hope. 2.53 This was mine innocence, but oh the seeds 2.54 Lay raked up of all the cursed weeds, 2.55 Which sprouted forth in my insuing age, 2.56 As he can tell, that next comes on the stage. 2.57 But yet me let me relate, before I go, 2.58 The sins and dangers I am subject to: 2.59 From birth stained, with Adam's sinful fact, 2.60 From thence I 'gan to sin, as soon as act; 2.61 A perverse will, a love to what's forbid; 2.62 A serpent's sting in pleasing face lay hid; 2.63 A lying tongue as soon as it could speak 2.64 And fifth Commandment do daily break; 2.65 Oft stubborn, peevish, sullen, pout, and cry; 2.66 Then nought can please, and yet I know not why. 2.67 As many was my sins, so dangers too, 2.68 For sin brings sorrow, sickness, death, and woe, 2.69 And though I miss the tossings of the mind, 2.70 Yet griefs in my frail flesh I still do find. 2.71 What gripes of wind, mine infancy did pain? 2.72 What tortures I, in breeding teeth sustain? 2.73 What crudities my cold stomach hath bred? 2.74 Whence vomits, worms, and flux have issued? 2.75 What breaches, knocks, and falls I daily have? 2.76 And some perhaps, I carry to my grave. 2.77 Sometimes in fire, sometimes in water fall: 2.78 Strangely preserv'd, yet mind it not at all. 2.79 At home, abroad, my danger's manifold 2.80 That wonder 'tis, my glass till now doth hold. 2.81 I've done: unto my elders I give way, 2.82 For 'tis but little that a child can say. Youth. 3.1 My goodly clothing and beauteous skin 3.2 Declare some greater riches are within, 3.3 But what is best I'll first present to view, 3.4 And then the worst, in a more ugly hue, 3.5 For thus to do we on this Stage assemble, 3.6 Then let not him, which hath most craft dissemble. 3.7 Mine education, and my learning's such, 3.8 As might my self, and others, profit much: 3.9 With nurture trained up in virtue's Schools; 3.10 Of Science, Arts, and Tongues, I know the rules; 3.11 The manners of the Court, I likewise know, 3.12 Nor ignorant what they in Country do. 3.13 The brave attempts of valiant Knights I prize 3.14 That dare climb Battlements, rear'd to the skies. 3.15 The snorting Horse, the Trumpet, Drum I like, 3.16 The glist'ring Sword, and well advanced Pike. 3.17 I cannot lie in trench before a Town, 3.18 Nor wait til good advice our hopes do crown. 3.19 I scorn the heavy Corslet, Musket-proof; 3.20 I fly to catch the Bullet that's aloof. 3.21 Though thus in field, at home, to all most kind, 3.22 So affable that I do suit each mind, 3.23 I can insinuate into the breast 3.24 And by my mirth can raise the heart deprest. 3.25 Sweet Music rapteth my harmonious Soul, 3.26 And elevates my thoughts above the Pole. 3.27 My wit, my bounty, and my courtesy 3.28 Makes all to place their future hopes on me. 3.29 This is my best, but youth (is known) alas, 3.30 To be as wild as is the snuffing Ass, 3.31 As vain as froth, as vanity can be, 3.32 That who would see vain man may look on me: 3.33 My gifts abus'd, my education lost, 3.34 My woful Parents' longing hopes all crost; 3.35 My wit evaporates in merriment; 3.36 My valour in some beastly quarrel's spent; 3.37 Martial deeds I love not, 'cause they're virtuous, 3.38 But doing so, might seem magnanimous. 3.39 My Lust doth hurry me to all that's ill, 3.40 I know no Law, nor reason, but my will; 3.41 Sometimes lay wait to take a wealthy purse 3.42 Or stab the man in's own defence, that's worse. 3.43 Sometimes I cheat (unkind) a female Heir 3.44 Of all at once, who not so wise, as fair, 3.45 Trusteth my loving looks and glozing tongue 3.46 Until her friends, treasure, and honour's gone. 3.47 Sometimes I sit carousing others' health 3.48 Until mine own be gone, my wit, and wealth. 3.49 From pipe to pot, from pot to words and blows, 3.50 For he that loveth Wine wanteth no woes. 3.51 Days, nights, with Ruffins, Roarers, Fiddlers spend, 3.52 To all obscenity my ears I bend, 3.53 All counsel hate which tends to make me wise, 3.54 And dearest friends count for mine enemies. 3.55 If any care I take, 'tis to be fine, 3.56 For sure my suit more than my virtues shine. 3.57 If any time from company I spare, 3.58 'Tis spent in curling, frisling up my hair, 3.59 Some young Adonais I do strive to be. 3.60 Sardana Pallas now survives in me. 3.61 Cards, Dice, and Oaths, concomitant, I love; 3.62 To Masques, to Plays, to Taverns still I move; 3.63 And in a word, if what I am you'd hear, 3.64 Seek out a British, bruitish Cavalier. 3.65 Such wretch, such monster am I; but yet more 3.66 I want a heart all this for to deplore. 3.67 Thus, thus alas! I have mispent my time, 3.68 My youth, my best, my strength, my bud, and prime, 3.69 Remembring not the dreadful day of Doom, 3.70 Nor yet the heavy reckoning for to come, 3.71 Though dangers do attend me every hour 3.72 And ghastly death oft threats me with her power: 3.73 Sometimes by wounds in idle combats taken, 3.74 Sometimes by Agues all my body shaken; 3.75 Sometimes by Fevers, all my moisture drinking, 3.76 My heart lies frying, and my eyes are sinking. 3.77 Sometimes the Cough, Stitch, painful Pleurisy, 3.78 With sad affrights of death, do menace me. 3.79 Sometimes the loathsome Pox my face be-mars 3.80 With ugly marks of his eternal scars. 3.81 Sometimes the Frenzy strangely mads my Brain 3.82 That oft for it in Bedlam I remain. 3.83 Too many's my Diseases to recite, 3.84 That wonder 'tis I yet behold the light, 3.85 That yet my bed in darkness is not made, 3.86 And I in black oblivion's den long laid. 3.87 Of Marrow full my bones, of Milk my breasts, 3.88 Ceas'd by the gripes of Serjeant Death's Arrests: 3.89 Thus I have said, and what I've said you see, 3.90 Childhood and youth is vain, yea vanity. Middle Age. 4.1 Childhood and youth forgot, sometimes I've seen, 4.2 And now am grown more staid that have been green, 4.3 What they have done, the same was done by me: 4.4 As was their praise, or shame, so mine must be. 4.5 Now age is more, more good ye do expect; 4.6 But more my age, the more is my defect. 4.7 But what's of worth, your eyes shall first behold, 4.8 And then a world of dross among my gold. 4.9 When my Wild Oats were sown, and ripe, and mown, 4.10 I then receiv'd a harvest of mine own. 4.11 My reason, then bad judge, how little hope 4.12 Such empty seed should yield a better crop. 4.13 I then with both hands graspt the world together, 4.14 Thus out of one extreme into another, 4.15 But yet laid hold on virtue seemingly: 4.16 Who climbs without hold, climbs dangerously. 4.17 Be my condition mean, I then take pains 4.18 My family to keep, but not for gains. 4.19 If rich, I'm urged then to gather more 4.20 To bear me out i' th' world and feed the poor; 4.21 If a father, then for children must provide, 4.22 But if none, then for kindred near ally'd; 4.23 If Noble, then mine honour to maintain; 4.24 If not, yet wealth, Nobility can gain. 4.25 For time, for place, likewise for each relation, 4.26 I wanted not my ready allegation. 4.27 Yet all my powers for self-ends are not spent, 4.28 For hundreds bless me for my bounty sent, 4.29 Whose loins I've cloth'd, and bellies I have fed, 4.30 With mine own fleece, and with my household bread. 4.31 Yea, justice I have done, was I in place, 4.32 To cheer the good and wicked to deface. 4.33 The proud I crush'd, th'oppressed I set free, 4.34 The liars curb'd but nourisht verity. 4.35 Was I a pastor, I my flock did feed 4.36 And gently lead the lambs, as they had need. 4.37 A Captain I, with skill I train'd my band 4.38 And shew'd them how in face of foes to stand. 4.39 If a Soldier, with speed I did obey 4.40 As readily as could my Leader say. 4.41 Was I a laborer, I wrought all day 4.42 As cheerfully as ere I took my pay. 4.43 Thus hath mine age (in all) sometimes done well; 4.44 Sometimes mine age (in all) been worse than hell. 4.45 In meanness, greatness, riches, poverty 4.46 Did toil, did broil; oppress'd, did steal and lie. 4.47 Was I as poor as poverty could be, 4.48 Then baseness was companion unto me. 4.49 Such scum as Hedges and High-ways do yield, 4.50 As neither sow, nor reap, nor plant, nor build. 4.51 If to Agriculture I was ordain'd, 4.52 Great labours, sorrows, crosses I sustain'd. 4.53 The early Cock did summon, but in vain, 4.54 My wakeful thoughts up to my painful gain. 4.55 For restless day and night, I'm robb'd of sleep 4.56 By cankered care, who sentinel doth keep. 4.57 My weary breast rest from his toil can find, 4.58 But if I rest, the more distrest my mind. 4.59 If happiness my sordidness hath found, 4.60 'Twas in the crop of my manured ground: 4.61 My fatted Ox, and my exuberous Cow, 4.62 My fleeced Ewe, and ever farrowing Sow. 4.63 To greater things I never did aspire, 4.64 My dunghill thoughts or hopes could reach no higher. 4.65 If to be rich, or great, it was my fate. 4.66 How was I broil'd with envy, and with hate? 4.67 Greater than was the great'st was my desire, 4.68 And greater still, did set my heart on fire. 4.69 If honour was the point to which I steer'd, 4.70 To run my hull upon disgrace I fear'd, 4.71 But by ambitious sails I was so carried 4.72 That over flats, and sands, and rocks I hurried, 4.73 Opprest, and sunk, and sack'd, all in my way 4.74 That did oppose me to my longed bay. 4.75 My thirst was higher than Nobility 4.76 And oft long'd sore to taste on Royalty, 4.77 Whence poison, Pistols, and dread instruments 4.78 Have been curst furtherers of mine intents. 4.79 Nor Brothers, Nephews, Sons, nor Sires I've spar'd. 4.80 When to a Monarchy my way they barr'd, 4.81 There set, I rid my self straight out of hand 4.82 Of such as might my son, or his withstand, 4.83 Then heapt up gold and riches as the clay, 4.84 Which others scatter like the dew in May. 4.85 Sometimes vain-glory is the only bait 4.86 Whereby my empty school is lur'd and caught. 4.87 Be I of worth, of learning, or of parts, 4.88 I judge I should have room in all men's hearts; 4.89 And envy gnaws if any do surmount. 4.90 I hate for to be had in small account. 4.91 If Bias like, I'm stript unto my skin; 4.92 I glory in my wealth I have within. 4.93 Thus good, and bad, and what I am, you see, 4.94 Now in a word, what my diseases be: 4.95 The vexing Stone, in bladder and in reins, 4.96 Torments me with intolerable pains; 4.97 The windy cholic oft my bowels rend, 4.98 To break the darksome prison, where it's penn'd; 4.99 The knotty Gout doth sadly torture me, 4.100 And the restraining lame Sciatica; 4.101 The Quinsy and the Fevers often distaste me, 4.102 And the Consumption to the bones doth waste me, 4.103 Subject to all Diseases, that's the truth, 4.104 Though some more incident to age, or youth; 4.105 And to conclude, I may not tedious be, 4.106 Man at his best estate is vanity. Old Age. 5.1 What you have been, ev'n such have I before, 5.2 And all you say, say I, and something more. 5.3 Babe's innocence, Youth's wildness I have seen, 5.4 And in perplexed Middle-age have been, 5.5 Sickness, dangers, and anxieties have past, 5.6 And on this Stage am come to act my last. 5.7 I have been young, and strong, and wise as you 5.8 But now, Bis pueri senes is too true. 5.9 In every Age I've found much vanity. 5.10 An end of all perfection now I see. 5.11 It's not my valour, honour, nor my gold, 5.12 My ruin'd house, now falling can uphold; 5.13 It's not my Learning, Rhetoric, wit so large, 5.14 Now hath the power, Death's Warfare, to discharge. 5.15 It's not my goodly house, nor bed of down, 5.16 That can refresh, or ease, if Conscience frown; 5.17 Nor from alliance now can I have hope, 5.18 But what I have done well, that is my prop. 5.19 He that in youth is godly, wise, and sage 5.20 Provides a staff for to support his age. 5.21 Great mutations, some joyful, and some sad, 5.22 In this short Pilgrimage I oft have had. 5.23 Sometimes the Heavens with plenty smil'd on me, 5.24 Sometimes, again, rain'd all adversity; 5.25 Sometimes in honour, sometimes in disgrace, 5.26 Sometime an abject, then again in place: 5.27 Such private changes oft mine eyes have seen. 5.28 In various times of state I've also been. 5.29 I've seen a Kingdom flourish like a tree 5.30 When it was rul'd by that Celestial she, 5.31 And like a Cedar others so surmount 5.32 That but for shrubs they did themselves account. 5.33 Then saw I France, and Holland sav'd, Calais won, 5.34 And Philip and Albertus half undone. 5.35 I saw all peace at home, terror to foes, 5.36 But ah, I saw at last those eyes to close, 5.37 And then, me thought, the world at noon grew dark 5.38 When it had lost that radiant Sun-like spark. 5.39 In midst of griefs, I saw some hopes revive 5.40 (For 'twas our hopes then kept our hearts alive); 5.41 I saw hopes dash't, our forwardness was shent, 5.42 And silenc'd we, by Act of Parliament. 5.43 I've seen from Rome, an execrable thing, 5.44 A plot to blow up Nobles and their King. 5.45 I've seen designs at Ree and Cades cross't, 5.46 And poor Palatinate for every lost. 5.47 I've seen a Prince to live on others' lands, 5.48 A Royal one, by alms from Subjects' hands. 5.49 I've seen base men, advanc'd to great degree, 5.50 And worthy ones, put to extremity, 5.51 But not their Prince's love, nor state so high, 5.52 Could once reverse, their shameful destiny. 5.53 I've seen one stabb'd, another lose his head, 5.54 And others fly their Country through their dread. 5.55 I've seen, and so have ye, for 'tis but late, 5.56 The desolation of a goodly State. 5.57 Plotted and acted so that none can tell 5.58 Who gave the counsell, but the Prince of hell. 5.59 I've seen a land unmoulded with great pain, 5.60 But yet may live to see't made up again. 5.61 I've seen it shaken, rent, and soak'd in blood, 5.62 But out of troubles ye may see much good. 5.63 These are no old wives' tales, but this is truth. 5.64 We old men love to tell, what's done in youth. 5.65 But I return from whence I stept awry; 5.66 My memory is short and brain is dry. 5.67 My Almond-tree (gray hairs) doth flourish now, 5.68 And back, once straight, begins apace to bow. 5.69 My grinders now are few, my sight doth fail, 5.70 My skin is wrinkled, and my cheeks are pale. 5.71 No more rejoice, at music's pleasant noise, 5.72 But do awake at the cock's clanging voice. 5.73 I cannot scent savours of pleasant meat, 5.74 Nor sapors find in what I drink or eat. 5.75 My hands and arms, once strong, have lost their might. 5.76 I cannot labour, nor I cannot fight: 5.77 My comely legs, as nimble as the Roe, 5.78 Now stiff and numb, can hardly creep or go. 5.79 My heart sometimes as fierce, as Lion bold, 5.80 Now trembling, and fearful, sad, and cold. 5.81 My golden Bowl and silver Cord, e're long, 5.82 Shall both be broke, by wracking death so strong. 5.83 I then shall go whence I shall come no more. 5.84 Sons, Nephews, leave, my death for to deplore. 5.85 In pleasures, and in labours, I have found 5.86 That earth can give no consolation sound 5.87 To great, to rich, to poor, to young, or old, 5.88 To mean, to noble, fearful, or to bold. 5.89 From King to beggar, all degrees shall find 5.90 But vanity, vexation of the mind. 5.91 Yea, knowing much, the pleasant'st life of all 5.92 Hath yet amongst that sweet, some bitter gall. 5.93 Though reading others' Works doth much refresh, 5.94 Yet studying much brings weariness to th' flesh. 5.95 My studies, labours, readings all are done, 5.96 And my last period can e'en elmost run. 5.97 Corruption, my Father, I do call, 5.98 Mother, and sisters both; the worms that crawl 5.99 In my dark house, such kindred I have store. 5.100 There I shall rest till heavens shall be no more; 5.101 And when this flesh shall rot and be consum'd, 5.102 This body, by this soul, shall be assum'd; 5.103 And I shall see with these same very eyes 5.104 My strong Redeemer coming in the skies. 5.105 Triumph I shall, o're Sin, o're Death, o're Hell, 5.106 And in that hope, I bid you all farewell. ~by Anne Bradstreet
The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock by T.S. Eliot S'io credesse che mia risposta fosse A persona che mai tornasse al mondo, Questa fiamma staria senza piu scosse. Ma perciocche giammai di questo fondo Non torno vivo alcun, s'i'odo il vero, Senza tema d'infamia ti rispondo. Let us go then, you and I, When the evening is spread out against the sky Like a patient etherized upon a table; Let us go, through certain half-deserted streets, The muttering retreats Of restless nights in one-night cheap hotels And sawdust restaurants with oyster-shells: Streets that follow like a tedious argument Of insidious intent To lead you to an overwhelming question… Oh, do not ask, "What is it?" Let us go and make our visit. In the room the women come and go Talking of Michelangelo. The yellow fog that rubs its back upon the window-panes, The yellow smoke that rubs its muzzle on the window-panes Licked its tongue into the corners of the evening, Lingered upon the pools that stand in drains, Let fall upon its back the soot that falls from chimneys, Slipped by the terrace, made a sudden leap, And seeing that it was a soft October night, Curled once about the house, and fell asleep. And indeed there will be time For the yellow smoke that slides along the street, Rubbing its back upon the window-panes; There will be time, there will be time To prepare a face to meet the faces that you meet; There will be time to murder and create, And time for all the works and days of hands That lift and drop a question on your plate; Time for you and time for me, And time yet for a hundred indecisions, And for a hundred visions and revisions, Before the taking of a toast and tea. In the room the women come and go Talking of Michelangelo. And indeed there will be time To wonder, "Do I dare?" and, "Do I dare?" Time to turn back and descend the stair, With a bald spot in the middle of my hair— [They will say: "How his hair is growing thin!"] My morning coat, my collar mounting firmly to the chin, My necktie rich and modest, but asserted by a simple pin— [They will say: "But how his arms and legs are thin!"] Do I dare Disturb the universe? In a minute there is time For decisions and revisions which a minute will reverse. For I have known them all already, known them all— Have known the evenings, mornings, afternoons, I have measured out my life with coffee spoons; I know the voices dying with a dying fall Beneath the music from a farther room. So how should I presume? And I have known the eyes already, known them all— The eyes that fix you in a formulated phrase, And when I am formulated, sprawling on a pin, When I am pinned and wriggling on the wall, Then how should I begin To spit out all the butt-ends of my days and ways? And how should I presume? And I have known the arms already, known them all— Arms that are braceleted and white and bare [But in the lamplight, downed with light brown hair!] Is it perfume from a dress That makes me so digress? Arms that lie along a table, or wrap about a shawl. And should I then presume? And how should I begin? . . . . . Shall I say, I have gone at dusk through narrow streets And watched the smoke that rises from the pipes Of lonely men in shirt-sleeves, leaning out of windows? … I should have been a pair of ragged claws Scuttling across the floors of silent seas. . . . . . And the afternoon, the evening, sleeps so peacefully! Smoothed by long fingers, Asleep… tired… or it malingers, Stretched on the floor, here beside you and me. Should I, after tea and cakes and ices, Have the strength to force the moment to its crisis? But though I have wept and fasted, wept and prayed, Though I have seen my head [grown slightly bald] brought in upon a platter, I am no prophet—and here's no great matter; I have seen the moment of my greatness flicker, And I have seen the eternal Footman hold my coat, and snicker, And in short, I was afraid. And would it have been worth it, after all, After the cups, the marmalade, the tea, Among the porcelain, among some talk of you and me, Would it have been worth while, To have bitten off the matter with a smile, To have squeezed the universe into a ball To roll it toward some overwhelming question, To say: "I am Lazarus, come from the dead, Come back to tell you all, I shall tell you all"— If one, settling a pillow by her head, Should say: "That is not what I meant at all. That is not it, at all." And would it have been worth it, after all, Would it have been worth while, After the sunsets and the dooryards and the sprinkled streets, After the novels, after the teacups, after the skirts that trail along the floor— And this, and so much more?— It is impossible to say just what I mean! But as if a magic lantern threw the nerves in patterns on a screen: Would it have been worth while If one, settling a pillow or throwing off a shawl, And turning toward the window, should say: "That is not it at all, That is not what I meant, at all." . . . . . No! I am not Prince Hamlet, nor was meant to be; Am an attendant lord, one that will do To swell a progress, start a scene or two, Advise the prince; no doubt, an easy tool, Deferential, glad to be of use, Politic, cautious, and meticulous; Full of high sentence, but a bit obtuse; At times, indeed, almost ridiculous— Almost, at times, the Fool. I grow old… I grow old… I shall wear the bottoms of my trousers rolled. Shall I part my hair behind? Do I dare to eat a peach? I shall wear white flannel trousers, and walk upon the beach. I have heard the mermaids singing, each to each. I do not think that they will sing to me. I have seen them riding seaward on the waves Combing the white hair of the waves blown back When the wind blows the water white and black. We have lingered in the chambers of the sea By sea-girls wreathed with seaweed red and brown Till human voices wake us, and we drown.
Wednesday, March 28, 2012
Death is a Dialogue between Death is a Dialogue between The Spirit and the Dust. "Dissolve" says Death -- The Spirit "Sir I have another Trust" -- Death doubts it -- Argues from the Ground -- The Spirit turns away Just laying off for evidence An Overcoat of Clay. For Death -- or rather For Death -- or rather For the Things 'twould buy -- This -- put away Life's Opportunity -- The Things that Death will buy Are Room -- Escape from Circumstances -- And a Name -- With Gifts of Life How Death's Gifts may compare -- We know not -- For the Rates -- lie Here -- ~2 by Emily Dickinson dying is fine)but Death dying is fine)but Death ?o baby i wouldn't like Death if Death were good:for when(instead of stopping to think)you begin to feel of it,dying 's miraculous why?be cause dying is perfectly natural;perfectly putting it mildly lively(but Death is strictly scientific & artificial & evil & legal) we thank thee god almighty for dying (forgive us,o life!the sin of Death ~by E. E. Cummings Nothing But Death There are cemeteries that are lonely, graves full of bones that do not make a sound, the heart moving through a tunnel, in it darkness, darkness, darkness, like a shipwreck we die going into ourselves, as though we were drowning inside our hearts, as though we lived falling out of the skin into the soul. And there are corpses, feet made of cold and sticky clay, death is inside the bones, like a barking where there are no dogs, coming out from bells somewhere, from graves somewhere, growing in the damp air like tears of rain. Sometimes I see alone coffins under sail, embarking with the pale dead, with women that have dead hair, with bakers who are as white as angels, and pensive young girls married to notary publics, caskets sailing up the vertical river of the dead, the river of dark purple, moving upstream with sails filled out by the sound of death, filled by the sound of death which is silence. Death arrives among all that sound like a shoe with no foot in it, like a suit with no man in it, comes and knocks, using a ring with no stone in it, with no finger in it, comes and shouts with no mouth, with no tongue, with no throat. Nevertheless its steps can be heard and its clothing makes a hushed sound, like a tree. I'm not sure, I understand only a little, I can hardly see, but it seems to me that its singing has the color of damp violets, of violets that are at home in the earth, because the face of death is green, and the look death gives is green, with the penetrating dampness of a violet leaf and the somber color of embittered winter. But death also goes through the world dressed as a broom, lapping the floor, looking for dead bodies, death is inside the broom, the broom is the tongue of death looking for corpses, it is the needle of death looking for thread. Death is inside the folding cots: it spends its life sleeping on the slow mattresses, in the black blankets, and suddenly breathes out: it blows out a mournful sound that swells the sheets, and the beds go sailing toward a port where death is waiting, dressed like an admiral. ~by Pablo Neruda The Suicide by Edna St. Vincent Millay "Curse thee, Life, I will live with thee no more! Thou hast mocked me, starved me, beat my body sore! And all for a pledge that was not pledged by me, I have kissed thy crust and eaten sparingly That I might eat again, and met thy sneers With deprecations, and thy blows with tears,— Aye, from thy glutted lash, glad, crawled away, As if spent passion were a holiday! And now I go. Nor threat, nor easy vow Of tardy kindness can avail thee now With me, whence fear and faith alike are flown; Lonely I came, and I depart alone, And know not where nor unto whom I go; But that thou canst not follow me I know." Thus I to Life, and ceased; but through my brain My thought ran still, until I spake again: "Ah, but I go not as I came,—no trace Is mine to bear away of that old grace I brought! I have been heated in thy fires, Bent by thy hands, fashioned to thy desires, Thy mark is on me! I am not the same Nor ever more shall be, as when I came. Ashes am I of all that once I seemed. In me all's sunk that leapt, and all that dreamed Is wakeful for alarm,—oh, shame to thee, For the ill change that thou hast wrought in me, Who laugh no more nor lift my throat to sing Ah, Life, I would have been a pleasant thing To have about the house when I was grown If thou hadst left my little joys alone! I asked of thee no favor save this one: That thou wouldst leave me playing in the sun! And this thou didst deny, calling my name Insistently, until I rose and came. I saw the sun no more.—It were not well So long on these unpleasant thoughts to dwell, Need I arise to-morrow and renew Again my hated tasks, but I am through With all things save my thoughts and this one night, So that in truth I seem already quite Free,and remote from thee,—I feel no haste And no reluctance to depart; I taste Merely, with thoughtful mien, an unknown draught, That in a little while I shall have quaffed." Thus I to Life, and ceased, and slightly smiled, Looking at nothing; and my thin dreams filed Before me one by one till once again I set new words unto an old refrain: "Treasures thou hast that never have been mine! Warm lights in many a secret chamber shine Of thy gaunt house, and gusts of song have blown Like blossoms out to me that sat alone! And I have waited well for thee to show If any share were mine,—and now I go Nothing I leave, and if I naught attain I shall but come into mine own again!" Thus I to Life, and ceased, and spake no more, But turning, straightway, sought a certain door In the rear wall. Heavy it was, and low And dark,—a way by which none e'er would go That other exit had, and never knock Was heard thereat,—bearing a curious lock Some chance had shown me fashioned faultily, Whereof Life held content the useless key, And great coarse hinges, thick and rough with rust, Whose sudden voice across a silence must, I knew, be harsh and horrible to hear,— A strange door, ugly like a dwarf.—So near I came I felt upon my feet the chill Of acid wind creeping across the sill. So stood longtime, till over me at last Came weariness, and all things other passed To make it room; the still night drifted deep Like snow about me, and I longed for sleep. But, suddenly, marking the morning hour, Bayed the deep-throated bell within the tower! Startled, I raised my head,—and with a shout Laid hold upon the latch,—and was without. * * * * Ah, long-forgotten, well-remembered road, Leading me back unto my old abode, My father's house! There in the night I came, And found them feasting, and all things the same As they had been before. A splendour hung Upon the walls, and such sweet songs were sung As, echoing out of very long ago, Had called me from the house of Life, I know. So fair their raiment shone I looked in shame On the unlovely garb in which I came; Then straightway at my hesitancy mocked: "It is my father's house!" I said and knocked; And the door opened. To the shining crowd Tattered and dark I entered, like a cloud, Seeing no face but his; to him I crept, And "Father!" I cried, and clasped his knees, and wept. * * * * Ah, days of joy that followed! All alone I wandered through the house. My own, my own, My own to touch, my own to taste and smell, All I had lacked so long and loved so well! None shook me out of sleep, nor hushed my song, Nor called me in from the sunlight all day long. I know not when the wonder came to me Of what my father's business might be, And whither fared and on what errands bent The tall and gracious messengers he sent. Yet one day with no song from dawn till night Wondering, I sat, and watched them out of sight. And the next day I called; and on the third Asked them if I might go,—but no one heard. Then, sick with longing, I arose at last And went unto my father,—in that vast Chamber wherein he for so many years Has sat, surrounded by his charts and spheres. "Father," I said, "Father, I cannot play The harp that thou didst give me, and all day I sit in idleness, while to and fro About me thy serene, grave servants go; And I am weary of my lonely ease. Better a perilous journey overseas Away from thee, than this, the life I lead, To sit all day in the sunshine like a weed That grows to naught,—I love thee more than they Who serve thee most; yet serve thee in no way. Father, I beg of thee a little task To dignify my days,—'tis all I ask Forever, but forever, this denied, I perish." "Child," my father's voice replied, "All things thy fancy hath desired of me Thou hast received. I have prepared for thee Within my house a spacious chamber, where Are delicate things to handle and to wear, And all these things are thine. Dost thou love song? My minstrels shall attend thee all day long. Or sigh for flowers? My fairest gardens stand Open as fields to thee on every hand. And all thy days this word shall hold the same: No pleasure shalt thou lack that thou shalt name. But as for tasks—" he smiled, and shook his head; "Thou hadst thy task, and laidst it by," he said.
Monday, March 26, 2012
The End of Mr. Y presents us with many questions about the present. Asks us to imagine a world created entirely from our imaginations. Leads us through a looking glass and lets us choose if we want to stay and play on the other side or return to mundane reality. Though return we must, as with all good stories the novel comes to an end. But treasure troves from the author remain long after the last page is turned. Like Olbers Paradox, who knew Edgar Allan Poe was a thought scientist, describing "infinity as the thought of a thought" in his poem Eureka in response, anticipating Big Bang theory 100 years before the experimental scientists. Or that hyperreality has been mapped by Derrida but we can't get there from here, i.e., language will always circumvent and we will find ourselves in a feedback loop. Or in considering "emotion" as metaphor, a symptom of something set in motion, a movement from one state to another but never the state itself. Thomas attempts narrative in a world of the infinite possibilities of poststructuralist physics in order to arrive at the conclusion realized by her protagonist, Ariel, who has "so much free will that nothing means anything anymore." But Thomas counters the only way she, or we, know how: Language creates causal connections between things aka beginning, middle, end. "And the middle is only there because the beginning is; the end is only there because the middle is. And in the beginning was the word..." BTW, Ariel's romantic interest in the novel is named Adam. As with her other novels, Scarlett Thomas is reading as educated entertainment.
Sunday, March 25, 2012
Saturday, March 24, 2012
Wednesday, March 21, 2012
Tuesday, March 20, 2012
Monday, March 19, 2012
Sunday, March 18, 2012
Friday, March 16, 2012
Monday, March 12, 2012
Thursday, March 08, 2012
Love the press School of Life is bringing to bibliotherapy but want to stress that what they offer is more akin to what in library land is known as a readers advisory service.
This group in the UK is making bibliotherapy happen as group therapy accessible to any one. Brilliant. Wish we had something like it in the States. IMLS (Institute of Museum & Library Services) would be only org big enough to implement at the national level.