matociquala: (bear by san)
Patrons-only post over on the patreon includes the poem draft that I wrote at 2 am this morning, when I should have been sleeping.

Also, some notes on my Christmas cactus, which is blooming now, so [ profile] tanaise says it's an Epiphany cactus, and hey, every once in a while, we all need an epiphany.

matociquala: (bad girls firefighters)
Oh grand-daughters.
You will not know what your mothers and your grandmothers knew;
you will not know how they fought with no true hope for their own salvation. 

You will not know how they cursed and kicked to make a better world.
A world that would honor
your mind, your ambition, your desire
to be something more
than a servant, a subject, a decoration.

How they clawed and they
fought to build a world where
you could be human.

You will not recognize their grief and
pride when you stand up,
and accept what was impossible for them as your due.

You will not recognize it.
You will not remember it.

But you will live it.

When you fight for your own
daughters and grand-daughters,
and see them one step higher on the spiral.
One step closer to unquestioned,
to human.

How tall.
How tall is the stair?
matociquala: (rengeek will and tilda)

I am a part of I
And all that I unknowing know--
And all that I unwilling will--
It is the space that makes the structure
Through which the stars of ego gleam
The dark energy of mind,
The dark matter of me.

I own it though I do not know it.
I claim it though I cannot see it.
I trust it though I cannot touch it.
I am a piece of a greater mystery
And all it is and provides is me.

I am a part of we
And all that we releasing hold--
And all that we embracing free--
It is the matrix that we permeate
As the salt richens the sea.

Matrix holds the opal;
Opal holds the light.

The conceit seemed so awe-laden that I just couldn't bring myself to portentous language.

Here, we're having a pretty sunset. I thought I'd share that too:

2012-11-25 16.18.26

matociquala: (new england bare trees winter manchester)
Slate blue sky smolders
At the western horizon.
Bare trees clutch last light.
matociquala: (sf star trek horta/spock)

Goldfinches, by the way, are totally why I plant sunflowers.

2011 08 03 garden and goldfinch 002

Well, and I love sunflowers.

Which reminds me that last night, while working on a different poem, I found a poem I wrote last year and had apparently forgotten all about. So I thought I'd share it here.

Yankee farmer with your half-acre in flowers
and your forty acres in hay;
your dust-bathing hens hunkered
in the shade of the coop--rust, white, periwinkle
(the color of a civil twilight);
your pigs in their wallow, fatting on spoiled tomatoes;
I know you.

I know your feed cap and your farmer's tan and your coveralls.
I know the dust and chaff on your boots.
I know your shaggy ridiculous long-horned Scottish cows,
the chafe of frozen knuckles in the spring night cold
as you labor with her, turning the calf so she can be born.
I know the work of harvesting onions,
the ache of back and hamstrings,
the long windrows laid to cure in the sun.

I know the cosmos and lupins,
the daylilies, butterfly bush, Shasta daisies,
snapdragons, sunflowers--the sunflowers! Crimson, lemon,
orange, streaky and clear, golden petals dipped in rust,
and each with a brown-black velvet eye--
I know the way the heavy sunflower dips and sways
under the impulsive weight of the goldfinch.

I know your turkeys gleaning in the fields.

I know your farm shares and your farm stands and your farmer's markets.
I know your green apples fallen beside the road.
I know the rocks in your field, new-turned every spring,
and the life of a limpet or a lichen clinging to the scraped dome of glacial stone.

There's forty acres in hay and thirty-nine in vegetables.
There's a spotted boar awkwardly straddling a jaded sow.
The half-acre in its untended riot lies by the road.
The neighbors think your farm pretty.

A white tree with a weeping habit
trembles but stands in the long wind,

March 2010
August 2010

It's not my best ever, but maybe I will fix it someday.

matociquala: (lion in winter broken because you're bri)
The moon is said inconstant,
but each night whether in
the fullness of bright strength
or honed to a sharpened sliver
she holds the sky.

And the clouds swirl around her and shatter.
matociquala: (muppetology need bears fozzie & kermit)

I seem to have written the draft of a poem today, because of a pendant [ profile] elisem gave me before she went on her merry way.

A simple word in the tongue of bears

So you climb.
One foot before the other. Repeat. Again. After.
To where your chest burns out from the inside
Wanting air.

At the cave mouth, Bear is waiting.
Age-clouded, lame in one paw,
Hoared with years.
She rubs her cheek with the backs of her foreclaws and squints.

"I hope you're not sucking your paws," you say,
But when she laughs it doesn't sound like the rain.
Bear says, "You only come here when you're wanting something."

You say, "What's in the cave?"
She says, "Fear."

"Fear? Is that all?"

"Fear," she says. "And the opposite of introspection. It's
A simple word in the tongue of bears,
But in yours it's honey-sticky to explain."

"I have time," you say,
Though the sun is sliding.

She says, "You came here looking
To get outside yourself.
You came here looking for the wilderness,
The alien."

You shrug,
As you might shrug in home-room.
She chews a claw.

You say, "What's in the cave?"
She says, "What do you carry?"

But the cave doesn't care about you.
You feel its cold breath, watch the exhale
Ruckle her fur back to front.
You dig a toe in the grass of the meadow and dodge her cataracted gaze.

She says, "Well, there's the vugs, for one thing."

"Vugs?" You picture some
Rubbery monster out of Roald Dahl.

He would know what to do about
An awkward conversation with a bear.

"A void or cavity in the stone, which may be paved with druse."
She has photos. Laid out on the grass,
She shows you some.
"...this vug in the Cascade Range is partially filled with crystals.
This one, from Madagascar, you can wear upon a chain..."

They look like geodes. Anchored geodes.
"So they're empty. Spaces."

"If you say so. The crystals reflect."

Bear is a physician
not a poet.
It may take her a while
To explain.
"What is the word in your language for when
You go out looking for something that's nothing like you
And you find yourself inside it anyway?"

"Do you have to be afraid of it?" you ask her.

"You are god," she says. "When I eat you, it will be the bear eating the woman,
But god will only see god eating god."

The bear regards you.
You are--go ahead, wipe your hands--
You are afraid of the bear.

"Well, that's what's in the cave," she says.
"The fearful thing. The alien thing,
That you see everywhere.
Like the world the cave
Is full of mirrors."

You edge aside as she rises. Collects her photos and comes forward.
She ambles down the same path you ascended.
Light between pine branches
Makes her dappled
As a horse.
She limps.
Her back sways.

"Oh, and one more thing."
She twists her head over her shoulder.
"This isn't Narnia."

You stare.
She sighs. She says, in patience,
"It is a simple word in Bear."

"I don't think" --you wipe your hands again-- "don't think there's a word for that in my

She turns away. She shrugs the sunlight off her shoulders
And descends.

For Elise Matthesen
17 September 2010

matociquala: (comics invisibles lord fanny)

First, I bring you a poem, which I'd like to dedicate to [ profile] dancinghorse, [ profile] casacorona, and [ profile] coffeeem, for various reasons.

Of a long-shadowed evening, the horses stamp hollow,
expectant, roan sides steadfast and steaming.
Their horns that aren't gyre the air like stinging jellies
luminous and insubstantial.
Their attention lies heavy as haybales on shoulders.

Scraped boots wear a pendulum path
barn to shed
and shed to barn.
There's other work. Work to do without
glancing up to watch them watch back
a deniable mythology
horns impalpable as the breath swelling barrel bodies
blowing red nostrils wide in the pewter of age-blued heads.

In the scoop rattle oats, sweet and dusty.
Muck boots manure-freckled.
The barrow wants both hands.
But beyond white fences,
petal-sharp ears papercut on limpid dusk
the horses are listening.


27 July 2008
31 July 2008
1 August 2008
10 October 2008

In other news, last week at the archery range, I broke another arrow...

matociquala: (writing whiskey wicked faerie)
My poem, "Seven Steeds," is live in the current issue of Lone Star Stories. Along with stories and poetry by six other amazing authors.

And so to bed.
matociquala: (spies sandbaggers sense of occasion)

Because nothing creates creativity like spending the day killing your brain with idleness, I bring you the first draft of a poem.

Li Bai drowns while embracing the moon )

For your reference, Li Bai's poem "Amusing Myself" in English translation:

Facing my wine, I did not see the dusk,
Falling blossoms have filled the folds of my clothes.
Drunk, I rise and approach the moon in the stream,
Birds are far off, people too are few.

If you happen to read Chinese, here's the original.

The idleness of computer games is probably slightly better for you than the idleness of rice spirits, but probably not by much.

Tomorrow, I expect my brainkiller will be playing in photoshop. I have a bunch of CM icons I want to make. Do you suppose that will lead to more poetry?

matociquala: (spies mfu goodliest outside napoleon)

That's two poems in one year.

I guess I have started being a poet again.

That's nice, and kind of strange-feeling.
matociquala: (spies mfu glower flowers)

Walt Whitman (1819-1892)

Word over all, beautiful as the sky,
Beautiful that war and all its deeds of carnage must in time be utterly lost,
That the hands of the sisters Death and Night incessantly softly wash again, and ever again, this soiled world;
For my enemy is dead, a man divine as myself is dead,
I look where he lies white-faced and still in the coffin--I draw near,
Bend down and touch lightly with my lips the white face in the coffin.

I have written ~4,907 words since 1 pm. "Overkill" is finished, in a very ragged draft.

This means I have to do absolutely nothing tomorrow... er, today... except float about the house being drained, do the post-mortem for CM 3x11, and--if I am not snowed the hell in, which seems unlikely--go to archery.

Oh, and I can watch some of the preciousssss.

Friday, I have to revise "King Pole, Gallows Pole, Bottle Tree."

Hey, take your vacation where you can get it.
matociquala: (problem cat)

Room! room! make room for the bouncing belly,
First father of sauce, and deviser of jelly;
Prime master of arts, and the giver of wit,
That found out the excellent engine the spit,
The plow and the flail, the mill and the hopper,
The hutch and the bolter, the furnace and copper,
The oven, the bavin, the mawkin, the peel,
The hearth and the range, the dog and the wheel.
He, he first invented the hogshead and tun,
The gimlet and vice too, and taught them to run.
And since with the funnel and hippocras bag
He has made of himself, that now he cries swag!
Which shows, though the pleasure be but of four inches,
Yet he is a weasel, the gullet that pinches
Of any delight, and not spares from the back
Whatever to make of the belly a sack!
Hail, hail, plump paunch! O the founder of taste,
For fresh meats, or powdered, or pickle, or paste;
Devourer of broiled, baked, roasted, or sod,
And emptier of cups, be they even or odd;
All which have now made thee so wide i’ the waist
As scarce with no pudding thou art to be laced;
But eating and drinking until thou dost nod,
Thou break’st all thy girdles, and break’st forth a god.

--Ben Jonson

[ profile] callunav on practice.

matociquala: (iggy pop chairman of the bored)

Oh, don't get me wrong. I actually enjoy insomnia. I'd adopt it as a permanent state if I could: I loathe sleep. What a waste of perfectly good reading time!

Lately, though, it seems as if I need seven hours a night, which is frustrating, because for most of my adult life I made do on four or five with a great deal of success. On the other hand, I have noticed a benefit: one sleepless night is now something I can deal with with equanimity. And in fact, be normal and functional the next day. Which wouldn't have happened a couple of years ago, when I was living on the very edge of my sleep requirement.

Still, I loathe sleep. I like the small hours of the morning, and I hate missing them, and I like sunrise, and I like sunset, and I like 9 am in the morning and afternoons and evenings. I hate missing any of them.

The insomnia seems to have been my the sound of my brain kicking over, anyway. I've been writing ahead of the well for some time now, constructing novels not by scooping up bucketsfulls of sweet cold ideas and gulping them, bt by painstakingly soaking up what dripped down the old stones and then squeezing it, filtering it, picking it over.

Suddenly, as of yesterday, I have a head full of stories again. I know how the rest of "Lumiere" goes, and I know a whole bunch about Dust, and I think I'm ready to take on All the Windwracked Stars and "Bone and Jewel Creatures" too. I hope. Still no inspiration for "Periastron," but it will come.

And I actually dreamed last night (usually I don't--well, okay, I know physiologically I do, but I don't remember any of it) and it was relevant dreams. There's a bunch of stuff in there that I can use in Dust. So I won't tell you about it, because it's cool and I don't want to spoil the surprise--(Hah! See, I just present the very clever illusion of never withholding information here, but it's all sleight of hand--I don't actually tell you anything)--but I will say one thing.

Forest of books, man. Forest of books.

And I know all about girl-Percival now. I could say, oh, one part Agatha Heterodyne, one part Revenge of the Nerds, except that's completely wrong. (Even more completely wrong than describing Undertow as "Little Fuzzy meets The Italian Job." *g*) But yeah, I know her. She showed up. I can see her in my head, all long light brown flyaway hair and bony elbows, and I can feel the way she moves.

I'm going to have to read a lot of Arthuriana before I sit down to write this thing, and let it infect me a little more thoroughly.

Apparently what I needed was to stay up all night watching Torchwood and Criminal Minds and reading Cook's Illustrated.

Dust seems to want chapter epigrams, so I have been collecting them. A correspondent quoted King Lear in comments to the last entry, and that made me think of them. Since epigrams (like songs and myths and scents and emotions) can be one of the things I hang a story on**, I thought I would share the ones I have picked out so far, if you don't mind.

(If I don't get to wind up calling it Dust (I suspect there might be a conflict with the Charles Pellegrino novel of the same title) then my fallback is House of Dust.)

And so:


Nothing will come of nothing: speak again.

--Shakespeare, King Lear I.i


To thee the reed is as the oak:
The sceptre, learning, physic, must
All follow this, and come to dust.

--Shakespeare, Cymbeline IV.ii


All lovers young, all lovers must
Consign to thee, and come to dust.

--Shakespeare, Cymbeline IV.ii


Tell it not in Gath; weep not at all.
In the House of Dust roll yourself in ashes.

--Micah 1:10 (my own rephrase: don't bother looking for it in a real Bible. *g*)


In my Father's house are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you.

--John 14:2, KJV


Ye are of your father the devil, and the lusts of your father ye will do.

--John 8:44 KJV


To know all is not to forgive all. It is to despise everybody.

--Quentin Crisp (and thanks to [ profile] ladegard for that one, oh many years ago.)


We were all born of flesh, in a flare of pain
We do not remember the red roots whence we rose
But we know that we rose and walked, that after a while
We shall lie down again.

--Conrad Aiken, "The House of Dust"


It is strange, this house of dust was the house I lived in
The house you lived in, the house that all of us know

--Conrad Aiken, "The House of Dust"


 And nothing I cared, at my sky blue trades, that time allows
     In all his tuneful turning so few and such morning songs
       Before the children green and golden
         Follow him out of grace.

--Dylan Thomas, "Fern Hill"


All right, even though I overslept, time for food and caffeine and work.

**Carnival, for example, proceeds heavily from my responses to a favorite Dorothy Parker sonnet, "Fair Weather." Which I think describes Angelo and Vincent rather well. Especially as it interplays with another favorite sonnet, Edna St. Vincent Millay's "Love is not all."

And of course there's Lesa, who in some part comes from an Edna St. Vincent Millay sonnet, "Women have loved before as I love now."

Here's a Millay poem that's pretty good for Dust, too, although maybe not quotable. "Here is a wound that will never heal, I know"

As for Parker, she influenced or inspired me in other ways, also. "Sounding" grows out of a response to her poem "Penelope." And probably listening to Jethro Tull's "The Whaler's Dues"


matociquala: (superbard! _ strangepowers)
So now I have confessed that he is thine,
And I my self am mortgaged to thy will,
Myself I'll forfeit, so that other mine
Thou wilt restore to be my comfort still:
But thou wilt not, nor he will not be free,
For thou art covetous, and he is kind;
He learned but surety-like to write for me,
Under that bond that him as fast doth bind.
The statute of thy beauty thou wilt take,
Thou usurer, that put'st forth all to use,
And sue a friend came debtor for my sake;
So him I lose through my unkind abuse.
Him have I lost; thou hast both him and me:
He pays the whole, and yet am I not free.

(sonnet 134)

 Whoever hath her wish, thou hast thy Will,
And Will to boot, and Will in over-plus;
More than enough am I that vexed thee still,
To thy sweet will making addition thus.
Wilt thou, whose will is large and spacious,
Not once vouchsafe to hide my will in thine?
Shall will in others seem right gracious,
And in my will no fair acceptance shine?
The sea, all water, yet receives rain still,
And in abundance addeth to his store;
So thou, being rich in Will, add to thy Will
One will of mine, to make thy large will more.
Let no unkind, no fair beseechers kill;
Think all but one, and me in that one Will.

(sonnet 135)

Happy 442nd !Birthday, Master Shakespeare.
matociquala: (make my day marlene)

It's still Blog Against Heteronormativity Day.

What lips my lips have kissed, and where, and why,
I have forgotten, and what arms have lain
Under my head till morning; but the rain
Is full of ghosts tonight, that tap and sigh
Upon the glass and listen for reply;
And in my heart there stirs a quiet pain
For unremembered lads that not again
Will turn to me at midnight with a cry.
Thus in the winter stands a lonely tree,
Nor knows what birds have vanished one by one,
Yet know its boughs more silent than before:
I cannot say what loves have come and gone;
I only know that summer sang in me
A little while, that in me sings no more.

Oh, what the hell. Let's make it two:

Thou art not lovelier than lilacs, --- no
Nor honeysuckle; thou art not more fair
Than small white single poppies, --- I can bear
Thy beauty; though I bend before thee, though
From left to right, not knowing where to go,
I turn my troubled eyes, nor here nor there
Find any refuge from thee, yet I swear
So has it been with mist, --- with moonlight so.
Like him who day by day unto his draught
Of delicate poison adds him one drop more
Till he may drink unharmed the death of ten,
Even so, inured to beauty, who have quaffed
Each hour more deeply than the hour before,
I drink --- and live --- what has destroyed some men.

Three. I can stop at three.

Women have loved before as I love now;
At least, in lively chronicles of the past—
Of Irish waters by a Cornish prow
Or Trojan waters by a Spartan mast
Much to their cost invaded—here and there,
Hunting the amorous line, skimming the rest,
I find some woman bearing as I bear
Love like a burning city in the breast.
I think however that of all alive
I only in such utter, ancient way
Do suffer love; in me alone survive
The unregenerate passions of a day
When treacherous queens, with death upon the tread,
Heedless and willful, took their knights to bed.

Like potato chips. Only awful. In the medieval sense of the word. How about "Sappho Crosses the Dark River into Hades"?

Oh, as long as we're on the topic, maybe a little Sappho (both tr. Mary Barnard)

It's no use
Mother dear, I
can't finish my
You may
blame Aphrodite

soft as she is

she has almost
killed me with
love for that boy

I have not had one word from her

Frankly I wish I were dead
When she left, she wept

a great deal; she said to me, "This parting must be
endured, Sappho. I go unwillingly."

I said, "Go, and be happy
but remember (you know
well) whom you leave shackled by love

"If you forget me, think
of our gifts to Aphrodite
and all the loveliness that we shared

"all the violet tiaras,
braided rosebuds, dill and
crocus twined around your young neck

"myrrh poured on your head
and on soft mats girls with
all that they most wished for beside them

"while no voices chanted
choruses without ours,
no woodlot bloomed in spring without song..."

And, if you like, here's still more poetry by Edna St. Vincent Millay


There will be no Ben Jonson today. Ben, while a tramp, was nevertheless heteronormative.

On the topic of poets, there's a neat story about Dorothy Parker and the notoriously difficult Lillian Hellman on NPR today.

P.S. It's also Earth Day.

matociquala: (kit icarus)
is subversive still.

Happy Blog Against Heteronormativity Day.

On Hellespont, guilty of true-love's blood,
In view and opposite two cities stood,
Sea-borderers, disjoined by Neptune's might;
The one Abydos, the other Sestos hight.
At Sestos Hero dwelt; Hero the fair,
Whom young Apollo courted for her hair,
And offered as a dower his burning throne,
Where she should sit for men to gaze upon.
The outside of her garments were of lawn,
The lining purple silk, with gilt stars drawn;
Her wide sleeves green, and bordered with a grove,
Where Venus in her naked glory strove
To please the careless and disdainful eyes
Of proud Adonis, that before her lies.
Her kirtle blue, whereon was many a stain,
Made with the blood of wretched lovers slain.
Upon her head she ware a myrtle wreath,
From whence her veil reached to the ground beneath.
Her veil was artificial flowers and leaves
Whose workmanship both man and beast deceives.
Many would praise the sweet smell as she passed,
When 'twas the odour which her breath forth cast;
And there for honey bees have sought in vain,
And, beat from thence, have lighted there again.
About her neck hung chains of pebblestone,
Which, lightened by her neck, like diamonds shone.
She ware no gloves; for neither sun nor wind
Would burn or parch her hands, but to her mind,
Or warm or cool them, for they took delight
To play upon those hands, they were so white.
Buskins of shells, all silvered used she,
And branched with blushing coral to the knee;
Where sparrows perched of hollow pearl and gold,
Such as the world would wonder to behold.
Those with sweet water oft her handmaid fills,
Which, as she went, would chirrup through the bills.
Some say for her the fairest Cupid pined
And looking in her face was strooken blind.
But this is true: so like was one the other,
As he imagined Hero was his mother.
And oftentimes into her bosom flew,
About her naked neck his bare arms threw,
And laid his childish head upon her breast,
And, with still panting rocked, there took his rest.
So lovely fair was Hero, Venus' nun,
As Nature wept, thinking she was undone,
Because she took more from her than she left,
And of such wondrous beauty her bereft.
Therefore, in sign her treasure suffered wrack,
Since Hero's time hath half the world been black.

Amorous Leander, beautiful and young,
(whose tragedy divine Musaeus sung,)
Dwelt at Abydos; since him dwelt there none
For whom succeeding times make greater moan.
His dangling tresses, that were never shorn,
Had they been cut, and unto Colchos borne,
Would have allured the vent'rous youth of Greece
To hazard more than for the golden fleece.
Fair Cynthia wished his arms might be her sphere;
Grief makes her pale, because she moves not there.
His body was as straight as Circe's wand;
Jove might have sipped out nectar from his hand.
Even as delicious meat is to the taste,
So was his neck in touching, and surpassed
The white of Pelop's shoulder. I could tell ye
How smooth his breast was and how white his belly;
And whose immortal fingers did imprint
That heavenly path with many a curious dint
That runs along his back, but my rude pen
Can hardly blazon forth the loves of men,
Much less of powerful gods. Let it suffice
That my slack Muse sings of Leander's eyes,
Those orient cheeks and lips, exceeding his
That leaped into the water for a kiss
Of his own shadow and, despising many,
Died ere he could enjoy the love of any.
Had wild Hippolytus Leander seen
Enamoured of his beauty had he been.
His presence made the rudest peasant melt
That in the vast uplandish country dwelt.
The barbarous Thracian soldier, moved with nought,
Was moved with him and for his favour sought.
Some swore he was a maid in man's attire,
For in his looks were all that men desire,
A pleasant smiling cheek, a speaking eye,
A brow for love to banquet royally;
And such as knew he was a man, would say,
"Leander, thou art made for amorous play.
Why art thou not in love, and loved of all?
Though thou be fair, yet be not thine own thrall."

Yanno, every time I read that, it strikes me. This is a poem about Hero's clothes, and Leander's arse.

That's not a comment so much as an observation, mind....

matociquala: (will)
It's a bit like reading your grandparents' love letters. Or the unsettling realization that Bill Cosby and Shari Lewis both used to be really hot. 

Happy Blog Against Heteronormativity Day.

My love is strengthened, though more weak in seeming;
I love not less, though less the show appear;
That love is merchandized, whose rich esteeming,
The owner's tongue doth publish every where.
Our love was new, and then but in the spring,
When I was wont to greet it with my lays;
As Philomel in summer's front doth sing,
And stops his pipe in growth of riper days:
Not that the summer is less pleasant now
Than when her mournful hymns did hush the night,
But that wild music burthens every bough,
And sweets grown common lose their dear delight.
Therefore like her, I sometime hold my tongue:
Because I would not dull you with my song.

 Alas! 'tis true, I have gone here and there,
And made my self a motley to the view,
Gored mine own thoughts, sold cheap what is most dear,
Made old offences of affections new;
Most true it is, that I have looked on truth
Askance and strangely; but, by all above,
These blenches gave my heart another youth,
And worse essays proved thee my best of love.
Now all is done, have what shall have no end:
Mine appetite I never more will grind
On newer proof, to try an older friend,
A god in love, to whom I am confined.
Then give me welcome, next my heaven the best,
Even to thy pure and most most loving breast.

You can read the lot here:

matociquala: (Player King)

Today is spring
As yesterday was not
And along my walk
Crocuses burst out
Minute polypiform exhortations of joy.
Snowdrops are rioting
And so are the children
And the passers-by half-catch
Your eye to smile.
Except the one lean cool young man
Head down in head phones
Who passes.

Plump and thirty
I am not pretty enough to earn out
His "hi."
I'm so much more interesting in the long run
Than his shoes.

matociquala: (Default)
On My First Daughter
Ben Jonson

Here lies, to each her parents' ruth,
Mary, the daughter of their youth;
Yet all heaven's gifts being heaven's due,
It makes the father less to rue.
At six months' end, she parted hence
With safety of her innocence;
Whose soul heaven's queen, whose name she bears,
In comfort of her mother's tears,
Hath placed amongst her virgin-train:
Where, while that severed doth remain,
This grave partakes the fleshly birth;
Which cover lightly, gentle earth!

On My First Son
Ben Jonson

Farewell, thou child of my right hand, and joy ;
My sin was too much hope of thee, lov'd boy.
Seven years thou wert lent to me, and I thee pay,
Exacted by thy fate, on the just day.
Oh, could I loose all father now ! For why
Will man lament the state he should envy?
To have so soon 'scaped world's and flesh's rage,
And if no other misery, yet age !
Rest in soft peace, and, asked, say, Here doth lie
Ben Jonson his best piece of poetry.
For whose sake henceforth all his vows be such
As what he loves may never like too much.

I think it's nice to think that these people from another time were very different from us and we've learned something since then, because then we don't have to think that we would ever say something like "Kill them all; God will know his own," or "We had to destroy the village in order to save it," or what you will.

Really, this one couplet:

Rest in soft peace, and, asked, say, Here doth lie
Ben Jonson his best piece of poetry.

just knocks me over every time.

Sorry about that, Ben.

Alright, I promise to stop spamming your reading lists with the bengeekery now. *g*


March 2017



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