08 November 2008

Oh, poetry

I wish that I could do the types of posts I did in New York-- wandering the streets, finding beauty, finding those external realities that reflect my internal sustaining medium (ignore my flowery language here-- I've been discussing Tess of the D'Urbervilles again, and it makes me speak in the equivalent of a watercolor painting-- all blended, languid tones).  But unfortunately, time is a factor here, and also my discovery of such "gems" seems to be inhibited by my ignorance of this new area.  So I seek beauty in poetry.  I navigate these worlds as if they were my own.  After all, isn't that the purpose of poetry?  To give readers an alternate reality?

Edgar Lee Masters (1868–1950).  Spoon River Anthology.  1916. 

64. George Gray 

HAVE studied many times 
The marble which was chiseled for me— 
A boat with a furled sail at rest in a harbor. 
In truth it pictures not my destination 
But my life.         5
For love was offered me and I shrank from its disillusionment; 
Sorrow knocked at my door, but I was afraid; 
Ambition called to me, but I dreaded the chances. 
Yet all the while I hungered for meaning in my life. 
And now I know that we must lift the sail  10
And catch the winds of destiny 
Wherever they drive the boat. 
To put meaning in one’s life may end in madness, 
But life without meaning is the torture 
Of restlessness and vague desire—  15
It is a boat longing for the sea and yet afraid.


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