D. T.

August 28, 2012 § Leave a comment

“I fellowed sleep who kissed me in the brain,”

Meditations In An Emergency

August 27, 2012 § Leave a comment

It’s as if I were carrying a horse on my shoulders
and I cannot see his face. His iron legs
hang down to the earth on either side of me
like the arch of triumph in Washington Square.
I would like to beat someone with him
but I can’t get him off my shoulders, he’s like evening.

Evening! Your breeze is an obstacle,
it changes me, I am being arrested,
and if I mock you into a face
and, disgusted, throw down the horse–ah! there’s his face!
and I am, sobbing, walking on my heart.

— from an Ode of Frank O’Hara’s

Shelley:

August 26, 2012 § Leave a comment

To —

I

One word is too often profaned

For me to profane it,

One feeling too falsely disdained

For thee to disdain it;

One hope is too like despair

For prudence to smother,

And pity from thee more dear

Than that from another.

II

I can give not what men call love,

But wilt thou accept not

The worship the heart lifts above

And the Heavens reject not, –

The desire of the moth for the star,

Of the night for the morrow,

The devotion to something afar

From the sphere of our sorrow?

Mandelstam:

August 26, 2012 § Leave a comment

“Who knows what happiness is? Perhaps it is better to talk in more concrete terms of the fullness or intensity of experience.”

Chysanthemum, Piet Mondrian

August 25, 2012 § Leave a comment

Chysanthemum, 1909

(Cambridge, 2010)

August 24, 2012 § Leave a comment

I wake and feel the fell of dark, not day.
What hours, O what black hours we have spent
This night! what sights you, heart, saw; ways you went!
And more must, in yet longer light’s delay.
With witness I speak this. But where I say
Hours I mean years, mean life. And my lament
Is cries countless, cries like dead letters sent
To dearest him that lives alas! away.

I am gall, I am heartburn. God’s most deep decree
Bitter would have me taste: my taste was me;
Bones built in me, flesh filled, blood brimmed the curse.
Selfyeast of spirit a dull dough sours. I see 
The lost are like this, and their scourge to be
As I am mine, their sweating selves, but worse. 


— Gerard Manley Hopkins

from ‘An Ordinary Evening in New Haven’ by Wallace Stevens

August 21, 2012 § Leave a comment

XI

In the land of the lemon trees, yellow and yellow were
Yellow-blue, yellow-green, pungent with citron-sap,
Dangling and spangling, the mic-mac of mocking birds.

In the land of the elm trees, wandering mariners
Looked on big women, whose ruddy-ripe images
Wreathed round and round the round wreath of autumn.

They rolled their r’s, there, in the land of the citrons.
In the land of big mariners, the words they spoke
Were mere brown clods, mere catching weeds of talk.

When the mariners came to the land of the lemon trees,
At last, in that blond atmosphere, bronzed hard,
They said, “We are back once more in the land of the elm trees,

But folded over, turned round.” It was the same,
Except for the adjectives, an alteration
Of words that was a change of nature, more

Than the difference that clouds make over a town.
The countrymen were changed and each constant thing.
Their dark-colored words had redescribed the citrons.

Where Am I?

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