August 29, 2014

Shine, Perishing Republic


While this America settles in the mould of its vulgarity, heavily thickening to empire,
And protest, only a bubble in the molten mass, pops and sighs out, and the mass hardens,
I sadly smiling remember that the flower fades to make fruit, the fruit rots to make earth.
Out of the mother; and through the spring exultances, ripeness and decadence; and home to the mother.

You making haste, haste on decay: not blameworthy; life is good, be it stubbornly long or suddenly
A mortal splendor: meteors are not needed less than mountains: shine, perishing republic.
But for my children, I would have them keep their distance from the thickening center; corruption
Never has been compulsory, when the cities lie at the monster's feet there are left the mountains.

And boys, be in nothing so moderate as in love of man, a clever servant, insufferable master.
There is the trap that catches noblest spirits, that caught -- they say -- God, when he walked on earth.

-- Robinson Jeffers

Posted by Vanderleun at August 29, 2014 2:10 PM
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"It is impossible to speak in such a way that you cannot be misunderstood." -- Karl Popper N.B.: Comments are moderated and may not appear immediately. Comments that exceed the obscenity or stupidity limits will be either edited or expunged.

Jeffers is among my favorite poets, by favorite being Yeats.

Posted by: Bob Sykes at January 26, 2009 5:33 AM

I keep hoping . . .

but not much.

On a pro-active note:

Anthony at WUWT just posted that he is looking for someone in Key West to check out a surface station.

Posted by: Cathy at January 26, 2009 1:31 PM

How wonderful it is that someone (other than myself) still reads and appreciates Robinson Jeffers!

Posted by: Francis W. Porretto at January 26, 2009 2:15 PM

Find your own poems, man! We've got an unlikely synchronicity going on:

(Oh well, Jeffers would probably find us both to be vulgar in our own ways).

Posted by: Novalis at January 27, 2009 7:23 AM

I never was much of a Jeffers fan until I toured his Tor House in Carmel...highly recommended.

Posted by: ken at January 27, 2009 3:27 PM

I have loved Jeffers poetry since my disaffected teens. He was without doubt a commie, and even though I am one no longer, the poems still resound.

Posted by: teresa at January 27, 2009 7:11 PM

Dear Cathy, thank you for remembering. A soulmate in the ether!

Jeffers has this nagging quality. You keep thinking, Do I really understand him?

I believe Jeffers referred to himself as an anti-humanist. Certainly, that's the gist of his poems. Communism doesn't seem to fit him. I would not be surprised if some environmentalists embraced him. Not the watermelons, the paleoliths.

Also, Jeffers himself built at least some of the Tor House.

Posted by: bob sykes at April 23, 2012 3:12 AM