The world is charged with the grandeur of God.
It will flame out, like shining from shook foil;
It gathers to a greatness, like the ooze of oil
Crushed. Why do men then now not reck his rod?
Generations have trod, have trod, have trod;
And all is seared with trade; bleared, smeared with toil;
And wears man’s smudge and shares man’s smell: the soil
Is bare now, nor can foot feel, being shod.
And for all this, nature is never spent;
There lives the dearest freshness deep down things;
And though the last lights off the black West went
Oh, morning, at the brown brink eastward, springs —
Because the Holy Ghost over the bent
World broods with warm breast and with ah! bright wings.
BY GERARD MANLEY HOPKINS
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Halp!!! I zoomed out too far!
Thanks for starting my day with loveliness–both written and visual.
This poem raises for me the question: other than GVL,do we have any other great poets working today? Please post any suggestions you have–
Off topic, but needs to be said: The Stars My Destination is a truly great science fiction novel. I finished rereading it yesterday. From Bester’s echoes of Dickens and Dumas to his spectacular plot twists and social commentary, I loved it. Gerard, thanks for convincing me to jaunte into it again.
I just finished the book a few days ago. Most fun I’ve had in a long time. I finished it the same day I started it. I haven’t done that in a very long time.
In my opinion we’ve many great poets at work. The thing is, to reach an audience or make a living they’ve gone back to the bards with a lyre, troubadours, method of presenting their work. Leonard Cohen, started, for example, as a poet and novelist. He was critically acclaimed but largely unknown until he tied his words to music.
I tried to talk GVL into setting some of his work to music, to reach a larger audience.
Shucky darn, my son & I after a few beers played/sang/recorded GVL’s ‘Closing Time In …’ & sent it to him. Our suggestion was if we could make something almost (OK almost, almost barely) listenable, think what even an adequate tunesmith could do with it!
Alas, we couldn’t get the old, set in his ways, crumudgeon excited ’bout tuning it.
And a parenthetical aside: ( Disclosure, I must admit to being even more crumidgeonly than him, I’ve almost a decade on the young whippersnapper.)
So! Yep there’s real poetry produced in this day and age. Written, spoken, verse however seems to be defined and delimited by the woke, read the works of any proclaimed poet laureates today. I randomly started reading one located down in Florida. He notes his poem was created to bring awareness to the disparities in healthcare.
Still, good written verse is available Anne, check out the small literary journals like The Alaskan Quarterly Review: https://aqreview.org/product/vol-36-no-3-4-winter-spring-2020/
It’s not The Wormwood Review from back in the day, but ’tain’t bad.
Meanwhile, this evening I’ll settle down with a shot of Jameson’s and Stephen Vincent Benet’s Western Star.
Dear James O’Neil :
Thank you so much for your post. Your effort to get GVL set to music is a worthy cause! Because you mentioned Jameson’s I was prompted to go to the headwaters–it was only about a week ago that I heard this mentioned on BBC radio. The entire list is at the bottom, but I think you will enjoy the descriptions of some of these. https://www.irishtimes.com/culture/books/ireland-s-thriving-literary-magazine-scene-space-for-tradition-and-experimentation-1.3496202
“”Alas, we couldn’t get the old, set in his ways, crumudgeon excited ’bout tuning it.””
Oh all right then.
GVL: Does this mean you will put some words to music?
I think a song about fire might be important today.
Thanks for the link Anne, I’m checking them out.
James O’Neil–Your welcome!
GVL–I meant to say fire(s) both kinds. I apologize for even making the suggestion!
Only you can design what GVL will create, whatever it becomes we will all be blessed!
“God gave Moses the rainbow sign.
No more water but the fire next time…”