In this last week I have attended a funeral and a memorial. I have expressed condolences to two grieving families. Tears have flowed. And I am not the one who has mourning as intensely: they are not my family. The older poets knew this. However, there is something deeper here. Vaughan was an Anglo-Catholic living […]Read More → A time to mourn.
This is a sonnet on religion, but the dark side. Oscar Wilde is not normally accounted as a religious poet. But this is religious, and involves martyrs and saints. The Turks killed 5000 people in 1876. Oscar Wilde accused Christ of being uncaring five years later. In 2000, the independent Bulgaria, after a century of […]Read More → Sunday Sonnet.
I am looking for Sunday Sonnets, but they have to be religious. Stella is not: though the imagery is of Apollo and his chariot, the content is that Stella does not sunburn. Her skin is golden. And in love, these particulars matter. The Luminarium text, which I have copied unaltered, has Elizabethan typography, so the […]Read More → Saturday Sonnet
This is the last sonnet in the Psalm cycle that Anne Locke wrote. In it, she contrasts the celebration of temple worship with her status, and her wish to join the congregation with an assurance of her salvation. Locke was no gnostic. She knew that from the fear of God came the found of wisdom, […]Read More → Sunday Sonnet.
The pursuit of love can ruin one’s youth, but the modern in me says that there are worse things: from the love of the virtual to depgeneration, from waifu to heroin. For Sydney at least knew his Plato. We are fallen: we think that the ancients cannot teach us, for they are white, male, and […]Read More → Saturday Sonnet.
Blake may talk about a mental fight building Jerusalem in England’s land. Blake was wrong. The fight is not mental: it is either spiritual or physical. I am sure I have used this before, but here the contrast between the reformed and the romantic is clear. Blake was too enamoured with nature, and bended the […]Read More → Sunday Sonnet
The poet sees suicide as murder: consider the second line… that murthring boy… who shot himself. No woman is worth self-immolation. None. But the poet indicates that was his thought. We are losing too many. A person can wind up in a vicious downward cycle that doesn’t end. It’s extremely hard to break on your […]Read More → Saturday Sonnet.
This morning, after the text, always after the text, I read the post from Cambria, and he referred to an old poem. The dream of the Rood is one of the first religious Christian poems in English. From a people who had been northern Pagans, who venerated the ancient trees, and had killed men on […]Read More → This is going to be long.
This is a poem about exiles, remittance men, outlaws. And the cost of their fleeing. Before interpol and extradition. And from the days where the distant reaches of the empire held those who England had rejected. Such men made the Antipodes. The Broken Men 1902 For things we never mention, For Art misunderstood — For […]Read More → Kipple beyond the pale
The Psalm has 19 verses, so the poet continues. This is, after all, a meditation on Psalm 51, and the sexual themes of the penitent date to the psalm if not the poet. But the verse for this is the seventeenth The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit; a broken and contrite heart, O […]Read More → Sunday Sonnet