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Showing posts from January 16, 2011

Elevating Gossip: "It Takes a Hero to Make a Poem"

I was trying to dig up a Robert Frost quote today that had something to do with my book, and I came across a great old BBC interview of Frost explaining what he meant when he said the poem is a "momentary stay against confusion."  So many gems in there. Here's one of my favorites: "One of the three great things in the world is gossip, you know. First there's religion; and then there's science; and there's - and then there's friendly gossip. Those are the three - the three great things. Philosophy is just a thing that trims religion, you know - that prunes it and all that. And you've got science. And you've got this: the biggest of all, is gossip - our interest in each other ." Where does that leave us writers? Ha. Eavesdropping little gossip-mongers.  Which is nothing to  be ashamed of, if Frost is right:  "It is hero-worship, you see, and one of the things that makes you go, is making a hero out of somebody that nobody el

Cutting Through the Dregs...

 The dregs of winter upon us, I needed a little Hardy today. Maybe you do, too, so I share. The Darkling Thrush by Thomas Hardy I leant upon a coppice gate     When Frost was spectre-gray, And Winter's dregs made desolate     The weakening eye of day. The tangled bine-stems scored the sky     Like strings of broken lyres, And all mankind that haunted nigh     Had sought their household fires. The land's sharp features seemed to be     The Century's corpse outleant, His crypt the cloudy canopy,     The wind his death-lament. The ancient pulse of germ and birth     Was shrunken hard and dry, And every spirit upon earth     Seemed fervourless as I. At once a voice arose among     The bleak twigs overhead In a full-hearted evensong     Of joy illimited; An aged thrush, frail, gaunt, and small,     In blast-beruffled plume, Had chosen thus to fling his soul     Upon the growing gloom. So little cause for carolings     Of such ecstatic sou