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Friday, April 07, 2006 


Each word guarded, the tone neutral always;
And thus we walk ,with a tentative tread.
Counting small victories in banal days
reassuringly, to stolidity wed.

For it clutches at our insides, this dread
of falling prey to passion. On thin ice,
One mustn't listen to stray tunes in the head;
and dancing in gay abandon's unwise.

Remnants of the past remain in my eyes :
twinkling, chilled floes. For once we chose,
to look at stars, believe their warming lies.
In Numbness, Bliss; pain receded, as the heart froze.

Enemy Sunshine! Seeking to thaw, warm glow
We're done with all Stars , do you not know ?


One poem that will do the rounds now, as it does every year at this time, is this.

The famous lines that cause this annual recall, are of course relatively well known :

APRIL is the cruellest month, breeding
Lilacs out of the dead land, mixing
Memory and desire, stirring
Dull roots with spring rain.

But someone somewhere brought out these lines, that are from the last section, to ponder over :

"The awful daring of a moment's surrender
Which an age of prudence can never retract..."

We all think foolishness will not strike us. That we are armoured in practicality, experience, wisdom and luck. Which makes it all the worse when we do slip !

Preen moment : The format, as per this. ( Do not look too closely though :) )

Umm! (There were more m but were edited out most cruelly in this cruel cruel month:| )

What do I make of this?
It is as beautiful and stylish as any- do not expect a critique on form from me. I have not have the benefit of being tutored in Sonnets- Spensers or others' And then, I do tend to look right in with my X ray eyes through the cosmetic appearances, dive right bin to the heart of the matter. Yes the theme is austere but the imagery recalls my darling Donne.

Ressurection? In Lent, towards Easter week- yes there is much we need to deny ourselves, excesses to be excised, introspection and circumspection to the fore, but faith? Can we be denied our faith? Can we not dare hope for ressurection of faith? Or is this the doubts before knowledge of Easter Sunday? Can that ressurection be guarded, dreading the passionate rush of divine love? Can I please have a glimmer of hope?

In case this is not a christian poem at all- why the imagery? Hopkins would not approve. At a practical level, I may just print it off and paste it prominently around me to reign me in when I often stray from the path of stolidity, and rant against the world, the stars and even the sun.

And having written this tome here, I shall desist from adding fulsome praise for the Eliotic lines. :p

Heh, ma'am.

Resurrection : The correct answer would be that Lent, as per accepted point of view, is a temporary denial of pleasure till the Celebrations of Easter. However, the poem seeks to put forward another :that Lent is a mere refusal of daily excess, a reminder that we can (and should, for safety's sake) get by in austere fashion.

The actual answer is that it is a silly joke; Eliot's The Waste Land has Part I named " The Burial of the Dead".


Not tutored in Sonnet writing ma'am : the engineering curricula do lean to much syntactic teaching of languages, only they tend to be of the programming variety :) For the record, several mismatches in the iambs remain in the poem.

And Hopkins ? May the Gods, Christian or otherwise, forbid that I grow into his morbid outlook! Our general good cheer is cause of loud complaint in the neighbourhood :) It is only in the blog that we become Sighnor De Pressed.

And to think that that most precious of compliments (Donne one) has been lost on you!

Cheer on...

You speak of guarded words and neutral tones. And then of being tentative and banal days filled with dread and frozen hearts. But you seem rather well. Or is it just me :P

"How much I loved that way you had
Of smiling most, when very sad,
A smile which carried tender hints
Of delicate tints
And warbling birds,
Of sun and spring,
And yet, more than all other thing,
Of Weariness beyond all Words! "

Ph : Do *not* give us tag lines to get smarmily sentimental :)
(or rather, do :)) )

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