Friday, October 30
. . . how hard
it is, to apprehend something so large
in scale and yet so minutely detailed.
Like trying to familiarize yourself,
exactly, with the side of a mountain:
this birch, this rock-pool, this square mosaic
yard of tesserated leaves, autumnal,
a jeweled reliquary. Trying to see
each element of the mountain and then
through them, the whole, since music is only
given to us in time, each phrase parcelled
out, in time.
-- Mark Doty, lines from "Grosse Fuge" Atlantis
Posted by rb at 10/30/2009
Thursday, October 15
Underneath the water, or inside it, is a dark grey flame:
I have seen it over and over, the same sea, the same,
slightly, indifferently swinging above the stones,
icily free above the stones,
above the stones and then the world.
If you should dip your hand in,
you wrist would ache immediately,
your bones would begin to ache and your hand would burn
as if the water were a transmutation of fire
that feeds on stones and burns with a dark gray flame.
-- Elizabeth Bishop, lines from "At the Fishhouses"
At the Fishhouses (poem and commentary by George Szirtes) (link)
Posted by rb at 10/15/2009