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"Animystic Paranoia"
by Jan Sand
2008-02-08 09:40:32
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The bird of night
Devours sunsets,

Regurgitates the Sun at dawn
To feed the sky
With bloody light.
Then is gone.

The serpent sea
Roils its scales,
Spits flying fish,
Dolphins and whales,
Waltzes in to polish beaches
Catching clouds, the blue of sky
Wherever foaming wetness reaches,
Then retreats as if it fails,
An endless tireless busyness
With patience of a Sisyphus.

The stars and Moon, surreptitious,
Peer down at us
From blackest space.
Were a puzzle, theyre suspicious.
A most confusing human race.
We fight, we love, we manufacture,
Fill the Earth with clacking widgets.
Then, in fury, flail and fracture
With motives out of mental midgets.
Are we worthwhile, or a disgrace?

Mountains lie with hips and shoulders
Breaking up the line of sky
Outlined in bushes, trees and boulders,
Sleeping now, complete, quiescent.
To them we are evanescent,
Fragile as a passing fly.
But when they waken from their dream,
Scream with fiery rocks and steam,
Lava vomiting like Hell
Arising in a molten stream
No human force could change or quell,
The fury of the Earth released
Reveals the liberated Beast.

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 (comments policy)

Emanuel Paparella2008-02-08 15:02:55
"The true poet is all the time a visionary and whether with friends or not, as much alone as a man on his death bed." - W.B. Yeats (Add a comment)

In 1936 William Butler Yeats edited The Oxford Book of Modern Verse, 1892-1935. Absent from its pages-- to the surprise of some-- were all the poets of The Great War; summarily dismissed were Owen, Sassoon, Blunden, Rosenberg and all their comrades who had written and in some cases died during the war. Yeats explains his editorial decision in a passage from the introduction to The Oxford Book of Modern Verse:

“I have a distaste for certain poems written in the midst of the great war; they are in all anthologies, but I have substituted Herbert Read's 'End of the War' written long after. The writers of these poems were invariably officers of exceptional courage and capacity, one a man constantly selected for dangerous work, all, I think, had the Military Cross; their letters are vivid and humorous, they were not without joy-- for all skill is joyful-- but felt bound, in the words of the best known, to plead the suffering of their men. In poems that had for a time considerable fame, written in the first person, they made that suffering their own. I have rejected these poems for the same reason that made Arnold withdraw his "Empedocles on Etna" from circulation; passive suffering is not a theme for poetry. In all the great tragedies, tragedy is a joy to the man who dies; in Greece the tragic chorus danced (From the "Introduction," p. xxxiv).

Asa2008-02-08 16:00:36
The Ovi Team do follow the comments, so here is some of Jan Sand's poetry.

Sand2008-02-08 16:21:44
Whether Paparella likes it or not, one is permitted to disagree with Yeats without losing appreciation for his work. Since I am familiar with and appreciate the work of the war poets mentioned I find no reason to dismiss their output as being unworthy of poetry.

Sand2008-02-09 07:50:23
Poetry is a landscape, wild,
Where brilliant colors flash
To glow in brilliance, fertilized
By random rubble, powdered ash
Of burnt out hope, energies beguiled
By ideals, loved and hates never realized.

No man can decide that this terrain
Shall not support this or that inflorescence.
Word and thought intertwine in random clasp
To erect growths of permanence or evanescence.
Gods and golliwogs stumble, somewhat insane
Through this world no single mind can grasp.

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