Tuesday, February 04, 2014

Gecko; his frail and useful legs, his bumps

This is my daughter's pet, left behind when her sons grew up. He eats crickets and, in a pinch, mealworms. Look at the tiny bumps all over his body. See, also, how he matches the tones of the wood.
I am particularly fond of his feet. He lives in a glass aquarium on the top of her piano, and when she plays, he wakes up and does a sort of dance.

Today we had appointments, groceries and what I hoped would be a great enchilada, which was only a good one. Then I switched computers and misplaced my planned-ahead poem. But, hey! I did make some progress on Proust, early this morning. I read like crazy and got the Kindle-predicted hours to finish all seven volumes down to 73, but of course, I that means there really are weeks to go yet at this rate. The kid Marcel is still fussing about going to bed. I have read this part before, but one always starts at the beginning, doesn't one??? Well, doesn't one???

This evening I have spent on Now All Roads Lead to France; a life of Edward Thomas. Tonight, after a long apprenticeship at prose, churning out reviews and sch to support his family, he had begun to write poems. The first one he wrote was virtually completed in one day. The book only gives the beginning and the ending of the 115-line poem, in the voice of a barmaid he had conversed with and written about in his notebook. (When notebooks survive, there is a record of compositional struggles that is mostly lost in today's electronic fizzle.) But these parts are enough to tell what an interesting poem it is.


'I could wring the old thing's neck that put it here!
A public-house! it may be public for birds,
Squirrels and such-like, ghosts of charcoal burners
nd highwaymen.' The wild girl laughed. 'But I
Hate it since I came back from Kennington.
I gave up a good place.' Her cockney accent
Made her and the house seem wilder by calling up--
Only to be subdued at once by wildness--
The idea of London, there in that forest parlour,
Low and small among the towering beeches
And the one bulging butt that's like a font.


Between the open door
And the trees, two calves were wading in the pond,
Grazing the water here and there and thinking,
Sipping and thinking, both happily, neither long.
The water wrinkled, but they sipped and thought
As careless of the wind as it is of us,
'Look at those calves. Hark at the trees again.'

There is a nice discussion in the book about the metrical qualities of this poem -- as it relates to a loosely applied iambic meter. See what you think about the metrical qualities,

And here is the whole poem! On a Website called The First World War Poetry Archive!

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