Sunday, July 06, 2014

Camels and all that

This is my grandmother on a camel in Egypt, while she was touring the Holy Land and Egypt at age 90. She had broken her hip the preceding year and my mother (who took this slide) promised her this trip as a reward for working on her recovery. I think one of these camel photos made it into the Mesa, Arizona newspaper.

Tonight I was reminded of one of the first poems (except Madeline) that I memorized. Because of the structure is an easy poem to memorize and retain. I found it in a school textbook; I thought the philosophy here was very DEEP. I was in junior high.

Here it is as it appeared in that widely-loved and oft-reprinted anthology, Palgrave's Golden Treasury.

Ozymandias of Egypt
I MET a traveller from an antique land 
Who said:—Two vast and trunkless legs of stone 
Stand in the desert. Near them on the sand, 
Half sunk, a shatter'd visage lies, whose frown 
And wrinkled lip and sneer of cold command         
Tell that its sculptor well those passions read 
Which yet survive, stamp'd on these lifeless things, 
The hand that mock'd them and the heart that fed. 
And on the pedestal these words appear: 
"My name is Ozymandias, king of kings:  
Look on my works, ye mighty, and despair!" 
Nothing beside remains: round the decay 
Of that colossal wreck, boundless and bare, 
The lone and level sands stretch far away.
**Percy Bysshe Shelley

from The Golden Treasury.  1875.
Francis T. Palgrave, ed. (1824–1897)

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