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Saturday, October 21, 2006

Reading in paradise, etc. & Poetry aphorisms

All is forgiven; or,
"acquired," like a virus

I dropped the Grumpy Old Bookman from my Links because he annoyed me so very mightily one sunny morning in spring. Now I am adding him back again, on this nasty fall day with yellow leaves stuck to all the windows. "Something of an acquired taste," he says. Taste acquired, particularly in the region of truth-telling about the inner tickings of publishers.

Love books, want job?

"The Defense Department needs you to work in 'one of today's most challenging, interesting and rewarding environments,' according to a recent advertisement for chief librarian at the Guantanamo Bay prison in Cuba."

"Researching the penal code"

What book-loving librarians look like these days, and how the boy lawyers react. Book links via TigerHawk--and both those were sent to me by Mike, energetic blog reader.

Poetry Aphorisms, continued

aphorism no. 60, or the "Fret not, poet" aphorism
The size of the poetic gift is of no moment: only the harmonious shaping of it in air.

aphorism no. 59, the Genesis aphorism
The origin of poetry is in the death of one’s twin—something that near and intimate.

aphorism no. 58, the Bad Frolic aphorism
There is a perverse delight in reading the very worst poetry.

aphorism no. 57, or the Meaning of Life aphorism
Existence is a dry bone unless it is fleshed in the sublime uselessness of poetry.

aphorism no. 56, the Tweaking Critics aphorism
There is no such thing as realism in poetry or, indeed, in anything that is not reality.

Photograph, "balance prime," courtesy of and Anatoli Styf of Tallinn, Estonia.


  1. I hope her heel breaks :P

    Thats so bad of me. I had a friend who taught computers to inmates at the big prison here and she said men were would do all kinds of gross out stuff in class. Nothing ever fazed her though, she always looked like you could drag her behind a truck and she would just get up and dust herself off.

    SHe is working in public school in Florida now and had to row to class one day because of the floods.

    I liked your bit about the overalls the other day. I get that. It was poignant.

  2. M. is ferrying and such: long weekend. Very long.

    We get the gross-out stuff in the kitchen, too. But most of us don't wear stripes (just the baseball fans.)

  3. Yes No 58 is so true - same goes for out-of-tune singing and playing...and bad acting.

    And yes, 57. Exactly so...

  4. Lots of bons mots and more, but don't tell me poetry is useless, because I don't believe you. And don't ask me to what uses I put poetry, because I won't tell you.

  5. An aphorism never coincides with the truth: it is either a half-truth or one-and-a-half truths.
    -- Karl Kraus


Alas, I must once again remind large numbers of Chinese salesmen and other worldwide peddlers that if they fall into the Gulf of Spam, they will be eaten by roaming Balrogs. The rest of you, lovers of grace, poetry, and horses (nod to Yeats--you do not have to be fond of horses), feel free to leave fascinating missives and curious arguments.