Youmans (pronounced like 'yeoman' with an 's' added) is the best-kept secret
among contemporary American writers. --John Wilson, editor, Books and Culture Marly Youmans is a novelist and poet out of sync with the times
but in tune with the ages. --First Things

Thursday, September 08, 2011

Water Day




Photograph credit:  Rain on lady's mantle
courtesy of sxc.hu and michaelaw.

Fire and Ice

Some say the world will end in fire,
Some say in ice.
From what I’ve tasted of desire
I hold with those who favor fire.
But if it had to perish twice,
I think I know enough of hate
To say that for destruction ice
Is also great
And would suffice.

    Robert Frost was a clever fellow and wonderful word twister, but at the moment it seems more likely that the world will "melt, thaw, and resolve itself into a dew."  It is our first school Water a.k.a. Rain Day, and the list of closings is very long--businesses and schools shut near and far. Lee and Irene have gone on my list for potential baddies in fiction.

12 comments:

  1. Sorry to hear this Marly. You guys have had more than your share this late summer. I hope the winter is not particularly cold or vicious.

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  2. As Robbi said. Glad to hear you are safe and snug.

    Pity the Irenes and Lees!

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  3. Yep, they are in for it!

    I guess it's bit worse than I realized, though the village is fine.

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  4. I love the work of Robert Frost. A favorite of mine while at school - where I first read him.

    Perhaps we all need to revisit such work, along with you, until the season has done its worst (hopefully already has done).
    Keep warm, and dry. Homeschooling may be on the agenda for a few days! Ma'am : )

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  5. Yep, it may be. I just heard that parts of several nearby towns are flooded. Evidently some bridges are gone, and that may make school busing pretty difficult.

    We're okay in the heart of the village here, but I want to walk down to the river and take a look because I hear that the Susquehanna is above the flood mark and predicted to be on its way to sixteen feet, and we're very near the banks. Ook, I never thought it would be a problem.

    I was trying to prod my youngest into starting his three English essays, but his response was to be powerfully overcome by sleepiness. Rainy, sleepy day. So I guess I'll go take a look.

    How is the three-room music sequence?

    I do admire Frost's metrical instincts. "The possibilities for tune from the dramatic tones of meaning struck across the rigidity of a limited metre are endless."

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  6. I like his comment about free verse, though obviously, I almost always play without a net.
    When did school start that your son already has 3! essays for English class? It sounds much more demanding than college classes here. I am slammed for giving 3 or 4 essays in 16 weeks!

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  7. They're just little journal essays... I am a bit worried about him taking nine courses plus doing sports all year. He asked me about going out for the school play and my eyes crossed.

    Frost does have some pithy remarks, doesn't he? I like the one about the poem floating on its own melting. "Like a piece of ice on a hot stove the poem must ride on its own melting."

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  8. You know, I just love his poetry. It's so easy to memorize, one can almost absorb in an osmosis type fashion.

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  9. I once presented a paper in a class by Robert Scholes for which I memorized at least five Frost poems. I was bothered because he never looked at any of the presenters. Magic. He looked at me the whole time. The power of memorization and reciting properly.

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  10. 1st and 3rd room pretty much completed. Music for the 2nd on the drawing board and going well, Marly. Thank you.

    "O hushed October morning mild,
    Thy leaves have ripened to the fall;
    Tomorrow's wind, if it be wild,
    Should waste them all."

    He used 'O'. A non-exlamation, and I like that.
    But, it would appear that October winds are not only inevitable, but inevitably... strong.
    Is there no end?

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  11. "Retard the sun with gentle mist;
    Enchant the land to amethyst."

    To address with "O" is now considered old-fashioned, but I think there is still a place for it...

    I do hope there is an end to the bad weather. At the moment it seems more like The End. Rather apocalyptic. I live right by the mouth of the Susquehanna, which is causing fits near us and especially around Binghamton and Wilkes Barre.

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  12. Drat, I left out the part about the rooms. I'm very glad you are approaching the end because--though the process is no doubt delightful--I want to hear!

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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.