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Saturday, 9 May 2009

To the Mistress of the Sailor's Rest

File:Portsmouth Point by Thomas Rowlandson.jpg

The antiquarian spirit sown in you
By your years among these splendid wrecks --
The venerable Capt. Gimp, his grizzled,
Toothless, brandy-breathing mate; the ship’s
Surgeon, an addict with an erring knife;
The idiotic cabin boy, poking with
Idle digit every crevice below decks;
The blunt armorer, blazing at forges
Long consigned by history to scrap;
The daft sailmaker, whose billowy canvas
Illusions are to these leaden wharfside skies
What poems once were to real life,
And are about as much use to it now --
Will pave your days with doubtful sunken treasures.

A Shrimp, Sir, 1799

Portsmouth Point: Thomas Rowlandson, 1811 (click on image to see the Ship's Tavern)

A Shrimp, Sir?: Thomas Rowlandson, 1799


Elmo St. Rose said...

"What poems once were to real

"A man built a boat
to sail away
then it sank"
from the Ginger Man

The common folk at life in the port. No poet among them. A few
fancy ladies to the right, Moses
Levy's money lending to left upstairs...and various frollickers,

No poet in this picture at all.
So what are the terms. "The Slinger" rode alone when he was at
his best. The fastest ontologist in
the West but it was lonely. And,
"The Figure of Outward" what is left: "an amulet of surprise.....for
love" his words will always be in the Western Cannon, now, his advice
"never be afraid" / A Virtual Day
Book a John Wayne legacy for poets
"it takes all kinds" use 'em all

I heard about a new course at
Naropa....for the disembodied
attempting verse.....So's you's
is a seeker? Let's sign you up
for the you can't transcend your
culture without knowing something
about your own culture first, and girls
and guys I don't care what your
sexual orientation is you're all
green around the edges. Yes, sir,
what's the name of the course?
POETRY BOOT CAMP with Tom Clark,
which finishes with a long Socratic
Hell-weekend, so's you's won't be
full of shit for more than your
share of it.

Truly yours
Elmo St. Rose

TC/BTP said...

Elmo, thanks for the suggestion, but I'm sorry to have to say--and many will breathe a sigh of relief--my days of (professional) pedantry are over. Were I to offer another course some time, though, it would probably be more along the lines of Everything Is Permitted, While I Take A Nap.