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Thursday, 29 November 2012

Approaching Storm Front


Study of Clouds, Rome: Pierre-Henri de Valenciennes (1750-1819), 1780s, oil on paper mounted on board, 24 x 39 cm (Musée du Louvre, Paris)

My heart, then, though small, was full -- having caught
In summer through the fractured wall a glimpse
Of daylight, at the thought of where I was

I gladdened more than if I had beheld
Before me some bright cavern of Romance,

Or than we do, when on our beds we lie
At night, in warmth, when rains are beating hard,

The radio playing -- a distant ballgame
In some city we've never seen, but dreamed,

And then, the rain driving through the night

Silences everything the passing years

Incorporate into their dying bodies,

The way stars dissolve, with long thinking,

Into the harrowed centres of themselves.

Study of Clouds over the Roman Campagna: Pierre-Henri de Valenciennes (1750-1819), 1782-1785, oil on paper mounted on paperboard, 20 x 33 cm (National Gallery of Art, Washington)


Hazen said...

¡Hombre . . .!

William A. Sigler said...

An especially haunting poem, especially the last two lines, the way the universe dissolves as soon as we learn our lessons from them.

Nora said...

I love the last lines, too. Harrow is such a lovely, laden word.

Wooden Boy said...

through the fractured wall

A good lens to look through.

There's a sense of different histories meeting here. Very beautiful.

Hazen said...

There’s a lovely presence in these lines. They burn with the pale blue light of stars, and the calm acceptance of our condition debajo de las estrellas. Coincidentally, (or not) the outflow of energy of the recently measured quasar SDSS J1106+1939 was found to be two trillion times greater than our Sun, and many times larger than anything heretofore observed. The night sky is a place of wonders.

vazambam (Vassilis Zambaras) said...

Our front went through last night--driving rain till early morning when it stopped and let a round silver platter show through behind broken grey clouds--perfect before-breakfast walk and just what the parched olives needed.

Anonymous said...


TC said...

Harrow is such a laden word as Nora reminds. It has been teeming and blowing all the livelong day and night here, bad enough on allegedly dry land, but my word -- on a boat! Pauvre Nora!

Two cows, one tree and a harrow never to be laden again, for its harrowing days are over.

If only we could learn our lessons from all this harrowing of the stars, so that the universe might at long last dissolve and have a bit of peace for once.

This could be a start on that, Hazen's poetic reflection:

"They burn with the pale blue light of stars, and the calm acceptance of our condition debajo de las estrellas... The night sky is a place of wonders."

Following from that insightful thought:

Shockwave (Wisps of the Veil)



"when on our beds we lie
At night, in warmth, when rains are beating hard"


grey white rain clouds against shadowed
plane of ridge, drops falling on bricks
in foreground, sound of wave in channel

making explicit what was in
each, being one which

in all directions, material
ideas, motion such as

grey white clouds reflected in channel,
whiteness of gull gliding toward point