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A few thoughts about my political comments on this forum.
Posted by: Knygatin (IP Logged)
Date: 28 May, 2019 06:45PM
Some may wonder why I on occasion keep bringing up critically political comments about how society is run. It is because I am disgusted by it.

I am also stimulated by contrasts. The ugly and corrupted makes beauty stand out all the more; ugliness stirs up my passion and motivation to reach out for beauty, the spiritual, and the cosmically fantastic. I abhor what they have done to the World. I see it and it increases my idealism.

Where did the sense of Wonder go? That individuals like Ray Bradbury, Carl Sagan, and Arthur C. Clark, transmitted so enthusiastically through TV in the 70s and early 80s? When people were mentally active, inspired, using their own imaginations to complement and reach out. It has gradually petered out, and caring and enthusiasm has been replaced by Satanism, yes, by a satanic, egoistic materialism; individualism aimed to weaken and sunder our collective social cultural groups and nations, to blindly serve the NWO rulers. Good old fantasy has been replaced by garish Hollywood surface images, gaudily sophisticated, but without depth or meaning, or worse, battened with insidious political propaganda to lead us down the NWO path. This tinsel garbage people consume, mentally enslaved. Eyes fixed on their screens, and mobile phones, always looking down, never up, never soaring.

If that collective sense of Wonder is still around, I would be grateful if someone could point me in the direction, because I don't see it. My medicine has been to try isolate myself from the enforced changes of society, hold on to the old ways. But it often seems impossible to stand apart completely.

And I am also appalled by the general indifference people show towards this. I want everybody to stand up and fight, take a clear stand against it, and stop being so meekly conforming to the global-spanning decadence. Everybody on the Eldritch Dark. Every famous author, every person in publishing and in literary criticism. Make a stand! Don't accept this. Our highly evolved cultural society is at stake. Our resources could have been used to further develop science, to reach for the stars; instead we are now being robbed, sundered, and tricked down a path of cultural anarchy, national poverty, and spiritual barbarism. It is so sad because it doesn't have to be like this, if only people collectively woke up out of their pc slumber. Those who have read Lovecraft's letters, know that he saw all of this coming. And for those of you who can't see it simply by looking around you at society, then at least seeing political leaders and presidents (Obama, Bush, Merkel) at offhand public moments use their hands to do the sign of the horn and the delta sign, will perhaps start you reflecting. And for the record, this is not "hate speech", I am not a "hater", as the NWO rulers would term me; I am driven by love.

Sometimes I wonder if it because of me that some have stopped writing on the Eldritch Dark. That they find me aggressive, thinking it unpleasant. I admit that I am aggressive, but it is an aggressiveness that stems from a burning sense of righteousness, not from viciousness or cruelty. I wish I would be less interested in politics, and be able to float above it, but up until now I just can't. Sorry. At least it doesn't happen very often. If the old guard wish me banned from the forum, and it will increase CAS activity, then so be it.

Of course, according to current liberal relativism (nothing is absolute, everything goes, no one is more right than anyone else, every individual who makes a statement is equally, and only equally, right to everyone else's opinions (a perversion of Voltaire's famous statement on free speech), based on a corrupted socialistic idea of every human being's exact equal value, right, and ability (this again is a devious psychological tool for extreme individualism, calculated to sunder apart our society. Yes, NWO mix socialism, capitalism, and superficial individualism, all being temptations serving their purpose to herd the masses), and since empiricism, science, and sensible reason is of very low esteem in today's emotionally dominated infantile "democratic" communication in which everyone "has the right to be right" no matter how disoriented* (this is not directed at anyone I communicate with on this forum, but is more my view on current society as a whole); as long as that statement is relatively meaningless or does not conflict with the NWO agenda, otherwise it will not be seen as free opinion, but "hate speech"), I must lower myself meekly down, grovel, and say, ... this is only my ... personal opinion. :/


* This is the reason I don't believe in democracy, intellectually undemanding democracy, because it is confused, arbitrary, unstable, and easily swayed. Politicians should not be decision-makers, they are not competent enough. I believe in technocracy being the best alternative.

Re: A few thoughts about my political comments on this forum.
Posted by: Dale Nelson (IP Logged)
Date: 28 May, 2019 08:57PM
Knygatin, the main concern I -- though not very active here at ED -- would have, is that political discussions at sites devoted to imaginative literature can have a way of getting very heated, with people becoming exasperated. I'm thinking of the Science Fiction and Fantasy Chronicles Forums site. There, there formerly was a place for discussing current affairs. For a long time, I didn't participate. When I did, it didn't always bring out the best in me -- nor, I suppose, in others. Eventually the moderators closed that part of the site. This was a few years ago. Since then, I have been happy that the mods made that decision. Chrons has thus continued to be a good place to go for discussing books, film, etc. in the sff genres.

There are sites out there, I'm sure, for rough-and-tumble discussion, pontificating, and even earnest and well-thought-out expositions of people's serious thought.

I'm not taking a stand, here and now, on whether ED should continue to have a place for commentary such as you indicate. I would regret your being "banned," and, so far as I know, no one is suggesting that. It's up to the active participants here, and/or the moderator(s), to decide whether to continue to extend hospitality to commentary of this type or not. I just hope that, if ED does go there, that civility -- surely one of the virtues you would approve -- will reign.

I recommend this essay by Christopher Beha, "Winning the Peace," from Harper's magazine.

[harpers.org]

Note: I approve the author's advocacy of discussion -- informal or scholarly -- that leaves aside the wretched politicization that the author decries. I would not necessarily endorse all of the attitudes that one might infer to be those of Mr. Beha.

Should there be further discussion of whether, and if so under what guidelines, political discussion should go on here at ED? And should it be here, in this particular thread, or under a knew thread?

With best wishes to Knygatin and all.

DN

Re: A few thoughts about my political comments on this forum.
Posted by: Knygatin (IP Logged)
Date: 29 May, 2019 02:08AM
Thank you Dale Nelson for a very good and well thought through post.

If political discussion should be allowed on ED, then I think, since there is no separate sub-forum for it, that at least as a basic rule, they should stick to a thread like this one clearly marked for it, and not enter impromptu into other discussions and so derail them.

As far as I remember, I am the only person here who have initiated political discussions. And I am really not eager to swing myself further into such discussions, because they draw a lot of my energy and are exhausting. But sometimes it comes over me involuntarily and I can't help myself.

Re: A few thoughts about my political comments on this forum.
Posted by: Dale Nelson (IP Logged)
Date: 29 May, 2019 08:44AM
A further suggestion for any political discussion here:

Perhaps we could agree that the word "politics" itself needs to be understood as prominently including (though not limited to) the effort to find common ground with those with whom we disagree and to persuade them to think and act in accordance with our own convictions.

Today "politics" itself tends to suggest what, in fact, we've been seeing for years in Congress and elsewhere, namely attempts to suppress those with whom one's faction disagrees, etc. I have a glum view of our near future, for one thing because college campuses (I am a recently retired associate professor of English) have become so strongly marked by efforts of some students and faculty to suppress those with whom they disagree, etc.

Back of such activity seems to be a delusion, the wish that, somehow, the people with whom they disagree will just somehow go away.

No matter who the people are with whom one disagrees, in these United States they almost certainly are not going to go away.

A more realistic and beneficial politics will probably be that which negotiates for compromises permitting strongly differing groups to live together and for a decent amount of business for the common good to be accomplished.

Surely there still remains at least a little common ground that could be discovered? For example, can't the factions agree on this, that we who live in the present exercise a great deal of power over a helpless constituency, to whom we have serious obligations: I mean whoever's going to be born and living after we are dead. Unfortunately, I don't see that any prominent faction in our current political arena seems much concerned about them: hence, to mention just one thing, the appalling national indebtedness. As a nation, we all seem to want to indulge ourselves in an artificially high standard of living, and load the debt onto the future generations.

Thus, I see decadence as pervasive. It's not simply a left-wing thing or a right-wing thing, a white thing or a minority group thing, an atheist or a religious person thing, but something in which just about everyone today is implicated.

Many years ago (22 January 1977) I first read a 1943 essay called "On the Reading of Old Books." The author there makes a plea to serious readers to read old books too rather than reading just books of one's own time. He argues that, when we read just the books of our own time, we fail to recognize that there are usually unrecognized common assumptions even between bitter opponents and the figureheads of very different factions. "We may be sure that the characteristic blindness of the twentieth century -- the blindness about which posterity will ask, 'But how could they have thought that?' -- lies where we have never suspected it, and concerns something about which there is untroubled agreement between Hitler and President Roosevelt or between Mr. H. G. Wells and Karl Barth. None of us can fully escape this blindness, but we shall certainly increase it, and weaken our guard against it, if we read only modern books. Where they are true they will give us truths which we half knew already. Where they are false they will aggravate the error with which we are already dangerously ill The only palliative is to keep the clean sea breeze of the centuries blowing through our minds, and this can be done only by reading old books. Not, of course, that there is any magic about the past. People were no cleverer then than they are now; they made as many mistakes as we. But not the same mistakes. They will not flatter us in the errors we are already committing; and their own errors, being now open and palpable, will not endanger us. ...To be sure, the books of the future would be just as good a corrective as the books of the past, but unfortunately we cannot get at them."

That passage has been one of the most important ones for a near-lifetime's reading, and it seems to suggest some helpful insights into politics. Do we have any truly well-read members of Congress any more? When was the last time we had a president whose thinking showed evidence that the "clean sea breeze of the centuries" blew through his mind?

I guess I digress.

Re: A few thoughts about my political comments on this forum.
Posted by: Knygatin (IP Logged)
Date: 29 May, 2019 09:39AM
Dale Nelson Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
...
> the Science Fiction and Fantasy Chronicles Forums
> site. There, there formerly was a place for
> discussing current affairs. For a long time, I
> didn't participate. When I did, it didn't always
> bring out the best in me -- nor, I suppose, in
> others. Eventually the moderators closed that
> part of the site. This was a few years ago.
> Since then, I have been happy that the mods made
> that decision. Chrons has thus continued to be a
> good place to go for discussing books, film, etc.
> in the sff genres.

Chronicles is a very good forum, with some excellent discussions. It even has a separate CAS forum: Chronicles Clark Ashton Smith. I quite often go there when searching for information about particular authors. But I feel that it also has a silent political undertone, a consensus of established political agreement. That is one reason I have not registered, my driven point of view would likely cause upset reactions.
The Eldritch Dark feels more rugged, strongly individual and self assured, no one here cares much about politics nor is impressed by unconventional pronouncements.

Re: A few thoughts about my political comments on this forum.
Posted by: Dale Nelson (IP Logged)
Date: 29 May, 2019 12:34PM
I'll refer anyone who's following this thread back to the Christopher Beha essay in Harper's to which I provided a link. I value Chrons, and ED, primarily as places for literary discussions. It's real people who write at both, so it's nice that there is some leeway allowed for discussion also that isn't strictly germane to sf, fantasy, Clark Ashton Smith, etc. But, personally, I would hope that, in general, both places would be and remain places for the literary discussions suggested by the sites' titles. Beha urges that we need places for good things away from politics. I agree.

However, there's still the matter that one of the main authors discussed here, Lovecraft, was much interested in social topics (I'm not sure he was much interested in politics in the sense of following current Congressional discussions, and the like -- I rather think not). Something I now wonder about, but (frankly) am not interested in Lovecraft enough to look into on my own, is what concrete policies Lovecraft would have favored as expressions of his racial attitudes.

Here are some speculations. Lovecraft would not have favored lynchings. (I hope not.) I suspect he would have favored what became known as "redlining," i.e. the reservation of neighborhoods for whites, not telling black Americans about houses for rent or sale in them. He would have approved separate public drinking fountains for whites and others, while thinking that there ought to be drinking fountains for non-whites -- not that they should have to do without or drinking from pumps set up for watering animals. He would have approved an immigration policy that would favor people from northern European countries, while generally denying entrance to applicants from sub-Saharan Africa, etc. I'm not sure if he would have denied entrance to colleges to members of minority groups who (somehow, despite disadvantaged backgrounds) passed admissions tests. I imagine that he would thought that black Americans could go to black colleges to train for teaching careers -- in all-black schools; but I suspect he would have disapproved of a qualified black graduate teaching in classrooms with white pupils.

And so on. But one must grant (a) that Lovecraft's views may have been changing late in his life and (b) in the absence of evidence, we really are just speculating if we venture comments such as those in the preceding paragraph. But the point in the first paragraph remains. However, I suspect that, here at ED or elsewhere, the matter of Lovecraft's attitudes has been pretty thoroughly explored already.

Most readers will probably concede that Lovecraft would be forgotten today if he had written nothing but his copious essays, poems, letters, etc. on political or social topics. Rather, people encounter his fiction and become Lovecraft fans, and, curious about his unusual personality, and perhaps hoping for some flicker of the qualities they associate with his stories, they explore these writings.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 29 May 19 | 01:05PM by Dale Nelson.

Re: A few thoughts about my political comments on this forum.
Posted by: Boyd (IP Logged)
Date: 29 May, 2019 05:24PM
I would personally rather see people stick to the topic of the site. There are a thousand other places to debate 'politics'. I understand there is no mutual exclusivity here.

In particular, please try not to hijack a post on one topic and completely repurpose it to your own ends.

However, I won't be doing anything to stop you. You may have noticed I don't much of anything around here lately. So maybe stick to one or 2 threads which will make it easier for others to ignore if they so choose.

Thanks,
Boyd.

Re: A few thoughts about my political comments on this forum.
Posted by: Sawfish (IP Logged)
Date: 31 May, 2019 07:26PM
Quite simply, I've viewed this site as a last refuge from the over-amped hyperbole one encounters elsewhere, almost universally. I can bear to discuss human nature here--our views of it, its flaws/strengths, and perhaps the direction culture appears to be taking, and historical/philosophical reasons for any such drift.

But I'm not prepared to ascribe the causes of any maladies to political leadership or lack of it. To me, this is crass and simple-minded buck-passing, because I hope that everyone here realizes that the causes of our problems, and also our successes, are in the main internal, and not external.

If The Eldritch Dark becomes yet another forum for partisan whining, count me out.

Sawfish
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
"Life is a tragedy to those who feel, a comedy to those who think."

Re: A few thoughts about my political comments on this forum.
Posted by: Dale Nelson (IP Logged)
Date: 31 May, 2019 07:53PM
Well said, Sawfish. I particularly appreciated your middle three sentences.

Re: A few thoughts about my political comments on this forum.
Posted by: Knygatin (IP Logged)
Date: 3 June, 2019 07:35AM
I will try to curb my passionate outspokenness on philosophy/politics/psychology/sociology/culture/ethnology/spirituality. And will try to follow Boyd's preference, since, after all, he is the owner of this website. Even if I think discussion about Clark Ashton Smith may be difficult to keep from straying into branching subjects, considering how many things are connected and interrelate. (I used to visit a telescope forum, and it is somewhat easier to stick to such a clearly circumscribed topic. But with ART!? ...)

And of course I would hate to see exalted Sawfish go, like so many others have gone. I humbly back down, since it is overall for the best.
And I will try not to repeat that "I prefer poetry in prose, to verse". Some find this a particularly vicious thing to say, for example Absquatch compared it to twisting a knife in the back of the last remaining vestige of a dying art form, the first verbal art form to appear (personally I believe the art of mythic tales around the old camp fires appeared before the more stilted verse form). I certainly don't devalue verse poets, but I personally find verse more awkward to get through, and also less detailed on its canvas than prose (many argue that verse does not need to be as descriptively detailed, because it is more "exact", and that this exactness obliquely stirs up those untold images not directly painted; although from my reading experience I find it hard to agree. And also, a poet does not automatically become more exact, or a greater artist, only because he/she writes in verse form, as if that be a contracted guarantee by itself; although many in today's society seem to naively think so of themselves in a hurry of self aggrandizement.) I generally prefer the profusely nuanced subtleties in a painting or etching by Rembrandt, to the perfected economic brush strokes in a Chinese ink sheet. But some particular thoughts I agree may lend themselves better to verse; a specific insight or relative observation that is so central and important that one wants to savor it alone. I have fine permanent memories from verse poems, but since my sensibilities are mainly visual, I prefer the more painterly qualities of prose. Admitted, I am rarely if ever completely satisfied with stories, finding in them too much filler and too many stale bridges, and thinking that the prose could always potentially be so much more refined, to the point, existentially essential, and never in a single sentence relaxing from the artistically ecstatic; but that is very seldom completely so in a story - but, it could be.
(See, I couldn't help myself from commentating on it anyhow. It is ingrained in me. :/)

Re: A few thoughts about my political comments on this forum.
Posted by: Sawfish (IP Logged)
Date: 3 June, 2019 09:38AM
Very kind of you, K, but I am among the least exalted here. There are superb scholars and aesthetes here, but I don't count myself among them.

I deeply sympathize with your motivation for expressing your thoughts. Please let me add a few comments, interspersed and interleaved, for focus...

Knygatin Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> I will try to curb my passionate outspokenness on
> philosophy/politics/psychology/sociology/culture/e
> thnology/spirituality. And will try to follow
> Boyd's preference, since, after all, he is the
> owner of this website. Even if I think discussion
> about Clark Ashton Smith may be difficult to keep
> from straying into branching subjects, considering
> how many things are connected and interrelate. (I
> used to visit a telescope forum, and it is
> somewhat easier to stick to such a clearly
> circumscribed topic. But with ART!? ...)

As regards Smith, I see him (and HPL, to, I suppose) as apolitical. They may be philosophical, but even in this they seem indirect.

But coming as we do from the current era, where everything is "in-your-face", and points seem to be given for public abrasiveness, it could be that they've hidden their message(s) well, and I'm missing them.

>
> And of course I would hate to see exalted Sawfish
> go,

...see above... :^)

> like so many others have gone. I humbly back
> down, since it is overall for the best.
> And I will try not to repeat that "I prefer poetry
> in prose, to verse". Some find this a particularly
> vicious thing to say, for example Absquatch
> compared it to twisting a knife in the back of the
> last remaining vestige of a dying art form, the
> first verbal art form to appear (personally I
> believe the art of mythic tales around the old
> camp fires appeared before the more stilted verse
> form). I certainly don't devalue verse poets, but
> I personally find verse more awkward to get
> through, and also less detailed on its canvas than
> prose (many argue that verse does not need to be
> as descriptively detailed, because it is more
> "exact", and that this exactness obliquely stirs
> up those untold images not directly painted;
> although from my reading experience I find it hard
> to agree. And also, a poet does not automatically
> become more exact, or a greater artist, only
> because he/she writes in verse form, as if that be
> a contracted guarantee by itself; although many in
> today's society seem to naively think so of
> themselves in a hurry of self aggrandizement.)

Quick observation here re poetry

I, too, prefer to read prose, but I'll now venture a comparison...

Poetry is ***less*** accessible to the ear/mind of he reader in the same sense that hard bop jazz, as by someone like John Coltrane, is less accessible than Bert Bacharach.

I think the world of both, but I can see why many, many more music lovers might well prefer Bacharach.

You make some very interesting and intriguing points about the relative precision of poetry and prose. I'm going to have to defer my thinking on that a bit (on a sort of road tour after having picked up my daughter after her college graduation--making a sort of sweep of the Rockies/Southwest right now), but my initial thought, subject to change, of course, is that at its finest, poetry taps an emotional, non-verbal response, in much the same way that instrumental music does. I think that pure prose (none of yer "prose-poem" shennanigans, here, bub!) has a really tough time doing this, it being more reliant on rational and *concrete* interpretation than poetry. You can get away with over-blown wording much more acceptably in poetry than in prose, which then bears the epithet "purple prose".

For examples of short evocative poetry, Shelley's "Ozymandias" is good. Similarly, and using CAS, I personally really liked the one about the submerged god who rose again from the sea bottom at the onset of a nuclear Armageddon--can't recall the name right now, and the hotel wifi is so slow that I don't want to look it up, but I'll find it later, if you want.

> I
> generally prefer the profusely nuanced subtleties
> in a painting or etching by Rembrandt, to the
> perfected economic brush strokes in a Chinese ink
> sheet. But some particular thoughts I agree may
> lend themselves better to verse; a specific
> insight or relative observation that is so central
> and important that one wants to savor it alone. I
> have fine permanent memories from verse poems, but
> since my sensibilities are mainly visual, I prefer
> the more painterly qualities of prose. Admitted, I
> am rarely if ever completely satisfied with
> stories, finding in them too much filler and too
> many stale bridges, and thinking that the prose
> could always potentially be so much more refined,
> to the point, existentially essential, and never
> in a single sentence relaxing from the
> artistically ecstatic; but that is very seldom
> completely so in a story - but, it could be.
> (See, I couldn't help myself from commentating on
> it anyhow. It is ingrained in me. :/)

Those are excellent observations, K! You're likening much of prose to an indifferently edited film. That's another thing I'll have to think through some more.

Sawfish
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
"Life is a tragedy to those who feel, a comedy to those who think."



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 3 Jun 19 | 09:42AM by Sawfish.

Re: A few thoughts about my political comments on this forum.
Posted by: Knygatin (IP Logged)
Date: 3 June, 2019 10:44AM
Thank you Sawfish. Good luck on your continued travel back to California, and drive carefully. Oh, what beautiful vistas must be there along the way!

Sawfish Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
...
> my initial
> thought, subject to change, of course, is that at
> its finest, poetry taps an emotional, non-verbal
> response, in much the same way that instrumental
> music does. I think that pure prose (none of yer
> "prose-poem" shennanigans, here, bub!) has a
> really tough time doing this, it being more
> reliant on rational and *concrete* interpretation
> than poetry. You can get away with over-blown
> wording much more acceptably in poetry than in
> prose, which then bears the epithet "purple
> prose".

I must let that simmer for a while, to consider whether prose not also can tap that kind of musical effect. Hmm ... Thinking right now of some of Arthur Machen's prose for example, or Walter de la Mare's, or (I'll be damned if I don't!) some of Lovecraft's most exalted passages. By the way, I like purple prose, like in much of Abraham Merritt's work. Purple prose may be a bit hysterical, but I still prefer overly emotional intensity to coolness. (But I don't think C. A. Smith's prose is purple, in spite of all the exotic words. He is a very precise artist!)

Re: A few thoughts about my political comments on this forum.
Posted by: Dale Nelson (IP Logged)
Date: 3 June, 2019 11:15AM
Perhaps a new thread would be a good place to discuss prose, prose poems, and poetry?

My 2c for now: I'm not sure how useful it is to generalize about "poetry," since almost anything one might say about "poetry" might be false of some poems, and not just poems that fail as poems because they are badly written.

I'll venture a cautious generalizations, though.

It seems to me that, for most of history, poetic composition has been addressed to the public or at least to an audience of multiple hearers and/or readers, while prose was often addressed to private persons. (I exclude from the latter statement non-literary prose such as inventories, legal documents such as contracts, public announcements from government, etc.) Poetry was intended, in some way or other, to be performed: to be recited (e.g. Beowulf), or enacted on stage (Shakespeare), or read at various other types of public occasions. The "public" might be a special one, e.g. epigrams circulated amongst a coterie. But the poet wrote for a public. Prose, however, was (with such important exceptions as I've mentioned, and others) more "intimate," e.g. letters, diaries.

People today are apt to criticize "poetry" for being "flowery." But they often misunderstand. My favorite example is Shakespeare's plays. Perhaps everyone here has been a bit bored by watching some TV or movie version of a Shakespeare play in which a character stands there, going on and on, with the other characters standing around listening with fixed expressions on their faces, etc. The camera zooms in on the actor's face so as to help to convey the deep feeling with which the character is speaking. But how tiresome, really, this is for the viewer.

The conventions of cinema and TV work against Shakespearean drama. Shakespeare was not writing for our modern media, with their conventions of close-ups of the faces of actors. He wrote for the Elizabethan-Jacobean stage, whose audiences could not see the actor's faces from close up. Those stages had fairly minimal props, and the performance was likely to be in the afternoon under the sky. This all meant, then, that the poetry had to do most of the work of evoking emotion, intention, atmospheric conditions, the appearance of a forest or of castle ramparts, and so on.

In other words, the "flowery" quality of much poetry is actually a reflection of the confidence of a poet and his or her audience in the ability of words to convey serious thought, historical gravity, the experience of the soul. But for us to enjoy it, we need to put aside our habits that have been shaped by TV and movies, and, before them by the way, by the approach of the naturalistic theater. (Shakespeare wrote for the "theater-in-the-round" such as the Globe. Someone like Ibsen wrote for the modern "picture-frame" theater in which there is an attempt at creating the illusion that we are watching "real life" going on, as it were looking into someone's house with the wall removed.)

Much poetry, then, may be hard for us until we stop wanting it to fit into the conventions we are used to.

If any of this is of interest, S. L. Bethell's Shakespeare and the Popular Dramatic Tradition may be warmly recommended.

There's one other element regarding poetry that I haven't mentioned yet, and that's the difficulty of much modern poetry. Perhaps sometimes in part in reaction to the emergence of popular media such as radio/wireless, much poetry did become, in the 20th century rather "private" and even hermetic. But the problem with Eliot's "Waste Land," for example, was not that of "floweriness." In fact, well before the advent of radio, but still in modern times, you had the development of the novel. Here was something written in prose that attracted a wide audience. It might be read privately, but often novels were read in the family group. Note that this factor can help us to understand what Dickens was up to. He often wrote "theatrically," and some readers (not this one) object to what they think they would find in his prose -- though often they haven't read very much of it.

Even the hearthside folktale can show a poetic quality, not just in the story, but in the repetitions that may sometimes put off people who see them on the printed page to be read privately. But originally these stories were likely to be "performed," and therefore it is not surprising that they show poetic qualities, such as repetitions -- "And he walked far, and farther than far, until he came to..."

Dale Nelson



Edited 3 time(s). Last edit at 3 Jun 19 | 11:37AM by Dale Nelson.

Re: A few thoughts about my political comments on this forum.
Posted by: Sawfish (IP Logged)
Date: 3 June, 2019 07:29PM
This will be a fun discussion, K!

I'm going to let it sit on the back burner for a while--at the Grand Canyon right now--but am a fan of de la Mar, and I want to leave you with this refinement of my statement on prose vs poetry: it is not an exclusionary case, where one cannot have a rationally communicative poem, nor an evocative piece of prose, but I am saying that should one wish to do pure evocative creation, it might well be done best as poetry, since, as I say, when you get to expressing something like Keats' "The Second Coming"

[en.wikipedia.org])

prose gets downright silly-sounding.

CAS does prose poems. I'll try to find one and we can see why it's referred to as a prose poem and not an other type of short prose.

But, as always, I could be wrong... ;^)

Sawfish
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
"Life is a tragedy to those who feel, a comedy to those who think."

Re: A few thoughts about my political comments on this forum.
Posted by: Sawfish (IP Logged)
Date: 3 June, 2019 07:39PM
Hi, Dale.

As regards modern long form narrative poetry that is aimed at Shakespeare's intended "popular market", have you ever read Vikram Seth's "The Golden Gate"?

[en.wikipedia.org])

This is a very playful and absorbing read. A lot of the subject seems dated (early expansion of the Silicon Valley tech world as the means of living, and the subsequent romantic foibles of the central characters.

Very playful! Like watching an Eric Roemer film.

Sawfish
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
"Life is a tragedy to those who feel, a comedy to those who think."

Re: A few thoughts about my political comments on this forum.
Posted by: Dale Nelson (IP Logged)
Date: 3 June, 2019 08:20PM
I've heard of Seth's book, never read it. In turn, I'll ask if you have heard of Martyn Skinner: The Return of Arthur, etc.?

[apilgriminnarnia.com]

As you can see from the article I've linked above, I quite liked that.

Skinner also wrote a mock-heroic tiny-fairies poem, Sir Elfadore and Mabyna, kind of a curiosity:

[apilgriminnarnia.com]

Re: A few thoughts about my political comments on this forum.
Posted by: Knygatin (IP Logged)
Date: 4 June, 2019 05:49AM
Dale Nelson Wrote:
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> Perhaps a new thread would be a good place to
> discuss prose, prose poems, and poetry?
>

I took the liberty of moving the entire discussion to a new thread.



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