A beautifully told story with colorful characters out of epic tradition, a tight and complex plot, and solid pacing. -- Booklist, starred review of On the Razor's Edge

Great writing, vivid scenarios, and thoughtful commentary ... the stories will linger after the last page is turned. -- Publisher's Weekly, on Captive Dreams

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

The Tears of October

TOF is pleased to announced that his archeological trollings in kept treasures have revealed that he too once committed poetry in his storied youth.  Is there no crime of which the college student is innocent? 

Yes.  For as feckless as he once was the TOF-that-was never inflicted these hapless poems on a wider audience.  TOF will drop them on the unsuspecting public one at a time, much like the Chinese water torture, until the victims cry out NO MORE!!!

TOF have not laid eyes on these gems for many decades.  Let's see how they run.  There are, apparently, two 'collections'.  The Tears of October and Mythologies.  Join us now as TOF returns to the errors of his youth. 

The first is from The Tears of October:

With Silent Song We Greet the Golden Morning

That rainbow glittering upon the sheets and floor
Has, unannounced, intruded through the inattentive glass,
Which, like a prism, has strained the sun
And thrown like discarded baubles
The colors at our feet. 
The eastern fire rests its chin upon the hills.
He bleaches out the silent ebon of the night
And warming wraps its golden arm
About our bodies lightly
To deck her neck with jewels.  
What does this poem prove?  That any sophomore can string together overwrought adjectives and awkward images and then, by breaking the sentences up into arbitrary lines, simulate the appearance of a poem. 

Those were the days of the unpoem, when meter and rhyme were anathema to the terminally would-be cool.  But TOF also detects a modest influence from a high school assignment: He was likely trying to imitate Gerard Manley Hopkins and his "sprung rhythm."  One recollects Sr. M. Therese, SSJ, and her conviction that TOF was destined for the Jesuits, and so assigned Hopkins as a study topic for his English paper. 

(TOF has examined his high school year book and is astonished to see how young all the nuns and priests were!  They seemed rather old at the time.)

1 comment:

  1. Ah, the SSJ. I was taught by them in my youth in our small school in Three Rivers, Michigan. They were Catholic back then. How the mighty have fallen.


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