Monday, July 7, 2014

Ezra Pound - Poetry

I've heard of Ezra Pound before but this poem is new to me.  Off the top of my head, I can't put him with any particular poem so that's probably my fault.  The poem is called 'Ancient Music'.  The blurb before the poem says that 'This poem almost demands to be declaimed in the most passionate voice possible'.

Winter is icummen in,
Lhude sing Goddamm,
Raineth drop and staineth slop,
And how the wind doth ramm!
     Sing: Goddamm.
Skiddeth bus and sloppeth us,
An ague hath my ham.
Freezeth river, turneth liver,
     Damn you, sing: Goddamm.
Goddamm, Goddamm, 'tis why I am, Goddamm.
     So 'gainst the winter's balm.
Sing goddamm, damm, sing Goddamm,
Sing goddamm, sing goddamm, DAMM.

Boy, I could have used this poem during our previous, historically awful winter.  I'm making a mental note to remember this for next January or February.  I fully, fully, understand all of the 'Goddamm'.
Do I like the poem?  I'm not sure.  The creative spelling doesn't do much for me.  In poems like 'Jaberwocky', you have actual made up words that convey meaning.  This just seems like misspelling for the sake of misspelling.  I suppose there is some extra meaning that is conveyed there, but it gets more of an eye-roll from me.
The title is 'Ancient Music' and I want to think about that for a moment.  Does this mean that people have been cursing winter since ancient times?  Probably.  And calling this 'music' seems to give it a ritualistic nod.  I can dig that.
A useful poem.

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