Tuesday, December 22, 2009



I have been rolling over a potential project, previously mentioned in this blog, in my mind lately.

Still not sure how I will execute it, or what the final form will be, but there are some lasting images and words that keep coming to the forefront... They keep haunting my mind's eye.

From "When Lilacs Last in the Door-yard Bloom’d":

O powerful, western, fallen star!
O shades of night! O moody, tearful night!
O great star disappear’d! O the black murk that hides the star!
O cruel hands that hold me powerless! O helpless soul of me!
O harsh surrounding cloud, that will not free my soul!

What grief, what turmoil these lines hold. You can almost lose your breath when you recite them.

The image that keeps mixing with this in my mind is of Whitman's tomb, and the crowd that gathered around it as his body made his way there:

As you probably already know, Whitman designed his own tomb. It was to be of nature, lacking pretense and ornament...

He sketched it out for its makers:

It was based on a William Blake (Another powerful poet!) engraving titled "Death’s Door." When I was in England last April I saw original Blake sketches at a museum. They were very beautiful. It's funny how the actual "thing" has an aura, a life, that the photo of it in a book does not have... Though, that's an entire discussion in itself...

You can see the resemblance, it's quite remarkable:

Now, I leave you reader, as I am left, nightly, with the above enduring words and images...


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