March 6, 2009

The Shepherd's Tree

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--Description: Clare J., 19th C, Nature,

Huge elm, with rifted trunk all notched and scarred,
Like to a warrior's destiny! I love
To stretch me often on thy shadowed sward,
And hear the laugh of summer leaves above;
Or on thy buttressed roots to sit, and lean
In careless attitude, and there reflect
On times and deeds and darings that have been -
Old castaways, now swallowed in neglect, -
While thou art towering in thy strength of heart,
Stirring the soul to vain imaginings
In which life's sordid being hath no part.
The wind of that eternal ditty sings,
Humming of future things, that burn the mind
To leave some fragment of itself behind.

John Clare

--Did You Know: Clare's descriptions of rural scenes show a keen and loving appreciation of nature.  His knowledge of the natural world went far beyond that of the major Romantic poets, and his love-songs and ballads charm by their genuine feeling.

--Word of the Day: prequel (PREE-kwuhl), noun
Meaning: A book, movie, drama, etc. set in a time preceding that of an existing work.
Example: "Author Budge Wilson admits writing Before Green Gables -- a prequel to Anne of Green Gables -- was a daunting task."

(Maria Kubacki; How Anne became Anne; Calgary Herald (Canada); Feb 10, 2008.)

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