July 6, 2012

To Jane

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--Description: 19th C, Shelley Percy B., Adoration, Love, Music, Night--

The keen stars were twinkling,
And the fair moon was rising among them,
Dear Jane.
The guitar was tinkling,
But the notes were not sweet till you sung them
Again.

As the moon's soft splendour
O'er the faint cold starlight of Heaven
Is thrown,
So your voice most tender
To the strings without soul had then given
Its own.

The stars will awaken,
Though the moon sleep a full hour later
To-night;
No leaf will be shaken
Whilst the dews of your melody scatter
Delight.

Though the sound overpowers,
Sing again, with your dear voice revealing
A tone
Of some world far from ours,
Where music and moonlight and feeling
Are one.

Percy Bysshe Shelley

--Did You Know: (4 August 1792 – 8 July 1822) Shelley was one of the major English Romantic poets and is critically regarded among the finest lyric poets in the English language. He is most famous for such classic anthology verse works as Ozymandias, Ode to the West Wind, To a Skylark, and The Masque of Anarchy, which are among the most popular and critically acclaimed poems in the English language. His major works, however, are long visionary poems which included Prometheus Unbound, Alastor, Adona├»s, The Revolt of Islam, and the unfinished The Triumph of Life. The Cenci (1819) and Prometheus Unbound (1820) were dramatic plays in five and four acts respectively. He also wrote the Gothic novels Zastrozzi (1810) and St. Irvyne (1811) and the short works The Assassins (1814) and The Coliseum (1817). Shelley's unconventional life and uncompromising idealism, combined with his strong disapproving voice, made him an authoritative and much-denigrated figure during his life and afterward. He became an idol of the next two or three or even four generations of poets, including the important Victorian and Pre-Raphaelite poets Robert Browning, Alfred Lord Tennyson, Dante Gabriel Rossetti, Algernon Charles Swinburne, as well as Lord Byron, Henry David Thoreau, and William Butler Yeats. He was admired by Karl Marx, Henry Stephens Salt, George Bernard Shaw, Bertrand Russell and Isadora Duncan. Henry David Thoreau's civil disobedience and Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi's passive resistance were influenced and inspired by Shelley's nonviolence in protest and political action. It is known that Gandhi would often quote Shelley's Mask of Anarchy. Shelley was famous for his association with John Keats and Lord Byron. The novelist Mary Shelley was his second wife. Read more at: Percy B. Shelley

--Poetry Terminology: Catharsis-
Much disputed term used by Aristotle in his Poetics where he suggests that tragedy should purge the emotions of pity and fear and, hence, lead to a catharsis.

--Word of the Day: vitiate \VISH-ee-ayt\, transitive verb:
1. To make faulty or imperfect; to render defective; to impair; as, "exaggeration vitiates a style of writing."
2. To corrupt morally; to debase.
3. To render ineffective; as, "fraud vitiates a contract."
Example:
MacNelly is one of the few contemporary political cartoonists who can use humor to accentuate, not vitiate, his points.
-Richard E. Marschall, "The Century In Political Cartoons", Columbia Journalism Review, May/June 1999

--Quote of the Day: Change always comes bearing gifts.
-Price Pritchett

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