January 19, 2012

Good-by

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--Description: 19th C, Emerson Ralph W., Death, Disillusion, Life--

Good-by, proud world, I'm going home,
Thou'rt not my friend, and I'm not thine;
Long through thy weary crowds I roam;
A river-ark on the ocean brine,
Long I've been tossed like the driven foam,
But now, proud world, I'm going home.

Good-by to Flattery's fawning face,
To Grandeur, with his wise grimace,
To upstart Wealth's averted eye,
To supple Office low and high,
To crowded halls, to court, and street,
To frozen hearts, and hasting feet,
To those who go, and those who come,
Good-by, proud world, I'm going home.

I'm going to my own hearth-stone
Bosomed in yon green hills, alone,
A secret nook in a pleasant land,
Whose groves the frolic fairies planned;
Where arches green the livelong day
Echo the blackbird's roundelay,
And vulgar feet have never trod
A spot that is sacred to thought and God.

Oh, when I am safe in my sylvan home,
I tread on the pride of Greece and Rome;
And when I am stretched beneath the pines
Where the evening star so holy shines,
I laugh at the lore and the pride of man,
At the sophist schools, and the learned clan;
For what are they all in their high conceit,
When man in the bush with God may meet.

Ralph Waldo Emerson


--Did You Know: (May 25, 1803 – April 27, 1882) Emerson was an American essayist, philosopher, and poet, best remembered for leading the Transcendentalist movement of the mid 19th century. His teachings directly influenced the growing New Thought movement of the mid 1800s. He was seen as a champion of individualism and a prescient critic of the countervailing pressures of society. Emerson gradually moved away from the religious and social beliefs of his contemporaries, formulating and expressing the philosophy of Transcendentalism in his 1836 essay, Nature. As a result of this ground breaking work he gave a speech entitled The American Scholar in 1837, which Oliver Wendell Holmes, Sr. considered to be America's "Intellectual Declaration of Independence". Considered one of the great orators of the time, Emerson's enthusiasm and respect for his audience enraptured crowds. His support for abolitionism late in life created controversy, and at times he was subject to abuse from crowds while speaking on the topic. When asked to sum up his work, he said his central doctrine was "the infinitude of the private man." Read more at: Ralph Waldo Emerson

--Word of the Day: bathos \BEY-thos\, noun:
1. Triteness or triviality in style.
2. A ludicrous descent from the exalted or lofty to the commonplace; anticlimax.
3. Insincere pathos; sentimentality; mawkishness.
Example:
After one character undergoes a particularly lightning-speed change in temperament, the director lays on a ludicrously coincidental plot twist with sentimental bathos that nearly swamps everything that has gone before.
-Ann Hornaday, "Movie review: In 'Mother and Child,' Bening and Epps give strong performances", Washington Post, May 2010

--Quote of the Day: "Woe to the man whose heart has not learned while young to hope, to love ... and to put its trust in life."
-Joseph Conrad

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