“Memories for sale! Get your reminiscing and musing here! Memories for sale—!”
“Childhood daydreams, first birthdays, and flights of fancy, yours for only three hundred—!”
“Piano lessons, cooking classes, foreign languages, we’ve got ‘em all! Get your practical skills now—!”
“Memories for sale! What’s past is present again! Memories for sale!” Continue reading
I didn’t look upward, but I was going that way. The air was damp. The cold, rough rungs were all I saw, all I dared see. I was afraid, too afraid to tremble—afraid that if I stopped to rest or to look for the walls of the shaft in the darkness, the rungs would crumble loose, their anchors give way.
I climbed for hours. Weary. I kept climbing. I didn’t know why. I couldn’t even remember where I’d started, when I’d started, any time before I’d started. Always climbing, and that was all. All that existed for me was one steel rung, then the next, and the next. Maybe I would see stars again, if I would just keep going. Continue reading
What do Rachel Platten, Marianas Trench, and avant-garde sculpture have in common? Postmodernist tendencies to self-referential exposition.
One of GoodTrueBeautiful’s authors exposes the dangers of postmodern art and its hidden moral claims in an article published recently by The Federalist:
[“Fight Song”] is [Rachel Platten’s] “take back my life song” and “prove I’m alright song,” but the song does not do these things. It only claims it is doing them. As much as I enjoy “Fight Song,” I have to recognize it for what it is: not a song, but the idea of a song.
Read more: Like All Postmodern Artists, Rachel Platten Makes A ‘Fight Song’ About Nothing
A word is a form blessed with the breath of life
Pregnant with meaning, the gifting-syllables
Shaping minds, scribing thoughts, and shifting hearts
In air, in ink, in ether
One word is not another, nor cannot be
How else to know the thing signified?
Then mind you the flavor, the texture, and taste
Words frame the deed, so speak in accord
Say sorrowful, not sad
Longing, not pining
Wistful, not down
Pensive, not quiet
A rose by any other name a rose may be
But Rose is the name we know from old
Storied, rich, bursting in glory
Choose not a lesser title for a greater flower
Say joyful, not happy
Charmed, not pleased
Enchanted, not interested
Delighted, not glad
What pedestrian measures should tread the tongue
When grander, lusher, still sweeter verba will serve?
Settle not for stale in all your speech
But have a care for plenty, euphony, and spirit in truth
She does not think today will be the day.
Her hair, unbraided yet, hangs in damp strands,
the wet, just-curling, limply-falling ropes
indicating that she has finally showered.
That’s more than she did yesterday, at least. Continue reading
Mist swirls about the headstones as midnight draws nigh
The cemetery is tranquil at this late hour,
and why not?
Its residents slumber undisturbed, and their kin lie elsewhere in the long night
Above the worn markers, only beech trees murmur amongst themselves, swaying in the nighttime air
Earth, moistened and gentled by an easterly breath, darkens with hidden dew
A sly fox treads lightly, ears pricked and straining to catch a hint of company Continue reading
All movie-watchers indulge in their own pet obsessions. Maybe you watch for plot twists; your sister watches for gorgeous soundtracks; your dad for the quotable one-liners; your mother for her Hollywood crushes; and your college roommate watches for goof-ups he can skewer later in ironic Youtube videos. As for me, I obsess over cinematic color theory. Continue reading
Beneath the crust of ages past and gone
And ‘yond the dust of empty chasmed halls
We find the trust of forebears dead at dawn
But hid in ink for better days and dolls.
In pages bound and pressed with gentle care
Preserving laughter, tears, and wintry scorn
For minds too young to know the evening fair
When peace and sanctity are mocked and torn.
That festival of flame so wild and free
Cut loose and lighting every silver hair
Till none are left who know save only me
A world so proud and built on old debris.
When once we breathed our rich and storied past
We also knew that naught would ever last.
After the Protestant Reformation shattered the Christian consensus and ended the serene confidence of the Renaissance, the dramatic Baroque style swept Europe. In the Netherlands, religious wars had ravaged the country, so art tended to avoid religious topics. As church patronage declined, however, the Netherlands’s booming economy allowed private citizens to commission art. Rembrandt’s Night Watch reflects the shift towards painting private, secular activity. Meanwhile, Spain remained resolutely Catholic. Spanish painter Velázquez painted genre scenes during the Baroque period, but his work often included subtle religious messages that supported Catholic doctrine. In Las Meninas, he is more concerned with his personal aim to establish himself as a member of the royal household rather than with conveying a religious message. Both group portrait paintings demonstrate the shift in art from religious to secular subjects. Continue reading
Rage! goddess, sing the rage of Peleus’ son Achilles,
Whose frown, and wrinkled lip, and sneer of cold command,
Does make cowards of us all, weak and weary,
Over many a quaint and curious volume of forgotten lore –
We bid the good people farewell for a while,
We sailed to many-tower’d Camelot,
Where up and down the people go,
Talking of Michael Angelo, –
Oh the places you’ll go!
And sometimes, through the mirror blue,
The knights come riding two and two –
riding – riding –
the knights come riding two and two,
Up to the old inn door –
Some late visitors entreating entrance
at my chamber door.
(I read, much of the night, and go South in the winter.)