japonisme: 10/12/08 - 10/19/08

17 October 2008

wondering about morality

ella wheeler wilcox was a spiritualist and popular poet.

i just don't know what i think of this. is it completely projection? does it make valid points? or is it merely condescension? is she a feminist ahead of her time, or is it xenophobic?

is it even possible at a century's distance to tell?

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13 October 2008

love the wild color

(for princess to welcome her back)

before japanese prints arrived in the west, this on the left may have been what passed as riotous color; imagine the response to this on the right. nice girls didn't, but raoul dufy did.


“I hate my verses, every line, every word.

Oh pale and brittle pencils ever to try
One grass-blade’s curve, or the throat of one bird
That clings to twig, ruffled against white sky.

Oh cracked and twilight mirrors ever to catch
One color, one glinting flash, of the splendor of things.

Unlucky hunter, Oh bullets of wax,
The lion beauty, the wild-swan wings, the storm of the wings.”

—This wild swan of a world is no hunter’s game.

Better bullets than yours would miss the white breast,
Better mirrors than yours would crack in the flame.

Does it matter whether you hate your...self? At least
Love your eyes that can see, your mind that can
Hear the music, the thunder of the wings. Love the wild swan.

Robinson Jeffers

Robinson Jeffers, “Love the Wild Swan” from The Collected Poetry of Robinson Jeffers, edited by Tim Hunt. Copyright (c) by the Jeffers Literary Properties.

Source: The Collected Poetry of Robinson Jeffers (Stanford University Press, 1988).

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