Good night, Marcus. Blow out the light
and close your book. Where Ursa runs
the stars’ alarm now fills the night.
Heaven speaks to us in tongues,
a barbarian’s fear-stricken shriek
your Latin cannot understand.
Eternal terror, dark and bleak,
reigns over our frail mortal land. Read more …
William Butler Yeats, the Irish poet, playwright, and politician, was born on this day in 1865. One of the greatest literary figures of the 20th century, Yeats’ life and work straddle the great divide between Romanticism and Modernism. He received the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1923.
In life and in art, Yeats rejected modern rationalism, materialism, and egalitarianism. He saw them as coarsening and brutalizing.
Now that I’m dead, think only this of me:
At least one corner of an English field
will be forever England. There shall be
in that small plot a deeper plot concealed;
a plot which England fell for unaware: Read more …
One of the problems with getting interested in Jews is that they are, well, verbose. Digging into primary texts can become a sandtrap for spare time. Marcel Proust is notoriously dense, Ayn Rand is unending, Bill Kristol is incredibly repetitive, Philip Roth absurdly prolific, and so on. Really plumbing the Jewish mind through their own fiction is, quite frankly, a timesuck. Read more …