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the mórríghan

22 January 2010

Idealized forms of anatomized man quake
With thund’rous shakings the whole benighted earth–
Dost thou propose, thou wastrel and rake
To despoil a faery-child of her mirth?

And art thou not also a pale and wretched knight
Caught by hot passion and left cold, loitering on hillsides chill?
Unaware, until the bitterness of the end, of thy sad plight
Beneath the wint’ry moon’s fickle wheel?

Proud knight! How didst thou dare?
With roving eyes to slow misfortunes, black,
Haunted with haints both plentious and fair–
Ever lusty love dawns her own sunless lack.

The unpigmented trough of Death discloses
What fire and fell deeds cannot:
A dreamworld glen of spring-fragrant roses
And a maiden in a faery-grot.

To trust to fancy? To embrace the moon,
More fickle with fiery passion, and persuade
Thyself of deception’s truth? Thy doom
Approaches under the starlit shade.

Ideals of man’s nature, perfected and made free
By the clamorous tools of man’s iniquity
Are a lie and a cheat, a cheat and disgrace
Known now, wretched knight, as thou gaze upon her face.

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2 Comments leave one →
  1. 22 January 2010 15:09

    Heh. I am left speechless.

    Well, I don’t have time to think up a proper thought in response to the poem either, just know I liked it and read it three times in succession just to sink it in a little more.

    I see you figured out the blog roll! Thanks!

    Check out the list to the side of my blog when you have the time. You may find a few more to add.

  2. 22 January 2010 15:43

    Thanks Karen! I think you saw an earlier version of this one.

    Astute readers will probably pick up the (very intentional) homage to John Keats’ “La Belle Dame Sans Merci” here; I’m playing with both versions of that poem, as well as my own ideas about Keats’ own sources. But I think that what makes it mine, in my own peculiar way, is the theme of distrust of the romantic (even though it is undeniably beautiful) and of the ideal (in the sense of a mental idol).

    I did figure out the blog roll. WordPress is new and different, but that’s good too. I’ll definitely check out the links when I get the time.

    Thanks again!

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