Monday, February 8, 2016

Ezra Pound

Ezra Pound's work has both fans and critics.  I love it, and I am in deep study of his words about poetry at the moment.  There is something I love, too, about a poet who is clearly sane but found insane for speaking his beliefs during war.  (He was held for treason for his support of the Axis powers in Italy through radio addresses to America.  He didn't, according to most listeners, attack the American people, but did US leadership and the US bankers, and his main target was to speak about his racist ideology, born from his money fixation.  His anti Semitic beliefs, which he later renounced, were hand in hand with Nazism, less so Italian fascism.)  His poetry is steeped in culture, from across the globe, ignores most conventions, while knowing them all, and when he rhymed it was necessary for the piece, never anything more.  Critics have their own comments, and feel free to look them up, I particularly find his poems to be deep drinks from our global culture's deepest wells.

I've enclosed three Ezra Pound poems, I know not their copyright status, so, copyright is that of the respective owners, I assume the estate of Pound.  If this isn't allowed I will surely remove them, but since I checked them across the web, I am kind of thinking these are public domain works.  I could, of course, be wrong, I often am.


I can not bow to woo thee
With honey words and flower kisses
And the dew of sweet half-truths
Fallen on the grass of old quaint love-tales
Of broidered days foredone.
Nor in the murmurous twilight
May I sit below thee,
Worshiping in whispers
Tremulous as far-heard bells.
All these things have I known once
And passed
In that gay youth I had but yester-year.
And that is gone
As the shadow of wind.
Nay, I can not woo thee thus;
But as I am ever swept upward
To the centre of all truth
So must I bear thee with me
Rapt into this great involving flame,
Calling ever from the midst thereof,
"Follow! Follow!"
And in the glory of our meeting
Shall the power be reborn.
And together in the midst of this power
Must we, each outstriving each,
Cry eternally:
"I come, go thou yet further."
And again, "Follow,"
For we may not tarry.


Sing we for love and idleness,
Naught else is worth the having.
Though I have been in many a land,
There is naught else in living.
And I would rather have my sweet,
Though rose-leaves die of grieving,
Than do high deeds in Hungary
To pass all men's believing.


The lateral vibrations caress me,
They leap and caress me,
They work pathetically in my favour,
They seek my financial good.
She of the spear stands present.
The gods of the underworld attend me, O Annubis,
These are they of thy company.
With a pathetic solicitude they attend me;
Their realm is the lateral courses.

I am up to follow thee, Pallas.
Up and out of their caresses.
You were gone up as a rocket,
Bending your passages from right to left and from left to right
In the flat projection of a spiral.
The gods of drugged sleep attend me,
Wishing me well;
I am up to follow thee, Pallas.

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