Shakespeare

26 05 2015

It was my misfortune to have high school English teachers who deemed it unnecessary to study Shakespeare.

Recently I realised what a shame this was, when a friend read me this passage from Hamlet (Act 1, Scene 5):

I am thy father’s spirit,
Doom’d for a certain term to walk the night,
And for the day confin’d to fast in fires,
Till the foul crimes done in my days of nature
Are burnt and purg’d away. But that I am forbid
To tell the secrets of my prison house,
I could a tale unfold whose lightest word
Would harrow up thy soul, freeze thy young blood,
Make thy two eyes, like stars, start from their spheres,
Thy knotted and combined locks to part,
And each particular hair to stand on end
Like quills upon the fretful porcupine.
But this eternal blazon must not be
To ears of flesh and blood. List, list, O, list!
If thou didst ever thy dear father love-

Oh goodness me … “harrow up thy soul, freeze thy young blood
… how magnificent is that.





Poetry

26 04 2015

I found this recently and utterly fell in love.
I think I shall seek out more of this poet’s work.

You will hear thunder and remember me,
And think: she wanted storms. The rim
Of the sky will be the colour of hard crimson,
And your heart, as it was then, will be on fire.

Anna Akhmatova
(literary pseudonym of Anna Andreevna Gorenko)
(translated from original Russian)





Dante’s ‘Inferno’

4 09 2014

After many years of wanting to, I’ve started reading Dante’s ‘Comedia‘.
The first book being Inferno.
Some parts I’ve really enjoyed, others I’ve just waded through.

A few of my favourite parts from it:

  • At one point midway on our path in life,
    I came around and found myself searching
    through a dark wood, the right way blurred and lost
    [canto 1, 1-3]
    .
  • In autumn, leaves are lifted, one by one,
    away until the branch looks down and sees
    its tatters all arrayed upon the ground.
    [canto 3, 112-114]
    .
  • No fresh green leaves but dismal in colour,
    no boughs clean arc-ed but knotty and entwined,
    no apples were there but thorns, poison-pricked.
    [canto 13, 4-7]
    .
  • barked in her lunacy like any cur,
    the pain of it so wretched her mind askew
    [canton 30, 20-21]

All from ‘The Divine Comedy I: Inferno‘ translated by Robin Kirkpatrick.

 





Thoughts on creativity #3

14 04 2012

Well, just one thought this time actually [more in this and this post].

I’m now reading another book by Julia Cameron: ‘Walking in This World‘.

This was in chapter 1 and it resonated with me today:
We have attached so much rigmarole to the notion of being an artist that we fail to ask the simplest and most obvious question: Do I want to make this? If the answer is yes, then begin. Fire the arrow.

I like it.