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/culture/ - arts & literature

"Man cannot remake himself without suffering, for he is both the marble and the sculptor." - Alexis Carrel
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I was wondering: does anyone here enjoy poetry / works of prose and short stories? Stuff that makes ya take on a different perspective or of the nature of being proseful, witty and full of alliteration. Naturally post your favorite short story or poem, as well as other tidbits you think others may find enjoyment from, perhaps even your own writings :)

My favorite poem to recite to myself when I feel the whole world's crashing down on my head is Invictus by William Ernest Henley:

Out of the night that covers me,
Black as the pit from pole to pole,
I thank whatever gods may be
For my unconquerable soul.

In the fell clutch of circumstance
I have not winced nor cried aloud.
Under the bludgeonings of chance
My head is bloody, but unbowed.

Beyond this place of wrath and tears
Looms but the Horror of the shade,
And yet the menace of the years
Finds and shall find me unafraid.

It matters not how strait the gate,
How charged with punishments the scroll,
I am the master of my fate,
I am the captain of my soul.


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That was indeed beautiful.

I recently read The Wanderer, an Anglo-Saxon poem about an embittered wanderer who used to be a warrior. He reflects on the
impermanence of the world, which is a very distinct emotion that has been encountered in cultures all over the world. In Japan
they call it mono no aware. In Hinduism, it is a tenet of their religion: your body and waking life is transient, but your soul
is permanent. Shiva is also destined to destroy this universe, making it non-permanent.

But anyway, I am getting sidetracked. Here is a bit of the poem, translated from the Anglo-Saxon, of course:

A wise hero must realise
How terrible it will be
When all the wealth of this world
lies waste
As now in various places
throughout this middle-earth
walls stand
blown by the wind
covered with frost
the buildings storm-swept.
The halls decay,
their lords lie
deprived of joy
the whole troop has fallen,
the proud ones, by the wall.
War took off some,
carried them on their way
one, the bird took off
across the deep sea,
one, the grey wolf
shared with death
one, the dreary-faced
man buried
in a grave.
And so He destroyed this city,
He, the Creator of Men,
until, deprived of the noise
of the citizens
the ancient work of giants
stood empty.


My favorite poem of all time will always and forever be "The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock" by T.S. Eliot.


read it here


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I love me some Vladimir Mayakovsky

But I
Have tamed
I have stomped
On the throat
Of my own song

A line is a fuse
that’s lit.
The line smolders,
the rhyme explodes—
and by a stanza
a city
is blown to bits

Favourite is this: http://www.unlikelystories.org/old/archives/cloudintrousers.html

Btw, newqueer here, how do you do italics and [u]underlines/u]?
excuse if test works


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I have a quote that always recurs in my mind about the human condition. It evokes that feeling of being utterly alone in a crowd:

“We live together, we act on, and react to, one another; but always and in all circumstances we are by ourselves. The martyrs go hand in hand into the arena; they are crucified alone. Embraced, the lovers desperately try to fuse their insulated ecstasies into a single self-transcendence; in vain. By its very nature every embodied spirit is doomed to suffer and enjoy in solitude. Sensations, feelings, insights, fancies—all these are private and, except through symbols and at second hand, incommunicable. We can pool information about experiences, but never the experiences themselves. From family to nation, every human group is a society of island universes.”

― Aldous Huxley, The Doors of Perception


>perhaps even your own writings :)
W-well ok then
This is about a beach that I have gone to many times, but especially in my lonely freshman year of uni

Waterfowl stalled by the squalls
Vagrant gulls and cormorants
Obsidian plateau
Sapphire plain
Waves climax and drop
At the mercy of the moon

Aggressive gusts slide off the sea
What has the ocean brought for me?
Lumps of weed
Clumps of kelp
Orphaned wood
Neglected shells

Rocks break into sand
Grain crafted into castle
Horizon tucks in the sun
In wintertime much faster
On cloudy days of black and grey
Far off lights flicker red and white
In fog’s domain horns blow all night
Tide gently swaying in and out


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