GRE Literature Supplement 1

Terms in this set (119)

MATTHEW ARNOLD
* The most poignant image is the sea. The sea includes the visual imagery, used to express illusion, as well as the auditory imagery, used to express reality. A vivid description of the calm sea in the first eight lines allows a picture of the sea to unfold. However, the next six lines call upon auditory qualities, especially the words "Listen," "grating roar," and "eternal note of sadness." The distinction between the sight and sound imagery continues into the third stanza. Sophocles can hear the Aegean Sea, but cannot see it. He hears the purposelessness "of human misery," but cannot see it because of the "turbid ebb and flow" of the sea. The allusion of Sophocles and the past disappears abruptly, replaced by the auditory image, "But now I only hear/ Its melancholy, long, withdrawing roar/ Retreating to the breath/ Of the night-wind, down the vast edges drear/ And naked shingles of the world" (Lines 24-28). The image is intensely drawn by Arnold to vividly see the faith disappearing from the speaker's world. The image of darkness pervades the speaker's life just like the night wind pushes the clouds in to change a bright, calm sea into dark, "naked shingles."
* In the final stanza, the speaker makes his last attempt to hold on to illusion, yet is forced to face reality. John Ciardi affirms, "Love, on the other hand, tries to imagine a land of dreams and certitude" (196). Humanitarian sympathy becomes distinct in the spiritual image of love, even though the love which the speaker refers to is the unseen second person to which he communes.
* Oroonoko, an African prince and later a slave to the English who called him "Caesar"; Imoinda, his lover, also enslaved and sometimes called "Clemene"; Jamoan, an opposing warrior chief who, conquered by Oroonoko, becomes his vassal; the King of Coramantien, whom Oroonoko serves and later betrays, and who betrays him; the slave-running English ship captain; and various English colonists, especially the supposedly sympathetic plantation overseer named Trefrey, the colony's deputy governor named William Byam, the gallant Colonel Martin, and "Bannister, a wild Irishman
* Synopsis: The prince, who has gotten to know Behn while he is a slave in Guiana and she is a sympathetic listener, tells her his story. Successful in battle, he falls in love with a young woman who also catches the eye of the king. Having pursued their love surreptitiously, the couple is discovered and Imoinda is sold into slavery. Oroonoko, a slave-owner himself, despairs and nearly is defeated in battle by Jamoan's army, but he is roused to martial prowess by the pleas of his own troops. Lured upon an English ship by a captain with whom he previously had bought and sold slaves, Oroonoko and all his men are betrayed and taken as slaves to Guiana. There he is reunited with Imoinda, and his noble bearing attracts the praise of all who know him. However, circumstances force him to rebel against his masters and to lead an army of ex-slaves to seek their freedom. His capture, his murder of his own wife, and his torture and execution by the English slave-owners end Behn's narrative.
* English poet, noted for his mastery of dramatic monologue. Browning was long unsuccesful as a poet and financially depenent upon his family until he was well into adulthood. He became a great Victorian poet. In his best works people from the past reveal their thoughts and lives as if speaking or thinking aloud.
* A man can have but one life and one
death,
One heaven, one hell.

Fra Lippo Lippi (First and Last)

I am poor brother Lippo, by your leave!
You need not clap your torches to my face.
Zooks, what's to blame? you think you see a monk!
What, 'tis past midnight, and you go the rounds,
And here you catch me at an alley's end
Where sportive ladies leave their doors ajar? [...]

Your hand, sir, and good-bye: no lights, no lights!
The street's hushed, and I know my own way back,
Don't fear me! There's the grey beginning. Zooks!


Porphria's Lover (First and Last)

THE rain set early in to-night,

The sullen wind was soon awake,

It tore the elm-tops down for spite,

And did its worst to vex the lake:

I listened with heart fit to break.

When glided in Porphyria; straight

She shut the cold out and the storm [...]

Porphyria's love: she guessed not how

Her darling one wish would be heard.

And thus we sit together now,

And all night long we have not stirred,

And yet God has not said a word!




My Last Duchess (first and last)

That's my last Duchess painted on the wall,
Looking as if she were alive. I call
That piece a wonder, now: Fra Pandolf's hands
Worked busily a day, and there she stands.
Will `t please you sit and look at her? I said
"Fra Pandolf" by design, for never read
Strangers like you that pictured countenance,
[']Nay, we'll go
Together down, sir. Notice Neptune, though,
Taming a sea horse, thought a rarity,
Which Claus of Innshruck cast in bronze for me!
# In his Biographia Literaria, the English Romantic poet Samuel T. Coleridge propounded the organic principle as the constitutive definition of the poem: the whole is in every part, and every part can be found in the whole. The poem is that species of composition characterized, unlike works of science, by the immediate purpose of pleasure, and also by special metric and phonetic arrangements; it produces delight as a whole and this delight is compatible with the distinct gratification generated by each component part, which harmonizes with the other elements. T. S. Hulme, a 20th century English thinker, elucidated Coleridge's concept quite graphically in his Speculations: Essays on Humanism and the Philosophy of Art: unlike mechanical complexity, vital or organic is that kind of complexity "in which the parts cannot be said to be elements as each one is modified by the other's presence, and each one to a certain extent is the whole. The leg of a chair by itself is still a leg. My leg by itself wouldn't be."
# In Coleridge's view, expounded in Biographia Literaria, a great poem is the product of both the primary imagination. "The secondary imagination" dissolves, disperses, scatters, in order to re-create the material of the primary imagination; it represents creation as against vision.
# Another important principle which the New Critics borrowed from Coleridge's poetic is contextualism. The English poet viewed the poem as a product of the form-creating man; it had an independent existence, within the organic system of mutual relationships among the terms that made up the context of the poem. Thus the poem was regarded outside any and all non-poetic contexts. ***This piece is very important to the new critics.
* OVERVIEW: This poem, the first part of which was written in 1797, is also a fragment. Coleridge had wanted to include it in the 1800 Lyrical Ballads, but it was not yet finished; it was still incomplete when he finally published it in 1816. As it stands, the poem is the beginning of a medieval tale about a demon or witch.' It is writen in a strange meter of four stresses to a line, and a varying number of unstressed syllables. (Such a meter was used in medieval Anglo-Saxon poetry.)
* PART 1. At the poem's opening, it is midnight in Landdale Castle. Everyone is asleep except Christabel, the lovely daughter of Sir Leoline, the lord of the castle. Christabel is roaming in the woods, thinking about her lover, a knight to whom she is betrothed but who is now far away. Hearing a moaning coming from the other side of an oak tree, Christabel discovers a beautiful pale lady, barefoot and with jewels in her hair, who begs for help. Her name is Geraldine. She tells Christabel that she was abducted from her home by five warriors, who tied her to a white horse and brought her to this oak tree and left her, vowing to return. Geraldine begs Christabel for help. They walk back to the castle of Sir Leoline, at the entrance to which Geraldine falls down and must be lifted over the doorstep. This is the first of several hints that Geraldine is an evil spirit, because such beings cannot pass on their own through a doorway that has been blessed. Likewise, when Christabel utters a prayer of thanks to "the Virgin" that they are safe inside, Geraldine cannot join in the prayer. The old watchdog does not bark at this stranger; he only mutters in his sleep, and the ashes in the fireplace suddenly flame up as Geraldine passes by. In Christabel's chamber the two ladies undress for sleep. They lie down together, Christabel wrapped in the arms of Geraldine. As Christabel sleeps, the guardian spirit of her dead mother is driven away by Geraldine. Thus, by the end of the first part, the poet has led the reader to the conclusion that Geraldine is entrapping Christabel or trying to seduce her, to capture her soul. But he reminds us that "saints will aid if men will call."
* PART 2. It is morning. Geraldine and Christabel rise and dress, but Christabel retains an uneasy sense of the sinister influence of Geraldine. They visit Sir Leoline, to whom Geraldine introduces herself as the daughter of Lord Roland de Vaux, a man who had once been Sir Leoline's closest friend but had since become a bitter enemy. Captivated by the beauty of Geraldine, who embraces and kisses him, Sir Leoline tells his bard Bracey to travel to the castle of Lord Roland and invite him to come back to Langdale Castle. Meanwhile, Sir Leoline challenges the five scoundrels who abducted Geraldine to appear at a tournament one week later to defend, if they can, their honor. But, seeing Geraldine's influence over her father, Christabel asks that the guest be sent home at once. Sir Leoline, captivated by Geraldine and in a fury at this breech of hospitality, responds angrily to his daughter. Christabel cannot explain her fears because her tongue has been bewitched by Geraldine. The second part ends with the poet's meditation about the irrational anger of a parent toward an innocent child.
* Faulkner's fourth novel, his favorite, primarily, he says, because it is his "most splendid failure." Depicting the decline of the once-aristocratic Compson family, the novel is divided into four parts, each told by a different narrator.

* Benjy Compson: Idiot, youngest child. He narrates the first section, and he is the key to the novel's title, which alludes to Macbeth: "It is a tale / Told by an idiot, full of sound and fury, / Signifying nothing." He was castrated after allegedly sexually assaulting a young girl.

* Quentin: Quentin's section has flashbacks to fewer moments in the past and is less disjointed than Benjy's section, but because he is more intellectual and abstract, his section is much more fragmented. Nearly all of Quentin's flashbacks, except minor memories (such as breaking his leg) and those depicting conversation with his father, concern Caddy's sexuality and/or Quentin's reaction to it. Commits suicide.

* Compson, Candace (Caddy): Caddy is the veritable centerpiece of The Sound and the Fury and she played a different role in the eyes of her three brothers: a caring, maternal figure to Benjy, a virgin/whore who upset his sense of the propriety of Southern womanhood to Quentin, and an object of envy and detestation, who ruined his one chance at success, to Jason.' Does not have her own section.

* Compson, Jason: A confirmed sadist, Jason Compson reveled in his cruelty to others, including his mother, their black servant Dilsey. A childless bachelor, Jason thus represented the end of the Compson dynasty, since his older brother, Quentin, committed suicide in 1910 and his younger brother, Benjy, was castrated. In 1933, following the death of his mother, he committed Benjy to the state asylum and sold the Old Compson Place to a man wishing to open a boarding-house.
* Faulkner's first novel published after The Sound and the Fury, As I Lay Dying, like the novel before it, is told in stream-of-conscious fashion by fifteen different speakers in some 59 chapters. In its depiction of the Bundren family's quest to Jefferson to bury their dead matriarch, Addie, among her "people," against the threats of flood and fire, the novel explores the nature of grieving, community, and family.

* Cash Bundren: carpenter, broke his leg trying to get casket across the river, Anse (his dad) almost kills him by making a cast out of cement.

* Darl Bundren: most prolific voice in AILD. Is clairvoyant. Committed at the end for burning down a barn. Goes crazy and talks about himself in 3rd person.

* Dewey Dell Bundren: only daughter. Pregnant by Lafe and trying to get an abortion. Pissed at Darl because he figured out she was pregnant ' is the main one that tries to commit him.

* Jewel Bundren: (think Scarlet Letter), illegitimate child from Addie and Rev. Whitfield. She likes him best. He only has one monologue. Only Darl knows he's illegitimate.

* Quote: "If it had just been me when Cash fell off of that church and if it had just been me when pa aid sick with that load of wood fell on him, it would not be happening with every bastard in the county coming in to stare at her because if there is a God what the hell is He for. It would just be me and her on a high hill and me rolling the rocks down the hill at their faces, picking them up and throwing them down the hill faces and teeth and all by God until she was quiet...."

* Vardamann Bundren: youngest child. Catches a fish the day his mom dies and starts calling him mom the fish. (My mother is a fish) Thinks that Dr. Peabody killed his mom.
* Gray was the 5th and only surviving child of 12 children. Escaped an unhappy childhood (abusive father) when his uncle took him to Eton. Friends with Horace Walpole (wrote the first Gothic novel, The Castle of Otranto ) and Richard West. Let us not forgot the amazing poem, "Ode on the Death of a Favourite Cat, Drowned in a Tub of Gold Fishes". Alfred Lord Tennyson, a century later, spoke of Elegy's "divine truisms that make us weep." It went through four editions in two months, and eleven in a short time, besides being imitated, satirized, translated into many languages, and constantly pirated. (4line stanzas abab)

The curfew tolls the knell of parting day,
The lowing herd wind slowly o'er the lea,
The plowman homeward plods his weary way,
And leaves the world to darkness and to me.



Some village-Hampden, that with dauntless breast
The little tyrant of his fields withstood;
Some mute inglorious Milton here may rest,
Some Cromwell guiltless of his country's blood.


The Epitaph (to the poet Richard West)

Here rests his head upon the lap of Earth
A youth to Fortune and to Fame unknown.
Fair Science frown'd not on his humble birth,
And Melancholy mark'd him for her own.


Large was his bounty, and his soul sincere,
Heav'n did a recompense as largely send:
He gave to Mis'ry all he had, a tear,
He gain'd from Heav'n ('twas all he wish'd) a friend.


No farther seek his merits to disclose,
Or draw his frailties from their dread abode,
(There they alike in trembling hope repose)
The bosom of his Father and his God.
* The Sun Also Rises is set in the bars and cafes of Paris and the bull-rings of Pamplona during the Festival of San Fermin and the running of the bulls in the 1920s. The story is about a group of young Americans and English expatriats in Paris trying to enjoy their lives after the First World War. Alocohol plays an important part of the story, often making the characters reveal their true selves when they are drunk.
* Jacob Barnes (known as Jake) is the narrator of the story and the hero. He is an American from Kansas City now living in Paris and working as writer/newspaper reporter. Jake is impotent after being wounded in the war but he is deeply in love with a woman called Brett - her full name is Lady Brett Ashley, the title she inherited from her husband. Brett is seeking a divorce from her husband and it quickly becomes clear she is a very shallow person who loves to tease men and have affairs with them but she is incapable of having any real deep feeling for anyone.
* The story spans just a few weeks in the lives of Jake, Brett and a circle of friends. Hemingway makes much of the comaderie Jake has with men and the support he always offers Brett, despite her rejection of him because he is impotent. Jake sits back and watches Brett's relationships with men in a calm, controlled way but always painfully aware of his own physical inadequacies. Every time she breaks up with someone or is feeling depressed she turns to Jake.
* There is repetition in the story. The inevitability that Brett will have another affair, Jake is always there to comfort her. Michael is always there to put up with her. Each character goes away to heal their wounds. Just like the sun always rising every morning and setting every night. Jake has one friend, called Bill Gordon, he is the only male character not to fall in love with Brett but just enjoys the company of Jake in Spain, whilst they fish and watch the bull fights. A bullfighter, called Pedro Romero also falls in love with Brett. He is a young, confident and handsome Spaniard, admired by all for his expertise in the ring. He tries to change Brett, to make her into a more womanly woman. He wants her to grow her hair long, (she has short boyish hair). Pedro will lose respect in his country if he carries on his liaison with Brett. They part but Brett is distraught, perhaps for the first time. She runs to Jake for support. The story finishes with Brett telling Jake they should be together but they can't because he is impotent. Last lines: As they ride in a taxi through the Spanish capital, Brett laments that she and Jake could have had a wonderful time together. Jake responds, "Yes, isn't it pretty to think so?"
Told largely through dialogue. The story opens with a description of the setting, in rural Spain. We see a railway station between two lines of rails. It is hot, and there is no shade or trees. The two central characters, an American man and a girl (whose nationality is not disclosed), sit at a table waiting for a train to Madrid. The girl notes distant white hills against the warm, dry country, and comments that they look like White Elephants. The man's response and her reaction to it hint at tension between the pair.

Eventually, on the third drink, the man raises the subject of an operation he is encouraging the girl to have. It becomes apparent that the operation is an abortion. The man assures the woman that it is natural and that he will be there to support her if she goes ahead with it. Afterwards, he tells her, they will go on as before. The girl seems unsure about having the abortion. When the American says he's known lots of people who've done it, she says she has too, and adds with a hint of sarcasm that they were 'so happy' afterwards. When the man tells her she doesn't have to do it if she doesn't want to, she finally becomes serious, knowing the issue needs to be discussed. She questions whether things will be like they were before, and whether the man will still love her. He tries to reassure her, saying things will be better between them when he doesn't have to worry about their current situation. The girl seems persuaded, saying she will do it to make things 'fine' and because she doesn't care about herself.

Leaving the table the girl wanders to the edge of the station and looks at the scenery. In contrast to the scenery already noted, on the other side of the tracks she sees fields and trees, even a river. Her mood seems to change when she returns to the table. The landscape has, to her, mirrored their choice on one side barren aridity, on the other, fertile life. Their relationship has been changed by his attempts to manipulate her and they will never get it back. His actions have made their future barren.

When the man tries to placate her, sensing her mood shift, she tells him to stop talking. She indicates that it is too late for him to make things better. He notes the other people waiting reasonably for their train ' implying that he sees the girl as unreasonable. The story ends after he goes back, with the girl reassuring him that she feels 'fine'.
* In the tenth year of the war between the Greeks and the Trojans, Chryses, a priest of Apollo, comes to the Greek camp to ask for the return of his daughter Chryseis. She had been captured during a raid and given as a prize to Agamemnon. When Agamemnon refuses to return the girl, Chryses begs Apollo to punish the Greeks. The result is that a plague is sent upon them. A few days later, Achilles, the greatest of the Greek warriors, calls an assembly of the Greek forces to discuss how they can bring the plague to an end. The prophet Calchas explains why Apollo is angry with the Greeks and proposes that Agamemnon give up Chryseis. Agamemnon agrees to let the girl if Briseis, the prize of Achilles, is given to him. Achilles protests the loss of Briseis, but Agamemnon sends his men to take her away. Achilles is furious at this insult inflicted on him by Agamemnon and refuses to take any further part in the fighting. He also asks his mother, Thetis, to persuade Zeus to humble Agamemnon and the Greeks. Since Zeus favors Thetis, he agrees to honor her request.

On the next day, Agamemnon marshals the Greek forces, excluding Achilles and his men, and attacks the Trojans. The Greeks succeed in their efforts due to the brilliant fighting of Diomedes. On the second day of battle, the gods, following Zeus' orders, begin to help the Trojans, and the Greeks are driven back by the Trojans. At the end of the day, the Trojans do not even return to Troy for protection; instead, they are so confident of their abilities that they camp on the plain, ready for an onslaught on the Greek camp the next day.

Worrying about the Greek losses of the day, Agamemnon realizes how greatly his army depends upon the prowess of Achilles. As a result, he sends an embassy to the Greek hero to admit that he was wrong and offering to restore Briseis and give Achilles many other gifts if he would rejoin the fighting. The proud Achilles refuses the offer.

To restore the morale of the Greek forces, Odysseus and Diomedes make a successful night attack upon the camp of one of the Trojan allies; but when the fighting begins on the third day, the Trojans, with the help of the gods, again drive the Greeks into retreat. All the great Greek heroes, except Aias, are wounded in the fighting and are forced to leave the battle. As a result, the Trojans succeed in breaking through the Greek wall and are at the point of setting fire to their ships. Worried about the eminent defeat of the Greeks, Patroclos approaches his friend Achilles and
begs him to return to the fight. Achilles agrees to let his men help in the battle and lends Patroclos his own armor for the fight.

The reappearance of Achilles' forces temporarily turns the tide of the battle in favor of the Greeks, and they are able to force the Trojans back. Hector, however, is successful in killing Patroclos and stripping the armor of Achilles from his body. Suffering over the loss of Patroclos and the armor, the Greeks are easily pushed by the Trojans into full retreat once again. Achilles, learning of the events of the day, has had enough. The death of Patroclos motivates him to rejoin the fighting. When he returns to the Greek camp and shouts his battle cry, the Trojans tremble in fear and retreat. Zeus also makes the decision to let the gods help on both sides of the fighting.
* Johnson makes his Shakespearian criticism the foundation for general statements about man, nature, and literature. He is a true neo-classicist in his concern with the universal rather than with the particular; the highest praise he can bestow upon Shakespeare is to say that his plays are "just representations of general nature." The dramatist has relied upon his knowledge of human nature, rather than on bizarre effects, for his success. "The pleasures of sudden wonder are soon exhausted, and the mind can only repose on the stability of truth," Johnson concludes. It is for this reason that Shakespeare has outlived his century and reached the point at which his works can be judged solely on their own merits, without the interference of personal interests and prejudices that make criticism of one's contemporaries difficult. Keywords: universal, natural.

* One of Johnson's most stringent objections to Shakespeare's work arises from his strong conviction that literature is essentially didactic. He is disturbed by Shakespeare's disregard of "poetic justice." Johnson was convinced that the writer should show the virtuous rewarded and the evil punished, and he finds that Shakespeare, by ignoring this premis, "sacrifices virtue to convenience." The fact that in life evil often triumphs over good is no excuse in Johnson's eyes: "It is always a writer's duty to make the world better."' Shakespeare's careless plotting and his "disregard for distinctions of time and place" are also noted as flaws. Although Johnson dislikes Shakespeare's bawdry, he is willing to concede that that fault, at least, might have rested with the indelicacy of the ladies and gentlemen at the courts of Elizabeth I and James I, rather than with the playwright. These minor "errors" are far less irritating to Johnson than Shakespeare's use of puns: "A quibble was to him the fatal Cleopatra for which he lost the world, and was content to lose it."
* Adapted from Boccaccio's Decameron, Isabella is written in ottava rima (the stanza form that Byron brought back from Italy). Isabella and Lorenzo fall in love with each other, but he is in a society class beneath her, she is from a wealthy family and lives with her two brothers. For a while they are secretly in love, but do not speak of it. Then she falls ill and Lorenzo braves the risk of being shunned. But she is ill because she is in love with Lorenzo and is pining away. When he speaks of his love to her, her spirits are lifted and they begin to steal secret moments together. Her two brothers overhear and see them, and because he is of a lower class and unable to support her financially, they plot to murder him so that she has no chance of marrying him against their wishes.
* So they slay him in the forest and bury him. Then they return to tell Isabell they had sent him on business far away. She pines for Lorenzo and after months, starts to fade in beauty because of her loss of love and life without Lorenzo. One night Lorenzo appears to her in a vision and tells her of his death at the hands of her brothers and where he is buried. She takes an old nurse with her and together they unearth his grave. Isabella removes his head from his body and wraps it in a scarf, then plants it in a pot and covers it with basil.
* She cares for the basil with her tears and love, laments over the potted basil and grieves like a widow. The brothers are puzzled over her obsession for the basil and steal it away from her. Then they discover the secret beneath the basil, and destroy it. Isabella is destroyed as well, and cries for her sweet basil.

I.
Fair Isabel, poor simple Isabel!
Lorenzo, a young palmer in Love's eye!
They could not in the self-same mansion dwell
Without some stir of heart, some malady;
They could not sit at meals but feel how well
It soothed each to be the other by;
They could not, sure, beneath the same roof sleep
But to each other dream, and nightly weep.
* Form: Blank verse (for main plot), unrhymed iambic pentameter, set in 13 scenes with a prologue, three internal choruses, and an epilogue (the "A text" published in 1604) or five acts, composed of 4, 3, 3, 7, and 3 scenes, and all but the last scene begins with a "Chorus" delivering a transitional epilogue (the significantly longer "B text" published in 1616, and probably contributed to by later poets). Subplot passages involving Wagner, the Clown, the Horse Courser etc. usually are in prose and use colloquial diction to comic effect, though Faustus becomes involved with the subplot in the end.
* Characters: Major characters include Faustus, a German professor at Wittenberg who has turned magician, his servant Wagner, Mephistopholis the tempting demon and Lucifer, his lord, and a host of minor characters (three scholars who hope to learn from Faustus, a troop of "clowns" or country bumpkins whose quest for silly powers parodies Faustus' own desires, a set of high status characters including the pope and the emperor, and a set of allegorical characters including Faustus' good and bad angels, and the Seven Deadly Sins (a stock favorite of medieval moralities--Everyman transformed them into social types).
* Summary: The scholar seeks the ultimate wisdom, and with it, the ultimate power, but becomes obsessed with power to the neglect of his spirit. A demon, summoned, tempts him to surrender his soul for a brief period of exotic earthly powers. His servant and a gang of comic characters, in a subplot, mirror Faustus' search for earthly power but with markedly less success (and, hence, less risk to their souls!). Faustus trades his spirit for illusions like his vision of Helen, a "dumbshow" (silent play) or metadrama that occurs within his own life's play and mocks his ambitions. Unlike Goethe's Faust, Marlowe's Faustus remains confident in his own damnation until the end, and therefore he is correct, though also morally wrong. Marlowe's own view of Faustus' career remains much more complex, however, since he shares many qualities with the necromancer.
* Andrew Marvell was born in Winestead-in-Holderness in 1621. He was a friend of John Milton who recommended him for the post of Assistant Latin Secretary to the Council of State in 1653 - he finally got the job in 1657! While most of his poetry was not published during his lifetime, he did have a number of satires published, notably The Rehearsal Transposed which was published in two parts and was a rebuttal of the opinions of the Archdeacon of Canterbury. Samuel Parker. Thought of mostly as a metaphysical poet.

* To His Coy Mistress is a poem of two halves: the first splendidly flatters by setting out what would be proper lengths of time in which to adore her, if there was sufficient time. But having set her up, he follows on by telling her that there just isn't the time for all that "And your quaint honour turn to dust" and so they should "tear our pleasures with rough strife". Human nature hasn't changed too much over the last three hundred years but I bet few young ladies receive requests to dispense with their virginity in such a form today! The final couplet seems to confuse many. (Poem is 46 lines long in heroic couplets.)

Had we but world enough, and time, 1.
This coyness Lady were no crime.
We would sit down and think which way
To walk, and pass our long love's day.
Thou by the Indian Ganges' side
Shouldst rubies find; I by the tide
Of Humber would complain. I would
Love you ten years before the flood,
And you should, if you please, refuse
Till the conversion of the Jews


But at my back I always hear
Times winged chariot hurrying near;.

Let us roll all our strength and all
Our sweetness up into one ball,
And tear our pleasures with rough strife
Thorough the iron gates of life:
Thus, though we cannot make our sun
Stand still, yet we will make him run. 46
* One of the leaders of the Harlem Renaissance; known for his socialist politics. Different from the others because he adhered to old forms to write his protest poetry. The Lynching, Harlem Dancer, America, Africa and If We Must Die are all sonnets. Also wrote the book Home to Harlem.

Africa

THE sun sought thy dim bed and brought forth light,

The sciences were sucklings at thy breast;

When all the world was young in pregnant night

Thy slaves toiled at thy monumental best.

Thou ancient treasure-land, thou modern prize,

New peoples marvel at thy pyramids!

The years roll on, thy sphinx of riddle eyes

Watches the mad world with immobile lids.

The Hebrews humbled them at Pharaoh's name.

Cradle of Power! Yet all things were in vain!

Honor and Glory, Arrogance and Fame!

They went. The darkness swallowed thee again.

Thou art the harlot, now thy time is done,

Of all the mighty nations of the sun.


Harlem Dancer

APPLAUDING youths laughed with young prostitutes

And watched her perfect, half-clothed body sway;

Her voice was like the sound of blended flutes

Blown by black players upon a picnic day.

She sang and danced on gracefully and calm,

The light gauze hanging loose about her form;

To me she seemed a proudly-swaying palm

Grown lovelier for passing through a storm.

Upon her swarthy neck black shiny curls

Luxuriant fell; and tossing coins in praise,

The wine-flushed, bold-eyed boys, and even the girls,

Devoured her shape with eager, passionate gaze;

But looking at her falsely-smiling face,

I knew her self was not in that strange place.

If We Must Die

If we must die, let it not be like hogs
Hunted and penned in an inglorious spot,
While round us bark the mad and hungry dogs,
Making their mock at our accursed lot.
If we must die, O let us nobly die,
So that our precious blood may not be shed
In vain; then even the monsters we defy
Shall be constrained to honor us though dead!
O kinsmen we must meet the common foe!
Though far outnumbered let us show us brave,
And for their thousand blows deal one deathblow!
What though before us lies the open grave?
Like men we'll face the murderous, cowardly pack,
Pressed to the wall, dying, but fighting back!


America

Although she feeds me bread of bitterness,
And sinks into my throat her tiger's tooth,
Stealing my breath of life, I will confess
I love this cultured hell that tests my youth!
Her vigor flows like tides into my blood,
Giving me strength erect against her hate.
Her bigness sweeps my being like a flood.
Yet as a rebel fronts a king in state,
I stand within her walls with not a shred
Of terror, malice, not a word of jeer.
Darkly I gaze into the days ahead,
And see her might and granite wonders there,
Beneath the touch of Time's unerring hand,
Like priceless treasures sinking in the sand.
* Moby Dick is told by Ishmael, a young man who wants to go to sea as a sailor to seek adventure and excitement. He signs on the whaling ship, Pequod, along with his newfound Indian friend, Queequeg, whom he has met one night at the Spouter Inn in New Bedford. Queequeg is a native of the Fiji islands and an expert harpooner.

The captain of the ship, the dark brooding Ahab, is obsessed with hunting a giant white sperm whale, Moby Dick. Some years ago during an encounter at sea, Moby Dick had bitten off Ahab's leg. Thirsting for revenge, the one-legged Ahab decides to hunt the whale down. Thus, Ishmael, along with the ship's crew, is caught under the spell of Ahab's obsession for Moby Dick.

The Pequod leaves Nantucket on Christmas Day for the Pacific, and along its journey, the narrator introduces the reader to quite a few of the ship's members. Starbuck is the chief mate, Stubb, the second mate, and Flask, the third. There are also three harpooners: Queequeg, Tashtego, and Daggoo. The narrator not only describes the crew but also provides a lot of information about sperm whales and how they are spotted and hunted. One night Ahab gathers the crew around him and tells them of his quest: to catch the great white whale. The crew excitedly backs up his challenge to kill this deadly creature; the rest of the night is spent in revelry. Ishmael discovers that Moby Dick is a temperamental and wicked beast who is capable of sinking a whaling ship.

* While Moby Dick is being hunted, the crew catches several sperm whales. On the first sighting of a whale, Ishamael ends up falling into the ocean after his boat is capsized; the crew enjoys his misadventure. Another time Pip, the cabin boy, is thrown overboard and left for dead. Later he is rescued and declared mentally insane from the experience of being in the sea. Along the way, the Pequod meets several other ships; Ahab has only one question for each of them: "Hast seen the white whale, Moby Dick?" Some ships give Ahab news about the elusive white whale, but they report that all their attempts to catch him have ended in disaster. One of the captains has lost an arm to the whale. Ahab, excited by this news, goes back to the ship to make a new harpoon; in his excitement, he splinters his ivory leg.

The Pequod enters the Pacific Ocean much to the dismay of Starbuck and Stubb, who now realize the danger they are in and would prefer to abandon their mission. Eventually, the Pequod enters the Japanese sea, where the white whale is often sighted. Then a typhoon hits the ship, battering it with heavy seas. Ahab then spies the Rachel, whose crew explains that the white whale has destroyed a whole boat of crewmen, including the captain's son.

Soon after meeting the Rachel, the Pequod sights the white whale. Two attempts on two consecutive days go in vain as Moby Dick escapes. On the third day, Ahab drives a harpoon into Moby Dick's side. Furious, the wounded whale drives its massive head into the Pequod's side, smashing its bow. Ahab still refuses to give up the chase. He throws another harpoon at the whale, as his entire ship is sinking. As he throws the second harpoon, the rope gets entwined around Ahab's neck and drags him down into the water. The captain drowns, along with his crew. Only Ishmael survives, rescued by the Rachel. In this tragic story, the writer paints a brilliant portrait of life at sea and the American whaling industry during the 1800s.
# After entering the harbor at St. Maria, off the coast of Chile, Captain Amasa Delano soon sees another ship approaching as well; it is an old and majestic Spanish galleon. Delano then notices that the second ship has tattered sails and wanders here and there, nearly running aground, even though it is clearly manned. Delano has one of his small boats lowered and is taken over to the ship to offer his assistance. He is met by a skeletal Spanish captain (Benito Cereno), his attentive black servant (Babo), and a motley crew.
# When Captain Delano offers his aid, no one seems eager about his assistance; they offer only apathetic thanks. As Delano waits for his crew to return to his ship and get the necessary supplies to help the San Dominick, he gets the story of the strange ship's troubles and observes many odd proceedings.
# Benito Cereno begins to explain why the ship appears so tattered and broken. He tells Delano that the San Dominick tried to round Cape Horn and hit terrible weather. Then disease broke out on board and killed all but a few of the Spaniards and many of the Africans. Next the ship was largely stuck in calm water for two months. The ship has come to St. Maria to get water and food, for the few people on board are starving and dying of thirst. Most of Cereno's explanation is plausible to Captain Delano, except for the two months of calm. As a result, he feels sympathetic to their plight.
# As he spends the day on the ship, Captain Delano sees several oddities. He notes that Babo seems to be a devoted servant, never leaving Cereno's side; sometimes, however, he seems rather forward and acts rather inappropriately. Delano also notices that the Africans on board seem to be in charge of the deck, supposedly because most of the crew has died; these powerful black men strike him as a bit threatening, even though they work in orderly fashion. Additionally, Delano notices that many times during the course of the day Cereno is reduced to trembling and speechless gagging. Delano asks many questions, both orally and silently. When Delano's questions become especially direct, Babo leads Cereno away into the hold in order to shave him; he explains that they are on a strict schedule. Although he is shocked at the poor manner in which Cereno runs his ship, Delano cannot help having pity for Benito Cereno.
# By the time the crew of The Bachelor's Delight returns with water and supplies, Captain Delano has decided to wash his hands of the whole weird affair. After making sure that the San Dominick has the minimum necessary supplies, he takes his leave of Benito Cereno and climbs into the waiting boat with his crew. As they push off, Benito Cereno jumps into the boat with them. Then Babo jumps in after Cereno and attempts to stab him. Captain Delano quickly understands what has been happening on the San Dominick; he realizes that the African slaves have revolted and control the ship. When the small boat finally pulls away, Babo has been taken prisoner, and Cereno has become the grateful cargo. As they depart, a shroud falls from the bowsprit of the San Dominick; it has a human skeleton tied to it. Underneath are the scrawled words: Follow your leader.
* Pope's "Essay on Criticism" is a didactic poem in heroic couplets, begun, perhaps, as early as 1705, and published, anonymously, in 1711. It is his response to an ongoing critical debate, which centered on the question of whether poetry should be "natural" or written according to predetermined "artificial" rules inherited from the classical past.
* The poem commences with a discussion of the rules of taste which ought to govern poetry, and which enable a critic to make sound critical judgements. In it Pope comments, too, upon the authority which ought properly to be accorded to the classical authors who dealt with the subject; and concludes that the rules of the ancients are in fact identical with the rules of Nature: poetry and painting, that is, like religion and morality, actually reflect natural law.
* Pope then proceeds to discuss the laws by which a critic should be guided--insisting, as any good poet would, that critics exist to serve poets, not to attack them. He then provides, by way of example, instances of critics who had erred in one fashion or another. What, in Pope's opinion (here as elsewhere in his work) is the deadliest critical sin--a sin which is itself a reflection of a greater sin? All of his erring critics, each in their own way, betray the same fatal flaw.
* The final section of the poem discusses the moral qualities and virtues inherent in the ideal critic, who is also the ideal man--and who, Pope laments, no longer exists in the degenerate world of the early eighteenth century.
* The strongest defence of Pope came from Byron. If there were a general wreck of English literature, he wrote to his publisher, the English would rush to save Shakespeare and Milton, but the rest of the world would save Pope's work first, because Pope was 'the moral poet of all civilisation'. Byron was ready to defend Pope against all comers, and pretty much on any grounds -- as a poet of imagination and invention, as well as the poet of good sense -- but in particular he insisted that what others called Pope's artificiality was in truth his faultlessness'.
* Belinda arises to prepare for the day's social activities after sleeping late. Her guardian sylph, Ariel, warned her in a dream that some disaster will befall her, and promises to protect her to the best of his abilities. Belinda takes little notice of this oracle, however. After an elaborate ritual of dressing and primping, she travels on the Thames River to Hampton Court Palace, an ancient royal residence outside of London, where a group of wealthy young socialites are gathering for a party. Among them is the Baron, who has already made up his mind to steal a lock of Belinda's hair. He has risen early to perform and elaborate set of prayers and sacrifices to promote success in this enterprise. When the partygoers arrive at the palace, they enjoy a tense game of cards, which Pope describes in mock-heroic terms as a battle. This is followed by a round of coffee. Then the Baron takes up a pair of scissors and manages, on the third try, to cut off the coveted lock of Belinda's hair. Belinda is furious. Umbriel, a mischievous gnome, journeys down to the Cave of Spleen to procure a sack of sighs and a flask of tears which he then bestows on the heroine to fan the flames of her ire. Clarissa, who had aided the Baron in his crime, now urges Belinda to give up her anger in favor of good humor and good sense, moral qualities which will outlast her vanities. But Clarissa's moralizing falls on deaf ears, and Belinda initiates a scuffle between the ladies and the gentlemen, in which she attempts to recover the severed curl. The lock is lost in the confusion of this mock battle, however; the poet consoles the bereft Belinda with the suggestion that it has been taken up into the heavens and immortalized as a constellation.
Marcel Proust was born to bourgeois parents living in Paris. His father was a doctor and his mother came from a rich and cultured Jewish family. In 1912 Proust produced the first volume of his seven-part major work, A la Recherche du Temps Perdu (Remembrance of Things Past). The massive story of 3 000 pages occupied the last decade of his life. Remembrance of Things Past does not have a clear and continuous plot line. The narrator is Marcel. He is not Proust but resembles him in many ways. Marcel is initially ignorant - only slowly does he begin to grasp the essence of the hidden reality. At the end he is preparing to write a novel which is like the one just presented to the reader. Marcel's childhood memories start to flow when he tastes a madeleine cake dipped in linden tea such as he was given as a child. "And as soon as I had recognised the taste of the piece of madeleine soaked in her decoction of lime-blossom which my aunt used to give me (although I did not yet know and must long postpone the discovery of why this memory made me so happy) immediately the old grey house upon the street, where her room was, rose up like a stage set to attach itself to the little pavilion opening on to the garden which had been built out behind it for my parents (the isolated segment which until that moment had been all that I could see); and with the house the town, from morning to night and in all weathers, the Square where I used to be sent before lunch, the streets along which I used to run errands, the country roads we took when it was fine."
* During the 20s and 30s he was one of the most widely read poets in the nation. He is known for using simple language in his poems to celebrate the working people using the cadences of ordinary speech as his meter and rhyme. Best known for his poem about life in Chicago.

CHICAGO

HOG Butcher for the World,
Tool Maker, Stacker of Wheat,
Player with Railroads and the Nation's Freight Handler;
Stormy, husky, brawling,
City of the Big Shoulders:

They tell me you are wicked and I believe them, for I
have seen your painted women under the gas lamps
luring the farm boys.
And they tell me you are crooked and I answer: Yes, it
is true I have seen the gunman kill and go free to
kill again [...]


CHILD OF THE ROMANS

THE dago shovelman sits by the railroad track
Eating a noon meal of bread and bologna.
A train whirls by, and men and women at tables
Alive with red roses and yellow jonquils,
Eat steaks running with brown gravy,
Strawberries and cream, eclaires and coffee.
The dago shovelman finishes the dry bread and bologna,
Washes it down with a dipper from the water-boy,
And goes back to the second half of a ten-hour day's work
Keeping the road-bed so the roses and jonquils
Shake hardly at all in the cut glass vases
Standing slender on the tables in the dining cars.



Grass

PILE the bodies high at Austerlitz and Waterloo.

Shovel them under and let me work

I am the grass; I cover all.



And pile them high at Gettysburg

And pile them high at Ypres and Verdun.

Shovel them under and let me work.

Two years, ten years, and passengers ask the conductor:

What place is this?

Where are we now?


Cool Tombs

WHEN Abraham Lincoln was shoveled into the tombs, he forgot the copperheads and the assassin in the dust, in the cool tombs.









And Ulysses Grant lost all thought of con men and Wall Street, cash and collateral turned ashes ' in the dust, in the cool tombs.









Pocahontas' body, lovely as a poplar, sweet as a red haw in November or a pawpaw in May, did she wonder? does she remember? in the dust, in the cool tombs?
Prospero, rightful duke of Milan; a magician


Gonzalo, a good old counselor

Miranda, Prospero's daughter


Trinculo, Alonso's jester

Ferdinand, son of the King of Naples


Stephano, Alonso's drunken butler

Ariel, a bird-like spirit, servant of Prospero


Adrian & Francisco: attendants to Naples

Caliban, half man, half beast


Master of the Ship

Alonso, King of Naples


Boatswain

Sebastian, Alonso's traitorous brother


Mariners

Antonio, Prospero's usurping brother


Iris, Ceres, Juno: spirits of the pageant

Gonzalo, a good old counselor


Nymphs and reapers






* Act I: A tempest at sea batters the ship of the King of Naples, which is returning from the wedding of the King's daughter in Africa. On a nearby island, Prospero, a magician and a Duke who has lost his realm, controls the sea and brings to shore his usurping brother and other old enemies aboard the ship. Prospero and his daughter Miranda came to this isle after having been set adrift by his brother, Antonio. Only the assistance of a good old counselor, Gonzalo, allowed their survival. On the isle, Prospero commands a spirit of the winds, Ariel, who has been the agent of the tempest. He also rules over the island's only other occupant, the fishy Caliban, born of the witch Sycorax. Prospero brings all the voyagers safely ashore, but scatters them in groups about the island. Ferdinand, the young Prince of Naples, is led by Ariel's singing to Prospero's cave. Miranda, who has seen no man other than her father, falls instantly in love with him

* Act Two Stranded in another part of the island, Alonso, Sebastian, Antonio, and Gonzalo presume Ferdinand is dead. Alonso and Gonzalo fall asleep, but Sebastian and Antonio remain awake, plotting the death of the sleeping king and his counselor. Ariel wakes the intended victims just in time. In another area of the island, Trinculo, the jester, encounters Caliban. Stephano joins them and provides Caliban with liquor, so engaging his devotion

* Act Three Just as Sebastian and Antonio, upon arriving in this new land, plot to kill the King of Naples, so too Stephano and Trinculo engage Caliban in a plot to kill Prospero and seize the island. Meantime, Miranda exchanges vows with Ferdinand, whom Prospero has set upon a labor of log-bearing as a testament of his devotion. On the shore, Ariel mocks the royal party with a vanishing banquet and appears in the form of a Harpy to remind them of their crime against Prospero and his daughter

* Act Four At the cave, Prospero produces a pre-wedding masque for Ferdinand and Miranda, which is peopled with the spirits of goddesses and nymphs. Remembering the threat of Caliban's plot, the magician abruptly stops the masque and sends Ariel to punish the conspirators, whom Ariel pursues in the form of hunting dogs and drives through filthy ditches.

* Act Five The royal party is now brought, spell-bound by Ariel's music, to Prospero, who reveals himself to them, orders Antonio to restore his dukedom, and warns Sebastian against further plots. Alonso is allowed a view within the cave of Ferdinand and Miranda playing at chess. Ariel brings in the three drunken conspirators, and Caliban submits himself to his true master. The task of reconciling past wrong and reforming character completed, Prospero abjures his magic. All prepare to sail to Naples the next day.
* Macbeth begins as King Duncan and his son, Malcolm, both fresh from battle, encounter a bloody sergeant, who reports that Macbeth and Banquo have fought successfully and bravely for the king. Duncan punishes the Thane of Cawdor, who has turned traitor, and gives his title to Macbeth.
* Macbeth and Banquo, returning from battle, encounter three 'weird sisters' on the heath. The sisters prophesy that Macbeth will become both Thane of Cawdor and King and that Banquo will be the father of kings.As the weird sisters disappear, Ross and Angus arrive and greet Macbeth as the new Thane of Cawdor.
* Lady Macbeth receives a letter from her husband telling her of the prophecy. When he arrives at his castle, Dunsinane, she pushes him to bring the prophecy to pass by killing the king, who will stay in their home that evening. That evening, Macbeth and Banquo discuss the sisters' prophecies, then Macbeth imagines he sees daggers floating around him. After all are in bed, Macbeth kills the sleeping king and, horrified by what he has done, rejoins Lady Macbeth. She takes the daggers from him and smears the sleeping guards with blood to put the blame on them.
* As the Macbeths go to clean up, there is a knocking at the gate, which is answered by the drunken porters. Macduff and Ross arrive and discover the murdered king. Macbeth murders the sleeping guards. The princes, Malcolm and Donalbain, flee because they fear for their lives, and suspicion falls on them. The scene shifts to Macduff, the Thane of Fife, and his wife at home with their children, and we discover that Macbeth has been crowned king. Macbeth, fearing Banquo and his heirs, arranges to have Banquo and Fleance murdered, but Fleance escapes. That night at a state dinner, Macbeth is haunted by Banquo's ghost.
* Tormented, Macbeth seeks the sisters again and receives three new prophecies: that he should beware Macduff, that no one born of woman will harm him, and that he will never be vanquished until Birnam Wood comes to Dunsinane Hill. They also show him that Banquo's heirs will eventually rule Scotland. After they leave, Macbeth learns that Macduff has fled to Malcolm in England and he orders Macduff's family murdered. When Macduff learns of the deaths, his intense grief steels his resolve to march on Scotland with Malcolm, Donalbain, Ross, and Siward.
* Back at the castle, Lady Macbeth sleepwalks, distraught over all that has happened. A doctor can offer Macbeth no hope for her. Macbeth prepares for the coming battle, but he is confident in the protection offered him by his prophecies. Lady Macbeth kills herself. A messenger reports that Birnam Wood appears to be moving toward Dunsinane; in reality, Malcolm's soldiers are using tree branches to disguise their numbers. The battle begins and it seems as though Macbeth will win the day until, confronted with Macduff, he finds that Macduff was not born of woman, but from his mother's womb untimely ripped. Macbeth continues the battle, but is killed. Malcolm will become king.
* Arms and the Man is one of Shaw's earliest plays. It was first produced in London in 1894. Set in Bulgaria in 1885, a soldier barely escapes from battle during wartime and finds himself hiding in the daughter's room of the most prominent family in town. Her impending marriage plans are thrown into pandemonium. In a war between Bulgaria and Serbia, the Serbian soldiers are fleeing. A Serbian soldier surprises Raina, the heroine, by entering her bedroom for shelter. The Serbian officer is a Swiss mercenary soldier fighting on the Serbian side, his name is Captain Bluntschli. Raina Petkoff had been dreaming of her fianc' Sergius; about how valiantly he had led the Bulgarians to victory. Bluntschli is a soldier who prefers a supply of chocolates to bullets when he goes to the front. Chocolate Cream Soldier
* Raina Petkoff: Raina, the heroine of the play, is the only child of Major Petkoff and Catherine Petkoff. She is a "romantic" and had romantic notions of love and war.
Catherine Petkoff: Catherine Petkoff, Raina's mother, is a middle-aged affected woman, who wishes to pass off as a Viennese lady. She is "imperiously energetic" and good-looking. Major Petkoff, her husband, is a wealthy soldier.
Sergius: Sergius is handsome, as a romantic hero ought to be, has a good position in the army and supposed to be brave. He is supposed to be in love with Raina but flirts with Louka (the family servant).
Bluntschli: Bluntschli is a Swiss professional soldier fighting for the Serbs (against Bulgaria). He believes that it is
better to be armed with chocolates than with ammunition on the battlefield. In contrast to Sergius "he is of middling stature and undistinguished appearance". He is energetic and carries himself like a soldier.
* Shelley was moved to write this essay by an ironic statement made by Thomas Love Peacock in his volume The Four Ages of Poetry. Peacock stated that poetry was no longer useful because of the progress of technology and science. Shelley began his defense of poetry by distinguishing between reason and imagination, asserting that reason is a lesser faculty, having to do only with the analysis of things. He argued that imagination sees values and relationships and therefore is a creative faculty. Poetry, Shelley stated, is the expression of the imagination.
* Shelley traces the development of poetry from early "savage" times to mature civilizations. He believes that the function of poetry is to give order to the world and thereby to give pleasure. Thus, poets act as legislators, inventing the "art" of life, and also as prophets, because they focus on the eternal and infinite rather than just the local and temporary. By this broad definition even philosophers like Plato or Bacon were poets, and the great poets--Shakespeare, Dante, and Milton--were philosophers.
* The effect of poetry is, first of all, pleasure. But more than that, poetry makes people better by softening their natures, by enlarging their sympathies, by encouraging love, and by not being narrowly moralistic. Shelley states that the best poets do not try to teach and that society needs poets. He argues that humans have more practical and technical knowledge than they can possibly use, but that without the values embodied in poetry such knowledge is used to exploit people and cause them misery.
* Shelley further proposes that poetry does not come from the reason or the will but rather form the mind in moments of inspiration. He states that the imagination creates far more beautiful images than the composing poet can record. Thus a poet is a person of greater than ordinary sensibility. The poet is happy in the operations of his own mind because he "turns all things to loveliness."
* Finally, Shelley proposes in a second part (never written) to discuss contemporary poetic practice. He felt that he was living in an era of great poetry, at a time when enormous social and political upheaval was inspiring poetry. What he called "the spirit of the age" gave power to each individual poet. Shelley concluded with the most famous phrase of the essay: "Poets are the unacknowledged legislators of the World." (Also mentions Dante)
* Quote: We have more moral, political, and historical wisdom than we know how to reduce into practice; we have more scientific and economic knowledge than can be accommodated to the just distribution of the produce which it multiplies. The poetry in these systems of thought is concealed by the accumulation of facts and calculating processes. . . . We want the creative faculty to imagine that which we know; we want the generous impulse to act that which we imagine; we want the poetry of life; our calculations have outrun our conception. . . . The cultivation of those sciences which have enlarged the limits of the empire of man over the external world has for want of the poetical faculty proportionally circumscribed those of the internal world; and man, having enslaved the elements, remains himself a slave.
* Same person who wrote The School For Scandal.
* malapropism is derived from Mrs Malaprop, continually trying to impress with long words but using the wrong ones). It is, in form, a parody of a conventional romance, having two pairs of young lovers rather different from the norm.
* To take the less important pair first, Faulkland is an exaggeration of the sensitive, jealous lover. His girl, Julia, is fairly insipid, but this is necessary because the audience should instantly appreciate that his fears spring entirely from his own mind, and have no basis in her behaviour or inclinations. (An example of this: when Julia returns to her country home briefly and he remains in Bath, Faulkland is at first made unhappy by the thought that her life will be unhappy without him; but when, to reassure him, he is told that she continues to enjoy herself, he is tormented by the thought that this proves her indifferent to him.)
* In contrast to Faulkland and Julia, in the other pair of lovers it is not the man who is of interest but the woman. Jack Absolute is a typical young hero, rather in the mould of Fielding's Tom Jones. Lydia Languish, however, is not just the more interesting of the two of them, but the play's main character. (Having the major character in the play female is unusual for the period.) She is a hopeless romantic, addicted to the novels frequently condemned by contemporaries as responsible for the corruption of the morals of young ladies. (The absurdity of that idea is one of the targets Sheridan is attacking.)
* In her desperate search for romance, Lydia rejects the fate of marriage to a young nobleman which is the allotted fate for a young lady of fortune. She wants to elope with a penniless man, forcing Jack, who would be the sort of suitor of whom Lydia's family would approve, to disguise himself as a poor army officer. Enjoying her clandestine meetings with "Ensign Beverley", Lydia is enraged when she discovers that he is, in fact, a gentleman - and is only mollified when Jack persuades her that he is only pretending to be rich to trick her family so that he can spend more time with her. (This is of course agreeably dangerous and romantic.)
* Illiterate him, I say, quite from your memory. -- The Rivals. Act i. Sc. 2.
* 'T is safest in matrimony to begin with a little aversion. -- The Rivals. Act i. Sc.
* A progeny of learning. -- The Rivals. Act i. Sc. 2.
* A circulating library in a town is as an evergreen tree of diabolical knowledge. -- The Rivals. Act iii. Sc. 1.
* He is the very pine-apple of politeness! -- The Rivals. Act iii. Sc. 3.
* If I reprehend anything in this world, it is the use of my oracular tongue, and a nice derangement of epitaphs! -- The Rivals. Act iii. Sc. 3.
* Brothers Joseph and Charles Surface, and their cousin Maria, are orphans in the care of their uncle, Sir Peter Teazle. Both brothers wish to marry Maria. Lady Sneerwell, a malicious gossip and founder of The School for Scandal, wants to marry Charles and spreads false rumours about an affair between Charles and Lady Teazle in an attempt to make Maria reject Charles. Meanwhile, Joseph is attempting to seduce Lady Teazle. The brothers have a rich uncle, Sir Oliver, whom they have never met, and who visits them both incognito to test their characters before deciding which of them shall inherit his fortune. He finds that Joseph is a sanctimonious hypocrite, and that Charles is a generous libertine, and prefers Charles.
* In a farcical scene involving characters hiding behind furniture, Sir Peter learns of the plotting between Joseph and Lady Sneerwell, that the rumours about Charles and Lady Teazle are false, and that his wife is merely a victim of Joseph's flattery. He is therefore reconciled with his wife, and decides that Charles deserves to marry Maria. Lady Teazle, who has had a narrow escape from ruin, delivers an epilogue warning of the dangers of scandal-making.



* Here is the whole set! a character dead at every word. -- School for Scandal. Act ii. Sc. 2.
* I leave my character behind me. -- School for Scandal. Act ii. Sc. 2.
* Here's to the maiden of bashful fifteen;
Here's to the widow of fifty;
Here's to the flaunting, extravagant quean,
And here's to the housewife that's thrifty!
Let the toast pass;
Drink to the lass;
I 'll warrant she 'll prove an excuse for the glass. -- School for Scandal. Act iii. Sc. 3.
* SOME twelve years before the action of the play begins, Oedipus has been made King of Thebes in gratitude for his freeing the people from the pestilence brought on them by the presence of the riddling Sphinx. Since Laius, the former king, had shortly before been killed, Oedipus has been further honored by the hand of Queen Jocasta.
* Now another deadly pestilence is raging and the people have come to ask Oedipus to rescue them as before. The King has anticipated their need, however. Creon, Jocasta's brother, returns at the very moment from Apollo's oracle with the announcement that all will be well if Laius' murderer be found and cast from the city.
* In an effort to discover the murderer, Oedipus sends for the blind seer, Tiresias. Under protest the prophet names Oedipus himself as the criminal. Oedipus, outraged at the accusation, denounces it as a plot of Creon to gain the throne. Jocasta appears just in time to avoid a battle between the two men. Seers, she assures Oedipus, are not infallible. In proof, she cites the old prophecy that her son should kill his father and have children by his mother. She prevented its fulfillment, she confesses, by abandoning their infant son in the mountains. As for Laius, he had been killed by robbers years later at the junction of three roads on the route to Delphi.
* This information makes Oedipus uneasy. He recalls having killed a man answering Laius' description at this very spot when he was fleeing from his home in Corinth to avoid fulfillment of a similar prophecy. An aged messenger arrives from Corinth, at this point, to announce the death of King Polybus, supposed father of Oedipus, and the election of Oedipus as king in his stead. On account of the old prophecy Oedipus refuses to return to Corinth until his mother, too, is dead. To calm his fears the messenger assures him that he is not the blood son of Polybus and Merope, but a foundling from the house of Laius deserted in the mountains. This statement is confirmed by the old shepherd whom Jocasta had charged with the task of exposing her babe. Thus the ancient prophecy has been fulfilled in each dreadful detail. Jocasta in her horror hangs herself and Oedipus stabs out his eyes. Then he imposes on himself the penalty of exile which he had promised for the murderer of Laius.
# As stated by Thoreau, the theme of Walden is self-realization and self-fulfillment. Self-actualization is attained through human unity with Nature. Every aspect of Walden is focused on this idea. Thoreau moved to Emerson's household and became his handyman. He lived there from 1841 to 1843.
# Since Walden is the autobiographical, non-fiction recounting of Henry David Thoreau's stay at Walden Pond, every event in the text is essentially factual rather than imagined or created. The action is simply comprised of the events that happen to Thoreau during the two years that he spends in the woods. The narrator feels that society has strayed too far from the pursuit of excellence and purity. He claims that mankind has become too ambitious and greedy, enslaved by his own desire to own and possess. People have strayed away from simple lives offered by Nature's example. The narrator decides to move to the woods, where he builds a small cabin. He plants a garden and lives off of what he can produce or capture. He is isolated from other people for the most part, though he does have occasional visitors. He spends his time observing nature, wildlife, and the seasons and contemplating the nature of man and the universe. He also reflects on the differences and similarities between society and nature. At the end of two years, he returns to society. He writes down the factual story of his time in the woods, along with his interpretation of the events that occurred. He offers his work as encouragement and motivation in the hope that society will purify itself.
# "If a man does not keep pace with his companions, perhaps it is because he hears a different drummer. Let him step to the music which he hears, however measured or far away."
# The mass of men lead lives of quiet desperation."
* Thoreau begins his essay with the well-known motto - "That government is best which governs least." This carried to its natural conclusion is no government at all, which he says will happen when people are prepared. He objects particularly to a standing army and the current "Mexican war, the work of comparatively a few individuals using the standing government as their tool." Yet Thoreau realizes that the immediate need is not for no government but for better government. "Let every man make known what kind of government would command his respect, and that will be one step toward obtaining it." Majorities usually rule because they are the strongest physically, and their policies are based upon expediency. Thoreau asks whether it is not better to decide right and wrong by conscience which everyone has. "It is not desirable to cultivate a respect for the law, so much as for the right. The only obligation which I have a right to assume, is to do at any time what I think right." But a corporation has no conscience, although conscientious people may be a corporation with a conscience. Undue respect for law leads to soldiers marching to the wars against their wills, common sense, and consciences. Such men have let themselves become machines, serving the state with their bodies. Others, like lawyers and politicians, serve the state with their heads. A few, reformers and martyrs, serve the state with their consciences also, but they are usually treated as enemies.

Thoreau declares that he cannot associate with the American government, because it is a slave's government. He appeals to the right of revolution and the case of 1775. He laments, "A sixth of the population of a nation which has undertaken to be the refuge of liberty are slaves." It has become a military state, and honest men ought to rebel. He criticizes not only southern slave-owners but northern merchants and farmers who care more about commerce and agriculture than they do about humanity. Thousands are against slavery and the war, but they do nothing about it. Voting, he says, is like playing a game with right and wrong. Voting for the right does nothing for it if the majority passes the expedient instead. Thoreau accurately predicts that by the time the majority abolishes slavery there will be no slavery left to abolish. Although it is not necessarily a man's duty to work to eradicate a wrong, it is his duty not to support practically a wrong. We must not only refuse to fight in an unjust war, but also refuse to support the unjust government which conducts the war. Thoreau suggests that individuals refuse to pay their quota into the treasury.
# Bk I: After seven years of wandering, the Trojans are leaving Sicily for Italy. Juno, for a number of reasons, chief among them her continued resentment of all things Trojan, arouses a storm that drives them off course to Carthage. They are welcomed by Queen Dido, who settled Carthage after escaping her brother, who killed her husband. Venus makes Dido fall in love with Aeneas (as a way preemptively to thwart Juno). At a banquet, Dido asks to hear the stories of his wanderings.
# Bk II: An intense and tragic flashback to the Fall of Troy, including an account of the Trojan horse, the death of Priam, Aeneas\'92s loss of his wife Creusa while he escapes with his father, Anchises, and his son, Iulus (also called Ascanius).
# Bk III: Aeneas continues his narrative with a telling of his six years of wandering . His account includes the founding of several ill-fated settlements; an encounter with the Harpies (perhaps contrived by Virgil so that Aeneas can share an experience with Jason and the argonauts); a meeting Hector's widow Andromache (now married to Helenus, son of Priam); Apollo's prophetic advice-- including instructions to see the Sibyl at Cumae; landing on the island of the Cyclops and meeting Achaemenides (thus, Aeneas shares an experience with Odysseus); and finally to Sicily, where, we learn at the end of this book, Anchises dies.
# Bk IV: The love affair of Aeneas and Dido. Jupiter sends Mercury to order Aeneas to leave Carthage and fulfill his divine mission to found Rome. He immediately realizes he must sacrifice his personal happiness to his national and religious duty (he is "pious Aeneas"). He tries to explain to Dido, but she accepts no explanation and, as the Trojans depart, she kills herself in despair.
# Bk V: The Trojans return to Sicily and hold funeral games for Anchises. Juno causes Trojan women to set fire to the ships, but Jupiter puts the fire out. While on the final leg of the journey, the helmsman Palinurus is swept overboard by the god Sleep.
# Bk. VI: The Trojans land at Cumae in Italy (as instructed by Apollo), and Aeneas descends with the Sibyl to the underworld in order to consult the ghost of his father. He sees Dido while he is there. Future heroes of Roman history pass in a pageant before him, and he returns to the upper world resolute.
# Book VII: The Trojans reach the Tiber, and are welcomed by King Latinus, who recognizes Aeneas as the stranger referred to in an oracle as the one who would marry his daughter Lavinia. She is already betrothed to Turnus the Rutulian. Juno intervenes and ensures that Turnus will fight the Trojans. War breaks out.
# Book VIII: Aeneas visits Evander, an Arcadian living on the site of Rome (Pallanteum), to seek help. Evander's son Pallas heads the Arcadian contingent. Venus has a shield made for her son Aeneas, and on it are pictures from (future) Roman history. The description of these at the end of the book remind us why Aeneas has to fight Turnus, and what is at stake.
# Book IX: While Aeneas is away, Turnus achieves great deeds. In a much remarked upon passage, Nisus and Euryalus are killed. Turnus breaks into the Trojan camp but, because of pride and overconfidence, fails to open the gates so that his forces can join him. He escapes by jumping into the Tiber.
# Book X: Aeneas returns with Pallas and the war continues. Turnus seeks out Pallas and kills him, arrogantly boating over him and stripping off his sword-belt. Aeneas, in anger an guilt, rages over the battlefield, killing, among others, Lausus, whose father, Mezentius, in depair, recklessly engages Aeneas and is killed.
# Book XI: The funeral for Pallas. A truce for burial of the dead is made, but the fighting shortly resumes. The deeds and death of Camilla, an Italian warrior-maiden, are described.
# Book XII: A single combat is arranged between Aeneas and Turnus; but the truce is broken-- by Juturna, Turnus's sister, who is instigated by Juno-- and Aeneas is wounded. On Olympus, Juno accepts defeat on condition that the Italians shall be dominant in the Trojan-Italian stock from which the Romans will descend. Aeneas pursues Turnus (as Achilles pursued Hector in the Iliad), and wounds him. Turnus begs for mercy. Aeneas hesitates but, on seeing Pallas's sword-belt on Turnus's shoulder, kills him.
# Subsequent events (told by Jupiter in Book I, line 266ff.): Aeneas founds Lavinium; three years later, Ascanius succeeds him and rules for 30 years before moving the settlement to Alba Longa. The Alban kings rule for 300 years (Aeneid 6.760) until Romulus, grandson of Numitor, founds Rome.
* Known for his disagreements with other modernists.
* He wrote stories, plays and autobiographies as well as poems. His most memorable achievement is probably his five books of poetry about the humble and downtrodden Northern New Jersey city of Paterson, which few people would have seen as a fit subject for an epic poem. "No ideas but in things," he writes in the first page, and to hammer the point home he studs this unpretentious but dramatic work with ancient newspaper articles, anecdotes and letters from friends and admirers.
* One of the letter-writers was A.G., an enthusiastic young poet admirer from Paterson. This was the then-unknown Allen Ginsberg. Williams wrote the introduction for Ginsberg's first book of poetry, "Howl and Other Poems", in 1955. He died on March 4, 1963, the same year he was awarded the Pulitzer Prize for Literature. Look for few words per line.

This Is Just To Say

I have eaten
the plums
that were in
the icebox

and which
you were probably
saving
for breakfast

Forgive me
they were delicious
so sweet
and so cold


Lear

When the world takes over for us
and the storm in the trees
replaces our brittle consciences
(like ships, female to all seas)
when the few last yellow leaves
stand out like flags on tossed ships
at anchor--our minds are rested

Yesterday we sweated and dreamed
or sweated in our dreams walking
at a loss through the bulk of figures
that appeared solid, men or women,
but as we approached down the paved
corridor, melted--Was it I?--like
smoke from bonfires blowing away

Landscape with the Fall of Icarus

According to Brueghal
when Icarus fell
it was spring

a farmer was ploughing
his field
the whole pageantry

of the year was
awake tingling
near

the edge of the sea
concerned
with itself




The Red Wheelbarrow

so much depends
upon

a red wheel
barrow

glazed with rain
water

beside the white
chickens
;