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quotes, words, magazines, and books on tape.  You don’t have to be reading a book to come in, sit down, and chat with us.

When Labor Day is over, I contemplate the seasons and the change from summer to fall.  In Michigan, we have four distinct seasons.  In literature we have seasons, also.  

There are several kinds of "seasons", in my thinking.  

There are the obvious seasons in books that use them for settings.  

Mark Helprin uses and celebrates winter in his beautiful Winter’s Tale.  It is also winter in Gutterson’s Snow Falling on Cedars. Winter adds to the problems of the characters in Cherryh’s Fortress of Ice.  

Winter is a big part of what we remember in Dr. Zhivago by Pasternak when the candle lit in the frosted window attracts Yuris’ attention and the passengers help to dig out the train stranded in drifts.  

Laura Ingalls Wilder’s book shows us a terrible and poignant winter on the plains in The Long Winter.  The Bronze Horseman by Simons has the ravages of a terrible winter in Russia in WW II and Maclean’s Ice Station Zebra is gripping in its setting of ice.

Bryson takes us on walk into summer in his A Walk in the Woods as he hikes the Appalachian Trail.

Pam from CA put up a video of a Louis Armstrong and Ella Fitzgerald duet of Summertime here that is superb:

It is spring in Alaska in the hilarious mystery Breaking Up by Dana Stabenow.

e e cummings celebrates the seasons in a poem Robyn quoted in Teacher’s Lounge: Learning to Think.  Read the whole wonderful poem here:

anyone lived in a pretty how town

anyone lived in a pretty how town
with up so floating many bells down)
spring summer autumn winter
he sang his didn't he danced his did

and his spring poem is such a delight!

in just-e e cummings

   in Just-
spring       when the world is mud-
luscious the little
lame balloonman
whistles       far       and wee
and eddieandbill come
running from marbles and
piracies and it's
when the world is puddle-wonderful
the queer
old balloonman whistles
far       and         wee
and bettyandisbel come dancing
from hop-scotch and jump-rope and
balloonMan       whistles

Emily Dickinson speaks:

Emily Dickinson (1830–86).  Complete Poems.  1924.

Part Five: The Single Hound

A LITTLE madness in the Spring
Is wholesome even for the King,
But God be with the Clown,
Who ponders this tremendous scene—
This whole experiment of green,        5
As if it were his own!

Part Two: Nature

A SOMETHING in a summer’s day,
As slow her flambeaux burn away,
Which solemnizes me.
A something in a summer’s noon,—
An azure depth, a wordless tune,        5
Transcending ecstasy.
And still within a summer’s night
A something so transporting bright,
I clap my hands to see;
Then veil my too inspecting face,        10
Lest such a subtle, shimmering grace
Flutter too far for me.
The wizard-fingers never rest,
The purple brook within the breast
Still chafes its narrow bed;        15
Still rears the East her amber flag,
Guides still the sun along the crag
His caravan of red,
Like flowers that heard the tale of dews,
But never deemed the dripping prize        20
Awaited their low brows;
Or bees, that thought the summer’s name
Some rumor of delirium
No summer could for them;
Or Arctic creature, dimly stirred        25
By tropic hint,—some travelled bird
Imported to the wood;
Or wind’s bright signal to the ear,
Making that homely and severe,
Contented, known, before        30
The heaven unexpected came,
To lives that thought their worshipping
A too presumptuous psalm.

Then, there are the seasons of the heart.  John Denver has a song about them here:

Seasons of the Heart (first stanza)

Of course we have our differences
You shouldnt be surprised
Its as natural as changes
In the seasons and the skies
Sometimes we grow together
Sometimes we drift apart
A wiser man than I might know
The seasons of the heart...

There are the seasons in a looser sense when certain books are published because they fit into the world where we are in our thinking or for when they will sell best.

For example, there are the big beach books for summer and the books about Iraq and about the administration because it is important to read them, now, and not twenty years from now when it is too late.  Al Gore’s Assault on Reason is at the head of my list.  Brandon Friedman has The War I Always Wanted, also.  

There are the metaphors of seasons.  The metaphor of the cycle of life and death as shown by the salmon returning to their home to spawn is an important part of Margaret Craven’s unforgettable story, I Heard the Owl Call My Name.  

In her book Digging to America, Anne Tyler explores the seasons of two adopted children’s lives and that of their adoptive families.  

Spring blooms in my mind in The Tempest as we hear Miranda reach out to her brave new world and there is the winter of King Lear’s old age in King Lear.  

Several of Shakespeare's sonnets speak of the seasons and of winter.  Find your favorites of those here.

and my favorite of those listed:

Shall I compare thee to a summer's day?
Thou art more lovely and more temperate:
Rough winds do shake the darling buds of May,
And summer's lease hath all too short a date;
Sometime too hot the eye of heaven shines,
And often is his gold complexion dimmed;
And every fair from fair sometime declines,
By chance or nature's changing course untrimmed:
But thy eternal summer shall not fade,
Nor lose possession of that fair thou ow'st,
Nor shall Death brag thou wand'rest in his shade,
When in eternal lines to time thou grow'st.
  So long as men can breathe or eyes can see,
  So long lives this, and this gives life to thee.

 Dylan Thomas celebrates our spring age of being green in Fern Hill.

Now as I was young and easy under the apple boughs
About the lilting house and happy as the grass was green,
The night above the dingle starry,
             Time let me hail and climb
Golden in the heydays of his eyes,
And honoured among wagons I was prince of the apple towns
And once below a time I lordly had the trees and leaves
             Trail with daisies and barley
Down the rivers of the windfall light.

Keats explains the metaphors:

The Human Seasons
John Keats

Four Seasons fill the measure of the year;
There are four seasons in the mind of man:
He has his lusty Spring, when fancy clear
Takes in all beauty with an easy span:
He has his Summer, when luxuriously
Spring's honied cud of youthful thought he loves
To ruminate, and by such dreaming high
Is nearest unto heaven: quiet coves
His soul has in its Autumn, when his wings
He furleth close; contented so to look
On mists in idleness--to let fair things
Pass by unheeded as a threshold brook.
He has his Winter too of pale misfeature,
Or else he would forego his mortal nature.

Shakespeare’s well known sonnet 73

That time of year thou mayst in me behold
When yellow leaves, or none, or few, do hang
Upon those boughs which shake against the cold,
Bare ruined choirs, where late the sweet birds sang.
In me thou see'st the twilight of such day
As after sunset fadeth in the west;
Which by and by black night doth take away,
Death's second self, that seals up all in rest.
In me thou see'st the glowing of such fire,
That on the ashes of his youth doth lie,
As the death-bed, whereon it must expire,
Consumed with that which it was nourish'd by.
This thou perceiv'st, which makes thy love more strong,
To love that well, which thou must leave ere long.

I could not write this diary without including the other poems of Keats about summer and autumn that have several layers to consider.  There is the lushness of description that lures us into his world and then the thought of what the season means in terms of life and death.

On The Grasshopper And Cricket
John Keats.

The poetry of earth is never dead:
When all the birds are faint with the hot sun,
And hide in cooling trees, a voice will run
From hedge to hedge about the new-mown mead;
That is the Grasshopper's--he takes the lead
In summer luxury,--he has never done
With his delights; for when tired out with fun
He rests at ease beneath some pleasant weed.
The poetry of earth is ceasing never:
On a lone winter evening, when the frost
Has wrought a silence, from the stove there shrills
The Cricket's song, in warmth increasing ever,
And seems to one in drowsiness half lost,
The Grasshopper's among some grassy hills.

Please read the whole Ode here:

Ode To A Nightingale
John Keats

My heart aches, and a drowsy numbness pains
My sense, as though of hemlock I had drunk,
Or emptied some dull opiate to the drains
One minute past, and Lethe-wards had sunk:
'Tis not through envy of thy happy lot,
But being too happy in thy happiness,--
That thou, light-winged Dryad of the trees,
In some melodious plot
Of beechen green, and shadows numberless,
Singest of summer in full-throated ease

I cannot see what flowers are at my feet,
Nor what soft incense hangs upon the boughs,
But, in embalmed darkness, guess each sweet
Wherewith the seasonable month endows
The grass, the thicket, and the fruit-tree wild;
White hawthorn, and the pastoral eglantine;
Fast-fading violets covered up in leaves;
And mid-May's eldest child,
The coming musk-rose, full of dewy wine,
The murmurous haunt of flies on summer eves...

Thou wast not born for death, immortal Bird!
No hungry generations tread thee down;
The voice I hear this passing night was heard
In ancient days by emperor and clown:
Perhaps the self-same song that found a path
Through the sad heart of Ruth, when, sick for home,
She stood in tears amid the alien corn;
The same that oft-times hath
Charmed magic casements, opening on the foam
Of perilous seas, in faery lands forlorn.

Forlorn! the very word is like a bell
To toll me back from thee to my sole self!
Adieu! the fancy cannot cheat so well
As she is famed to do, deceiving elf.
Adieu! adieu! thy plaintive anthem fades
Past the near meadows, over the still stream,
Up the hill-side; and now 'tis buried deep
In the next valley-glades:
Was it a vision, or a waking dream?
Fled is that music:--do I wake or sleep?

Please read the whole Ode to Autumn here:

Ode To Autumn
John Keats

Season of mists and mellow fruitfulness,
Close bosom-friend of the maturing sun;
Conspiring with him how to load and bless
With fruit the vines that round the thatch-eaves run;
To bend with apples the mossed cottage-trees,
And fill all fruit with ripeness to the core;
To swell the gourd, and plump the hazel shells
With a sweet kernel; to set budding more,
And still more, later flowers for the bees,
Until they think warm days will never cease,
For Summer has o'er-brimmed their clammy cell.

Who hath not seen thee oft amid thy store?
Sometimes whoever seeks abroad may find
Thee sitting careless on a granary floor,
Thy hair soft-lifted by the winnowing wind;
Or on a half-reaped furrow sound asleep,
Drowsed with the fume of poppies, while thy hook
Spares the next swath and all its twined flowers;
And sometimes like a gleaner thou dost keep
Steady thy laden head across a brook;
Or by a cider-press, with patient look,
Thou watchest the last oozings, hours by hours.

Where are the songs of Spring? Ay, where are they?
Think not of them, thou hast thy music too...

What is your favorite season?  What books or poems use the seasons to enrich us with descriptions or as metaphors of life?

What books did you take to the beach?

What books have you been saving for winter?

I have The Summer Garden by Paullina Simons set aside for winter reading.

LithiumCola has a wonderful diary:
The End of the End of the World

Literary Monthly has news:

plf515 has a wonderful book diary on Friday mornings early and all day.

pico has Literature for Kossacks on Tuesdays...not to be missed!
This week he discusses Emily Dickinson.
next week is Jorge Luis there!

Originally posted to cfk on Wed Sep 05, 2007 at 05:04 PM PDT.

Also republished by Readers and Book Lovers.


The seasons I love best for reading

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| 23 votes | Vote | Results

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Comment Preferences

  •  Welcome (16+ / 0-)

    I can just hear ek, Gussie or LithiumCola or plf say, "But what about seasonings?"  as in spicy, hot, or vinegar chips and what about cold cider or hot cider or grapes turning in the sun for wine?  yes, yes...all is good...speak up, I say.   Name those books!

    I am so glad to hear Riverbend is safe!  As I said in a comment, my heart rejoices that she is safe, but it hurts that she had to leave her home. Best wishes to her, her family, and the family left behind.  I read Baghdad Burning I and II.  I am hoping there will be a number III.  

    What books are sparking your interest or keeping you up late?

    I just finished What Is the What a fictional memoir by Dave Eggers about the Lost Boys of the Sudan. I highly recommend it.

    "Other cultures are not failed attempts at being you. They are unique manifestations of the human spirit." Wade Davis

    by cfk on Wed Sep 05, 2007 at 05:01:35 PM PDT

  •  I don't really associate seasons with reading (13+ / 0-)

    I read whatever, whenever, and all the time.

    I read in summer winter fall,
    springtime too, fine seasons all.
    I read in bed and in the bath
    If you take my books
    You'll feel my wrath.

    I read while walking down the street
    Although it makes me bump my feet.
    In subways, buses, boats and cars
    In hammocks in my friends' backyards.

  •  Summer is icumen in (10+ / 0-)

       Svmer is icumen in,
       Lhude sing cuccu!
       Groweþ sed and bloweþ med
       And springþ þe wde nu,
       Sing cuccu!

       Awe bleteþ after lomb,
       Lhouþ after calue cu.
       Bulluc sterteþ, bucke uerteþ,
       Murie sing cuccu!

       Cuccu, cuccu, wel singes þu, cuccu;
       Ne swik þu nauer nu.


       Sing cuccu nu. Sing cuccu.
       Sing cuccu. Sing cuccu nu!

    Modern English translation

       Summer has arrived,
       Loudly sing, Cuckoo!
       Seeds grow and meadows bloom
       And the forest springs anew,
       Sing, Cuckoo!

       The ewe bleats after the lamb,
       The cow lows after the calf.
       The bullock jumps, the billy-goat farts,
       Merrily sing, Cuckoo!

       Cuckoo, cuckoo, well you sing, cuckoo;
       Nor cease you ever now,
       Sing cuckoo now. Sing, Cuckoo.
       Sing Cuckoo. Sing cuckoo now!

  •  I think the season add a spice (7+ / 0-)

    to books...

    do you notice the seasons in the book?

    what about Steinbeck's East of Eden for seasons of a life?

    "Other cultures are not failed attempts at being you. They are unique manifestations of the human spirit." Wade Davis

    by cfk on Wed Sep 05, 2007 at 05:12:57 PM PDT

  •  Winter (7+ / 0-)

    Simon and Garfunkel's "I am a rock" starts

    A winter's day, in a deep and dark December

    and Robert Frost wrote his famous poem about the 'darkest evening of the year' - a snowy Dec 21.

    Whose woods these are I think I know.
    His house is in the village, though;
    He will not see me stopping here
    To watch his woods fill up with snow.

    My little horse must think it queer
    To stop without a farmhouse near
    Between the woods and frozen lake
    The darkest evening of the year.

    He gives his harness bells a shake
    To ask if there's some mistake.
    The only other sound's the sweep
    Of easy wind and downy flake.

    The woods are lovely, dark and deep,
    But I have promises to keep,
    And miles to go before I sleep,
    And miles to go before I sleep.

    •  good ones plf! (6+ / 0-)


      "Other cultures are not failed attempts at being you. They are unique manifestations of the human spirit." Wade Davis

      by cfk on Wed Sep 05, 2007 at 05:15:35 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  another S&G (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      RunawayRose, cfk, Loonesta, plf515

      (one of my favorites)

      April come she will
      When streams are ripe and swelled with rain
      May she will stay
      Resting in my arms again
      June she'll change her tune
      In restless walks she'll prowl the night
      July she will fly
      And give no warning to her flight
      August die she must
      The autumn winds blow chilly and cold
      September I remember
      A love once new has now grown old

      seasons & heart seasons in one!

      The hippies had it right all's about time the media, the politicians, the culture as a whole sent out a big, wet, hemp-covered apology.MMorford

      by RiaD on Wed Sep 05, 2007 at 06:31:58 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  great one!! (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        RunawayRose, RiaD

        The autumn season and the bearing of fruit and the harvest being gathered in and that great golden harvest moon!!  

        Ripeness and content and storing in food for the long nights of the turning world...sigh.


        "Other cultures are not failed attempts at being you. They are unique manifestations of the human spirit." Wade Davis

        by cfk on Wed Sep 05, 2007 at 06:42:16 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  A great song (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        cfk, RiaD

        but it seems to me to mischaracterize the months....
        Autumn winds do not blow in August - at least not in New York City, where I live and, more importantly, where the movie is set and where Simon and Garfunkel live.  

  •  ummm..."adds" (8+ / 0-)

    I am beginning to think that everyone is worn out from the holiday or thinks it is only Tuesday.  :)

    I imagine some are helping kids with schoolwork.

    "Other cultures are not failed attempts at being you. They are unique manifestations of the human spirit." Wade Davis

    by cfk on Wed Sep 05, 2007 at 05:15:01 PM PDT

  •  What is autumn like in the city? (9+ / 0-)

    for those who live in the city...

    "Other cultures are not failed attempts at being you. They are unique manifestations of the human spirit." Wade Davis

    by cfk on Wed Sep 05, 2007 at 05:16:29 PM PDT

  •  I agree (8+ / 0-)

    thanks for visiting with me!!!

    I think people walk a little faster and laugh a little more in autumn.

    "Other cultures are not failed attempts at being you. They are unique manifestations of the human spirit." Wade Davis

    by cfk on Wed Sep 05, 2007 at 05:24:31 PM PDT

  •  I'll go for June, today? (10+ / 0-)

    O my Luve's like a red, red rose,
    That's newly sprung in June:
    O my Luve's like the melodie,
    That's sweetly play'd in tune.

    As fair art thou, my bonie lass,
    So deep in luve am I;
    And I will luve thee still, my dear,
    Till a' the seas gang dry.

    Till a' the seas gang dry, my dear,
    And the rocks melt wi' the sun;
    And I will luve thee still, my dear,
    While the sands o' life shall run.

    And fare-thee-weel, my only Luve!
    And fare-thee-weel, a while!
    And I will come again, my Luve,
    Tho' 'twere ten thousand mile!

    By Robbie Burns

    "2009" The end of an error

    by sheddhead on Wed Sep 05, 2007 at 05:26:45 PM PDT

  •  This week I finished The Jungle (10+ / 0-)

    Wow, was that an exasperating, great book.  More went wrong in that than in Little Women, and for pure soap opera, I thought you couldn't top that!

    I just finished To Kill a Mockingbird, but I'm going to read it again right away.

    "2009" The end of an error

    by sheddhead on Wed Sep 05, 2007 at 05:28:25 PM PDT

  •  Damn I was looking up Nicholas Freeling (6+ / 0-)

    because I wanted to make sure I had a title right and saw that he'd died in 2003.  What a shame he was a very good writer.  I highlyu recommend the Van der Valk series and also the Henri Castang books.  They are very different and very humane and witty.  I wish I'd written him and told him how much I enjoyed his work.

    "I said, 'wait a minute, Chester, you know I'm a peaceful man.'" Robbie Robertson -8.13, -4.56

    by NearlyNormal on Wed Sep 05, 2007 at 05:33:14 PM PDT

  •  Where's Spink Bottle? (7+ / 0-)

    Well, this friend of yours has got here, and I must say that for a friend of yours he seems less sub-human than I had expected. A bit of a pop-eyed bleater, but on the whole clean and civil, and certainly most informative about newts. Am considering arranging series of lectures for him in neighbourhood. All the same I like your nerve using my house as a summer-hotel resort and shall have much to say to you on subject when you come down. Expect you thirtieth. Bring spats. Love. Travers.
    To this I riposted:

    On consulting engagement book find impossible come Brinkley Court. Deeply regret. Toodle-oo. Bertie.

    Hers in reply stuck a sinister note:

    Oh, so it's like that, is it? You and your engagement book, indeed. Deeply regret my foot. Let me tell you, my lad, that you will regret it a jolly sight more deeply if you don't come down. If you imagine for one moment that you are going to get out of distributing those prizes, you are very much mistaken. Deeply regret Brinkley Court hundred miles from London, as unable hit you with a brick. Love. Travers.

    "2009" The end of an error

    by sheddhead on Wed Sep 05, 2007 at 05:33:26 PM PDT

  •  I like this line (10+ / 0-)

    "November always seemed to be the Norway of the year." --Emily Dickinson

    IGTNT: Our war dead. Their stories. Read "I Got the News Today."

    by monkeybiz on Wed Sep 05, 2007 at 05:34:15 PM PDT

  •  An excuse to share from one of my favorite poets (9+ / 0-)

    The Garden

    My heart is a garden tired with autumn,
    Heaped with bending asters and dahlias heavy and dark,
    In the hazy sunshine, the garden remembers April,
    The drench of rains and a snow-drop quick and clear as a spark;

    Daffodils blowing in the cold wind of morning,
    And golden tulips, goblets holding the rain --
    The garden will be hushed with snow, forgotten soon, forgotten --
    After the stillness, will spring come again?

    -Sara Teasdale (1884 - 1933)

    There are, in every age, new errors to be rectified, and new prejudices to be opposed. -Samuel Johnson (1709-1784)

    by slksfca on Wed Sep 05, 2007 at 05:39:28 PM PDT

    •  Absolutely lovely...thanks for sharing!!! (7+ / 0-)

      I find much companionship in Sara's poems.  A friend.

      "Other cultures are not failed attempts at being you. They are unique manifestations of the human spirit." Wade Davis

      by cfk on Wed Sep 05, 2007 at 05:42:21 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  I've always felt kinship with her myself. (5+ / 0-)

        As autumn approaches I think of this poem, which evokes memories for me of my favorite season in NYC.


        THIS is the quiet hour; the theaters
          Have gathered in their crowds, and steadily
          The million lights blaze on for few to see,
        Robbing the sky of stars that should be hers.
        A woman waits with bag and shabby furs,
          A somber man drifts by, and only we
          Pass up the street unwearied, warm and free,
        For over us the olden magic stirs.
        Beneath the liquid splendor of the lights
          We live a little ere the charm is spent;
        This night is ours, of all the golden nights,
             The pavement an enchanted palace floor,
          And Youth the player on the viol, who sent
             A strain of music thru an open door.

        -Sara Teasdale (1884 - 1933)

        There are, in every age, new errors to be rectified, and new prejudices to be opposed. -Samuel Johnson (1709-1784)

        by slksfca on Wed Sep 05, 2007 at 05:54:02 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  I think the lovliest time of the year... (7+ / 0-) the spring, don't you...oh wait, Tom Leher doesn't count...

    Well, October Light springs to mind as my favorite seasonal novel title.  Kipling's description of the year's progress in The Man Who Would Be King, which a diary the other day sent me scuttling to re-read.  

    And Mary Oliver...

    Fall Song

    Another year gone, leaving everywhere
    its rich spiced residues: vines, leaves,

    the uneaten fruits crumbling damply
    in the shadows, unmattering back

    from the particular island
    of this summer, this NOW, that now is nowhere

    except underfoot, moldering
    in that black subterranean castle

    of unobservable mysteries - - -roots and sealed seeds
    and the wanderings of water. This

    I try to remember when time's measure
    painfully chafes, for instance when autumn

    flares out at the last, boisterous and like us longing
    to stay - - - how everything lives, shifting

    from one bright vision to another, forever
    in these momentary pastures.

    -- Mary Oliver

  •  Most Booful Diary Ever (9+ / 0-)

    Truly, you are a "man(?) for all seasons."

    Seasons:  I love 'em all, except hurricane season, which is winding down on our second uneventful year in a row.  (Tempting fate, I know, as the season doesn't end for another month.)

    A Year in Province is a book I'd like to re-read while spending a year in Province.  I did get to read Under the Tuscan Sun curled up in the bed of my stony Tuscan albergo.

    There are those who dislike or fear spring.

    April is the cruellest month, breeding
    Lilacs out of the dead land, mixing
    Memory and desire, stirring
    Dull roots with spring rain.  T. S. Eliot

    And for those among us who hate winter, Shakespeare offers us a hero who can change it into summer, "Now is the winter of our discontent Made glorious summer by this sun of York;"

    As for me, as long as I can live where the trade winds blow, I know no real seasons but wet and dry. And I like them both equally (with the exception noted above).

    They burn our children in their wars and grow rich beyond the dreams of avarice.

    by Limelite on Wed Sep 05, 2007 at 05:42:24 PM PDT

    •  may there be no more major storms (7+ / 0-)

      we have had more than enough.  I share your hope.

      April can be cruel in MI, too.  One year it snowed 10+ inches in the Thumb of MI on April 26 after tulips and daffodils had bloomed and buds were on the trees...yes, cruel to those of us who tire of the sterile white and gray.

      I took a picture of that day in my backyard and our burgundy truck buried under the snow was the only spot of color...a friend in CA asked me if I ahd used colored film...sigh.

      But then, it was so beautiful that day and we knew it couldn't stay...a paradox.

      oh, and we should be able to have Women for All Seasons..yes, indeed...and Renaissance Women, too...being a lady, I vote for it.

      "Other cultures are not failed attempts at being you. They are unique manifestations of the human spirit." Wade Davis

      by cfk on Wed Sep 05, 2007 at 05:50:43 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  I am reading "Snow" (5+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    RunawayRose, cfk, RiaD, VoicelessInDC, Loonesta

    by Orphan Pamuk for my book group which meets next week.  I have been reading it for three days and am only on page 100.  Everytime I try to read it, I tend to doze off.  It just doesn't "grab" me.  

    One woman in the book group has already read it and said that she loved it!  I think it will be all that I can do to even finish it.  I only have 370 more pages to go.  :-(

    •  oh, dear (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      RunawayRose, RiaD

      maybe it will pick up.

      I have bookmarks in several good books that do that to me.  Good luck!

      It is nice that you have a good book group.  

      "Other cultures are not failed attempts at being you. They are unique manifestations of the human spirit." Wade Davis

      by cfk on Wed Sep 05, 2007 at 06:25:26 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Prodigal Summer (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    RunawayRose, cfk

    by Barbara Kingsolver. A lovely summer book.

  •  Hi, cfk! (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Ahianne, cfk, Loonesta

    There's almost no time when I won't read, the main requirements being something to read and light to see it by!

    Bike book is currently "Pyramid Power" by Eric Flint and Dave Freer; a somewhat comic story set in the run-up to Ragnarok (and also in Chicago and Washington D.C.).  On the Norse myth side of things, winter rules.

    Bed book is seasonal too, "The Mating Season" by P.G. Wodehouse.  A summer trip to a country mansion, where several romances are threatened but ultimately saved. Jeeves conquers all!

    Sig: A rose by any other name would probably be deadly thorn-bearing attack vegetation.

    by RunawayRose on Wed Sep 05, 2007 at 08:49:12 PM PDT

  •  Careful, cfk! (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    cfk, Loonesta

    The Cummings poem is deceptive!  Its actual title is Chansons innocents I, but the title is ironic.

    Here's the deceptive little worm: notice that the balloonman is "lame", "old", and "goat-footed".  Sound familiar?...  

    Suddenly that poem, for all its beauty (and I agree that nothing says Spring like "puddle-wonderful"!) becomes sinister and dark.


    I think my favorite piece of literature for evoking the seasons is the awesome Eugene Onegin, a novel in verse by Alexander Pushkin.  Pushkin's poetry is jaw-droppingly beautiful and the novel is particularly evocative of Pushkin's favorite season, winter:


    Winter!... The countryman, enchanted,
        breaks a new passage with his sleigh;
        his nag has smelt the snow, and planted
        a shambling hoof along the way;
        a saucy kibítka is slicing
        its furrow through the powdery icing;
        the driver sits and cuts a dash
        in sheepskin coat with scarlet sash.
        Here comes the yard-boy, who has chosen
        his pup to grace the sledge, while he
        becomes a horse for all to see;
        the rogue has got a finger frozen:
        it hurts, he laughs, and all in vain
        his mother taps the window-pane.

    (V. 2)

    Saint, n. A dead sinner revised and edited. - Ambrose Bierce

    by pico on Wed Sep 05, 2007 at 09:25:46 PM PDT

    •  Sorry, I guess I was a little oblique (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      cfk, Loonesta

      with that Cummings reference.  Different people interpret it different ways, but the combination of 'lame' with 'goat-footed' is probably a reference to the Devil.  Some Christian folk and apocryphal tradition has him crippled in the left leg (the one he landed on when he fell from heaven), and he's often depicted with hooves.  You occasionally see the balloonman read as Pan, which is also possible, but I don't think Pan was ever described as 'lame'.  

      Either way, he represents a symbol of temptation and corruption going after the sweetly innocent children.

      and wee!

      I love that poem!

      For the record, "anyone lived in a pretty how town" is in my top two or three favorite poems ever, in any language.  It's a gorgeous piece of work.

      and only the snow can begin to explain
      how children are apt to forget to remember
      with up so floating many bells down

      I know it by heart.

      Saint, n. A dead sinner revised and edited. - Ambrose Bierce

      by pico on Wed Sep 05, 2007 at 09:35:00 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  ah...thanks for explaining (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        I would have thought of Pan, but to be honest I never saw the dark side until you mentioned it.  I am sure you are right...

        and his words dance through my head, too, so often.

        I love the Onegin quote!!!  Thanks for coming by.

         Are you thinking to do some Pushkin one of these days?

        "Other cultures are not failed attempts at being you. They are unique manifestations of the human spirit." Wade Davis

        by cfk on Wed Sep 05, 2007 at 09:47:31 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Most definitely, (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:

          if only to stick it to Turkana, who thinks Pushkin is second-rate Byron.  I'll even dedicate it to him!

          Saint, n. A dead sinner revised and edited. - Ambrose Bierce

          by pico on Wed Sep 05, 2007 at 10:01:50 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  lololol (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:

            well, it would be better to dedicate it to someone who loves him, too, imo...not to be pleading my own case or anything...just kidding.  I am looking forward to your proving him wrong.

            I just discovered that Turkanas are herdsmen in Africa (Kenya area?)...I found that name in What Is the What by Eggers about the Lost Boys of the Sudan.

            "Other cultures are not failed attempts at being you. They are unique manifestations of the human spirit." Wade Davis

            by cfk on Wed Sep 05, 2007 at 10:06:57 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

  •  always (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    Iread very often , I'm always home ,
    Read even when I sit on the throne -
    Hoping senators will leave me alone.

  •  testing photo of my own (0+ / 0-)

    "Other cultures are not failed attempts at being you. They are unique manifestations of the human spirit." Wade Davis

    by cfk on Wed Sep 19, 2007 at 03:50:44 PM PDT

  •  Yellowstone River (0+ / 0-)

    "Other cultures are not failed attempts at being you. They are unique manifestations of the human spirit." Wade Davis

    by cfk on Wed Sep 19, 2007 at 03:53:21 PM PDT

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