Excerpt Tuesday – Sensibility! O La! – Theodore Roethke

SensibilityOLaAnother one from the earliest days of the blog. Throughout his life, Mr. Roethke kept extensive notebooks of thoughts, quotes, and ideas for his poems – but he was very selective about what made it into print and his biographer estimated that only 3% of the lines found in those notebooks made it into his poems. After reading his poem “Sensibility! O La!,” “mamorean” became my favorite new word for a while (it means “of marble”) – likewise with the nearly Shakespearean insult “wench of things.” To entice you read the whole poem (here!), it also includes lines such as: “Can a cat milk a hen?” and “that old harpy secreting toads in her portmanteau…” Makes you wonder what else was in those notebooks!  Photograph (looking up at Tara Donovan’s amazing sculpture made entirely of styrofoam cups – “Untitled (2003)”) and composition by me.

 

6 comments

    1. Thank you! I don’t know if the scale is apparent from the photograph, but the sculpture is massive – it takes up the whole ceiling in its gallery. Definitely worth a visit if you stop by the MFA Boston. I know her work is in a few museums around the country. “Mamorean” is such a great word – I like that biology connection!

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you! I’ve seen the sculpture multiple times and I am still blown away that all the movement and complexity comes from styrofoam cups glued together and mounted on the ceiling. I think Mr. Roethke would have liked it.

      Like

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s