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  #11  
Unread 08-30-2019, 03:47 AM
Andrew Frisardi Andrew Frisardi is offline
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You have a point about the note. As for being familiar with this stuff, my knowledge of the myths is spotty. This particular one has stood out for me. I'd never remember stories like this only through Ovid or Homer. What has made them stick for me especially was reading Jung, who writes about the myth of the Great Mother, the wild boar as an extension of her in her chthonic form, and the Adonis-youth sun-hero who dies and resurrects, so is parallel with Osiris, Jesus, Tammuz . . . all those Mediterranean types. When you get to know a lot of Italian mothers and their sons, it all makes an awful lot of sense. ;-)
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  #12  
Unread 08-30-2019, 03:59 AM
Mark McDonnell Mark McDonnell is offline
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Right, Jung it is then! Where should I start? He's always seemed a lot more fun than Frued. I love the idea of archetypes and the collective unconscious, but only read about it second hand when researching psychedelics, which is another thing I used to do instead of reading the Classics haha.

Cheers Andrew!
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  #13  
Unread 08-30-2019, 04:05 AM
Andrew Frisardi Andrew Frisardi is offline
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Symbols of Transformation is the one. It's the book he wrote when he broke with Freud.
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  #14  
Unread 08-30-2019, 04:07 AM
Mark McDonnell Mark McDonnell is offline
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Ok, back to the poem. Thanks!

Edit: of course, the whole thing in this poem is the speaker not quite remembering something from mythology!
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  #15  
Unread 08-30-2019, 06:11 AM
John Isbell John Isbell is offline
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Not to detract from Jung's ideas, it is perhaps worth noting that Freud writes good prose while Jung does not. At least, in German.

Cheers,
John
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  #16  
Unread 08-30-2019, 09:27 AM
Susan McLean Susan McLean is offline
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Andrew, I like the poem. I don't think you need a note on the classical allusion. People will either recognize it or not, but you have given enough information about the significance of that myth for this poem's purposes. In L8, I think you need a comma before "trembling," so that you evoke the poppies' trembling. Reckless adolescents may or may not tremble, but the poppies definitely do. I think your final couplet is the part that still needs work. It doesn't pull the whole poem together for me. I don't know any myth about poppies, either, and I don't assume there had to be one. Perhaps you can evoke why you think they merit a myth, or what that myth might have been.

Susan
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  #17  
Unread 08-30-2019, 10:18 AM
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Julie Steiner Julie Steiner is offline
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Another vote for not including a note. The whole point (in my opinion) is that the narrator doesn't know "the" official story, and seems to feel that he doesn't have permission to improvise, but he can't help doing so, despite himself. Because to be human is to tell stories, even if only to ourselves, and to create.

My impulse for making a couplets version was that the narrator needs to gather himself and get off the train, so even though he's woolgathering to a certain extent, I thought that the sentences and rhymes should be coming more quickly. But if you want more languid dreaminess, that's perfectly fine. Obviously you know this narrator's typical level of dreaminess far better than I do.
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  #18  
Unread 08-30-2019, 10:34 AM
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R. Nemo Hill R. Nemo Hill is offline
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This is a tremendous poem, Andrew. My own knowledge of myths, after years of past study, is half-buried in my unconscious, and the writer's attempt to excavate such myths parallels my own as a reader (and is announced in the title). Adding notes would be almost an insult to that shared living process of the myth remerging from the recesses of memory and mind. And I love how the poem opens as if in the midst of that process, in the midst of a thoughtóit is a vertiginous beginning and the poem pours forth from it in a stream of ever-surprising images. The construction of the rhyme that links beat their breasts for that delicious red and joins their dribbled brilliance with the dead is a gasp-inducing marriage. And the density of imagery as the octet closes is a perfect fuel for the shocks that re-awaken mythic memory. And I don't think any further punctuation in those lines is called for: rather let all the possible associations crowd together and defy rational thought, making simultaneous impressions beyond cage or capture.

The relatively calm opening of the sestet (echoed by the sober parenthetical identification of place below the title) is the perfect rest in the turbulent music before the grand finaleóthat single word, aghast, which sums up all the brutal mythic color the poem is trying to evoke. It as if all the violence of image is always lurking there below the placid surface of the quotidian. Unlike John, I feel the construction there is just perfect, and the word aghast just floating there opens like a chasm at my feet. I could almost drop to my knees at the brink of all I will never know, never be able to speak, or even think: the brink of poetry.

My only timid suggestion would be to emphasize the final word even further by placing an em-dash before it.
But please, don't analyze this one to death, and thus dilute its power. It's a stupendous poem, and those are rare.

Bravo.

Nemo
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  #19  
Unread 08-30-2019, 11:17 AM
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Allen Tice Allen Tice is offline
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On my most recent trip to England we stopped at village where I had time alone to study up close the red blossoms laid at the foot of the WW I memorial. I had an uncanny sense that I havenít had since I was a very young boy examining flowers by myself in our family garden. The images of both stick in my mind.
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  #20  
Unread 08-30-2019, 12:13 PM
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Andrew,

This suggests the microcosmic reading of flowers by Jung, the N vaguely communing with the archetypal self growing and radiating out of its center. And if itís a poppy thereís the association of sleepiness, Morpheus, relief, even death. I admire the suggestive indefiniteness of the poem (interestingly, after a trip to a termini, at an end, or barrier?).
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