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The Double Dream of Spring By John Ashbery,

  • Title: The Double Dream of Spring
  • Author: John Ashbery
  • ISBN: 9780525095064
  • Page: 403
  • Format: Hardcover
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    1. Some of the most obscure poetry every to be penned But some of the best Just don t be surprised if you can t understand a poem on your fifth, tenth, or fiftieth try It s normal.

    2. Perhaps Ashbery worked to make his poetry opaque to criticism, but that very opacity had just the opposite effect, where long poems like The Fragment have since generated thousands of pages of theories on form, meaning, and intent by a veritable battalion of esteemed academics Despite these reams of textual interrogation, I find the level of abstraction if not experimentation on the page to wash away meaning and enjoyment along with perspective and context I feel as if Ashbery is playing a game [...]

    3. This was our ambition to be small and clear and free.Alas, the summer s energy wanes quickly,A moment and it is gone And no longerMay we make the necessary arrangements, simple as they are.Our star was brighter perhaps when it had water in it.Now there is no question even of that, but onlyOf holding on to the hard earth so as not to get thrown off,With an occasional dream, a vision a robin flies acrossThe upper corner of the window, you brush your hair awayAnd cannot quite see, or a wound will f [...]

    4. Nailing down consciousness is a bit like trying to catch a fish in a stream with your bare hands Few writers succeed in rendering the effort as well as Ashbery.

    5. It is helpful to view the painting by Giorgio de Chirico from which this volume gets its title to get into Ashbery s detached and distant voice Quite frankly I struggled to grasp his intellectual refraction of the seasons of a life, and, if I comprehend correctly, of a cultural tedium which could be from any time in the history of humanity, but seems pointed to the dysfunctional mires of the 1960s when we began to perceive mass practices have sought to submerge the personality By ignoring it, ap [...]

    6. I say this because there is an uneasiness in things just now Waiting for something to be over before you are forced to notice it The pollarded trees scarcely bucking the wind and yet it s keen, it makes you fall over Clabbered sky For John ClareFrench Poems is awesome Variations, Calypso and Fugue on a Theme of Ella Wheeler Wilcox is a fucking mess Ashbury can call it a fugue if he wants.I skimmed about half of the last half a lot of it devolves into a lot of grey, abstract, subjectless lines th [...]

    7. Some of Ashbery s most mystical, beautiful poetry is in this volume I particularly love Sunrise in Suburbia Face to kiss and the wonderful hair curling down Into margins that care and are swept up again like branches Into actual closeness And the little things that lighten the day The kindness of acts long forgotten Which give us history and faith And parting at night, next to oceans, like the collapse of dying.

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