Sunday, May 4, 2008

"meteors are not needed less than mountains"

While this America settles in the mould of its vulgarity, heavily thickening to empire,
And protest, only a bubble in the molten mass, pops and sighs out, and the mass hardens,

I sadly smiling remember that the flower fades to make fruit, the fruit rots to make earth.
Out of the mother; and through the spring exultances, ripeness and decadence; and home to the mother.

You making haste haste on decay: not blameworthy;
life is good, be it stubbornly long or suddenly
A mortal splendor: meteors are not needed less than mountains: shine, perishing republic.

From "Shine, Perishing Republic" by Robinson Jeffers. Read the complete poem (with the correct line breaks)* here.

Still Life with a Skull, Paul Cézanne, 1895-1900.

*A pox on Blogger and its persnickety template.


chayaruchama said...

My, oh my.
That Cezanne, that poem.

[You're not going all 'First Fig' on me-
Are you ?]

Bozo said...

I love these poetry posts with their complementary paintings. The Jeffers/Cezanne is particularly fine.

BitterGrace said...

No, no, Chaya--It's the American empire I want to see flame out, not me. Not any time soon, anyway.

Thanks, Bozo. I just saw that Cezanne for the first time yesterday. Great, isn't it?

Yellow Cedar said...

I love this poem..."life is good, be it stubbornly long or suddenly a mortal splendor" and have even used it in one of my own blog posts. One of my favorite poems.

BitterGrace said...

I'm glad you enjoyed seeing it here, Yellow Cedar, and thanks for dropping by. I checked out your blog--I'm so sorry I haven't seen it until now. It's terrific.