Thursday, January 19, 2012

"A severed hand is an ugly thing"

...A severed hand
Is an ugly thing, and man dissevered from the earth and stars and his history...for contemplation or in fact...
Often appears atrociously ugly. Integrity is wholeness, the greatest beauty is
Organic wholeness, the wholeness of life and things, the divine beauty of the universe. Love that, not man
Apart from that, or else you will share man’s pitiful confusions, or drown in despair when his days darken.

From "The Answer" by Robinson Jeffers. The complete poem (uncorrupted by Blogger's stubborn template) is here.

January 20 is the 50th anniversary of the death of Robinson Jeffers. I'm not sure I disagree with Mark Jarman's assessment that Jeffers is "a very great, bad poet," but his poems thrill me, even so. You can find Jeffers expounding on what Jarman calls his "unjust" vision here.

Clouds Over the Sea, Ivan Alvazovsky, 1889

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