J. Alfred's Reviews > Selected Poems
J. Alfred's review
Jun 27, 2009
There is a certain way my professor used to say he liked something: he used to say it in a way that is sort of an attack on any opposite opinion, as if if someone did not like that particular thing, they had some 'splanin to do. Try and picture that sort of expression used in the following statement: I LIKE TENNYSON. I like him a lot. I love the way he takes periphrial characters, like Mariana or Oenone, and creates beautiful laments for them. I like the way he embraces the Romantic, yet stays solidly in the realms of melancholy, which strikes me as being decidedly true to life as regards real people's emotions. (I've felt more like the Locksly Hall guy than I've ever felt like Wordsworth's or even Eliot's narrators.) I love the old school morals, like unabashed patriotism and solid Jesus referances. I like just about everything about him. Also, in this volume The Lotus Eaters was right before Ulysses. Now, Ulysses deserves some consideration for the coveted My Favorite Poem of All Time award, and I'd read The Lotus Eaters before, but I'd never read them back to back like that. I am now convinced that this is the best way to read these two poems: moving from the stately, elaborate and rhetorical chorus to the clear, individual and declarative monolouge is AMAZING. It makes me want to write essays again. Also, the line in Ulysses about "all experiance" being "an arch wheretro'/ gleams that untravell'd world whose margin fades/ forever and forever when I move" is the best expression of the innate human longing for heaven that I have ever heard. Oooh so good.
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June 27, 2009 – Shelved
July 14, 2009 – Finished Reading