Monday, November 29, 2010

hip, enjoy, next year


Posted by PicasaOnce a rose, now a fruit, a brighter red than the rose it used to be.

"Enjoy," says the girl at the supermarket counter where I am buying some sausage. I might be in New York.

"Under the familiar weight
Of winter, conscience and the State,
In loose formations of good cheer,
Love, language, loneliness and fear,
Towards the habit of next year,
Along the streets the people flow,
Singing or sighing as they go."
Although the new year is still a month or so away the melancholy opening lines of Auden's New Year Letter come to mind as I come home through  the streets of Tunbridge Wells. A copy of the book, a gift from a friend, to whose mother, a poet it belonged, has been on my desk for several weeks. The book itself, with its orange cover and title in heavy black type, gives as much pleasure as the poem. It was first published in 1941, the second edition in 1942.

3 comments:

CC said...

Love your rose hip portrait.
Also your latest observations.
Much appreciated.

Barrett Bonden said...

So even the future is weary, flat, stale and unprofitable and it's all done with one unexceptional noun "habit".

Mind you, another single word "Enjoy!", as an exhortation, produces almost the same reaction. If unintended.

Plutarch said...

Cheers, CC.

BB Though I fear I am a creature of habit, I share your sentiments. An instance of the principle that we are the harshest critics of our own faults in others