Tag: reader response

the condition of music

Walter Pater says somewhere or other, I forget where, that “All art constantly aspires towards the condition of music”. He continues, “For while in all other kinds of art it is possible to distinguish the matter from the form, and the understanding can always make this distinction, yet it is the constant effort of art to obliterate it.” What I take from this is something about the relationship between form and content: how in the best poems the equation is not form plus content = meaning, but form times content = impact/connection/experience. And this week’s poem seems to me to be one which ‘aspires’ successfully. Have a read of ‘As I Walked Out One Evening‘ by Auden, and see what you think.

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reading poems, reading us

Last week we were talking about how Gilbert’s ‘Failing and Flying’ makes visible all sorts of assumptions embedded in our (Western) culture. This week, I want to think about how reading makes visible things inside ourselves, which we may or may not have been aware of. And I want to start with what I think is a remarkable poem, written by my 13 year old goddaughter. It formed the front page of a card she sent me a few weeks ago. Here it is:

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