2015年12月28日 星期一


"Do not go gentle into that good night" by Dylan Thomas (1914 - 1953)
Do not go gentle into that good night,
Old age should burn and rave at close of day;
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.
Though wise men at their end know dark is right,
Because their words had forked no lightning they
Do not go gentle into that good night.
Good men, the last wave by, crying how bright
Their frail deeds might have danced in a green bay,
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.
Wild men who caught and sang the sun in flight,
And learn, too late, they grieved it on its way,
Do not go gentle into that good night.
Grave men, near death, who see with blinding sight
Blind eyes could blaze like meteors and be gay,
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.
And you, my father, there on the sad height,
Curse, bless, me now with your fierce tears, I pray.
Do not go gentle into that good night.
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.
The first of its kind--a comprehensive collection of the best of the villanelle, a delightful poetic form whose popularity ranks only behind that of the sonnet and the haiku. With its intricate rhyme scheme and dance-like pattern of repeating lines, its marriage of recurrence and surprise, the villanelle is a form that has fascinated poets since its introduction almost two centuries ago. Many well-known poets in the past have tried their hands at the villanelle, and the form is enjoying a revival among poets writing today. The poems collected here range from the classic villanelles of the nineteenth century to such famous and memorable examples as Dylan Thomas's "Do not go gentle into that good night," Elizabeth Bishop's "One Art," and Sylvia Plath's "Mad Girl's Love Song." Here too are the cutting-edge works of contemporary poets, including Sherman Alexie, Lorna Dee Cervantes, Rita Dove, Seamus Heaney, Paul Muldoon, and many others whose poems demonstrate the dazzling variety that can be found within the parameters of a single, strict form. READ an excerpt from the introduction here: http://knopfdoubleday.com/book/215655/villanelles/

《中英對照讀新聞》Singing ’rewires’ damaged brain 唱歌讓受傷大腦「重新通電」
Teaching stroke patients to sing "rewires" their brains, helping them recover their speech, say scientists. By singing, patients use a different area of the brain from the area involved in speech. If a person’s "speech centre" is damaged by a stroke, they can learn to use their "singing centre" instead.
An ongoing clinical trial, they said, has shown how the brain responds to this "melodic intonation therapy". The therapy is already established as a medical technique.
Most of the connections between brain areas that control movement and those that control hearing are on the left side of the brain. But there’s a sort of corresponding hole on the right side. For some reason, it’s not as endowed with these connections, so the left side is used much more in speech. But as patients learn to put their words to melodies, the crucial connections form on the right side of their brains.
During the therapy sessions, patients are taught to put their words to simple melodies. After a single session, a stroke patients who was are not able to form any intelligible words learned to say the phrase "I am thirsty" by combining each syllable with the note of a melody.
ongoing:形容詞,正在進行的。例句:No agreement has yet been reached and the negotiations are still ongoing.(目前談判尚未達成協議,仍在進行當中。)
be endowed with:片語,與生俱有……。例句:Some lucky people are endowed with both brains and beauty.(一些幸運的人智慧與美貌兼具。)
intelligible:形容詞,(說話或寫字)清晰的。例句:She was so upset when she spoke that she was hardly intelligible.(她難過到說話都說不太清楚。)


To provide with new wiring: rewired the old house.

To install new wiring.

terza rima

pl. ter·ze ri·me (tĕr'tsĕ rē').
A verse form of Italian origin consisting of tercets of 10 or 11 syllables with the middle line rhyming with the first and third lines of the following tercet.
[Italian : terza, feminine of terzo, third + rima, rhyme.]

terza rima [ter‐tsă ree‐mă]a verse form consisting of a sequence of interlinked tercets rhyming aba bcb cdc ded etc. Thus the second line of each tercet provides the rhyme for the first and third lines of the next; the sequence closes with one line (or in a few cases, two lines) rhyming with the middle line of the last tercet: yzy z (z). The form was invented by Dante Alighieri for his Divina Commedia (c.1320), using the Italian hendecasyllabic line. It has been adopted by several poets in English pentameters, notably by P. B. Shelley in his ‘Ode to the West Wind’ (1820).

villanelleLine breaks: vil¦lan|elle
Pronunciation: /ˌvɪləˈnɛl/ 

Definition of villanelle in English:


pastoral or lyrical poem of nineteen lines, with only two rhymes throughout, and some lines repeated.
  • But in my beginning classes, the first thing they have to learn until they get to that point where I see they have it under control is blues, blues-sonnets, regular sonnets, villanelles, sestinas, haikus, tankas, and odes.
  • There were ballades, chants royal, kyrielles, pantoums, rondeaux, rondels, rondeau redoubles, Sicilian octaves, roundels, sestinas, triolets, villanelles, and virelais to play with, and poets of varying merit had a go.
  • We are still writing sonnets, villanelles, sestinas, even pantoums and triolets, ballades and rondels, as well as inventing ‘nonce’ forms to suit our uses.


Late 19th century: from French, from Italian villanella (see villanella).

villanelle (also known as villanesque)[1] is a nineteen-line poetic form consisting of five tercets followed by a quatrain. There are two refrains and two repeating rhymes, with the first and third line of the first tercet repeated alternately until the last stanza, which includes both repeated lines. The villanelle is an example of a fixed verse form. The word derives from Latin, then Italian, and is related to the initial subject of the form being the pastoral.
The form started as a simple ballad-like song with no fixed form; this fixed quality would only come much later, from the poem "Villanelle (J'ay perdu ma Tourterelle)" (1606) by Jean Passerat. From this point, its evolution into the "fixed form" used in the present day is debated. Despite its French origins, the majority of villanelles have been written in English, a trend which began in the late nineteenth century. The villanelle has been noted as a form that frequently treats the subject of obsessions, and one which appeals to outsiders; its defining feature of repetition prevents it from having a conventional tone.


The word villanelle derives from the Italian villanella, referring to a rustic song or dance,[2] and which comes from villano, meaning peasant or villein.[3] Villano derives from the Medieval Latin villanus, meaning a "farmhand".[4] The etymology of the word relates to the fact that the form's initial distinguishing feature was the pastoral subject.[2]


2015年12月26日 星期六

"Nativity a Christmas" by John Donne

"Nativity a Christmas" by John Donne
Immensity cloistered in thy dear womb,
Now leaves His well-belov'd imprisonment,
There He hath made Himself to His intent
Weak enough, now into the world to come;
But O, for thee, for Him, hath the inn no room?
Yet lay Him in this stall, and from the Orient,
Stars and wise men will travel to prevent
The effect of Herod's jealous general doom.
Seest thou, my soul, with thy faith's eyes, how He
Which fills all place, yet none holds Him, doth lie?
Was not His pity towards thee wondrous high,
That would have need to be pitied by thee?
Kiss Him, and with Him into Egypt go,
With His kind mother, who partakes thy woe.
The magnificent Seventeenth-Century metaphysical poet John Donne created new forms of lyric, satire, erotic poems, and religious verse that left poetry in English forever changed. From his famously sensual love poems to his equally passionate and powerful Holy Sonnets, Donne's forceful language and ingenious wit encompass a remarkable range of tones. His poetry reflects every stage of his personal development, from the piratical Jack Donne who sailed with Sir Walter Ralegh against the Spaniards and spent riotous nights in the London streets, to the penitent John Donne who became Dean of St. Paul's and the most celebrated preacher of his age. His independence of view, compact manner of expressing conflicting moods, impassioned paradoxes, and outbreakes of cynicism and wry humor make his work particularly appealing to modern readers. This edition, compiled and introduced by C. A. Patrides, is recognized as the most complete and scholarly one-volume collection of Donne's Complete English Poems available.

2015年12月20日 星期日

At The Grave of Robert Lowell

    Robert Lowell
    Robert Traill Spence Lowell IV was an American poet. He was born into a Boston Brahmin family that could trace its origins back to the Mayflower. His family, past and present, were important subjects in his poetry.Wikipedia


Five Poems

Henri Cole
At The Grave of Robert Lowell
On this tenth day of the year, I play Stravinsky
and sip vodka from a paper cup, taking in the view.
Tendrils twining, leaves rippling, guts absorbing nutrients,
brains processing information—all of it is dust now.
He, she, all of them lie under sod, men and women
no longer rivals in love. Bodies grow old and fester.
History is like an Impressionist painting, a variegated
landscape of emotional colors. As night falls,
owls, bats, and hedgehogs come out to hunt.
I take joy in considering my generation. I rewrite
to be read, though feel shame acknowledging it.
Scattered among imposing trees, the ancient
and the modern intersect, spreading germs of pain
and happiness. I curl up in my fleece and drink.
To read the rest of this piece, purchase the issue.

At The Grave of Robert Lowell
by Henri Cole
On this tenth day of the year, I play Stravinsky
and sip vodka from a paper cup, taking in the view.
Tendrils twining, leaves rippling, guts absorbing nutrients,
brains processing information—all of it is dust now.
在這第十一天的一年, 我玩斯特拉文斯基
和吸一口伏特加, 從一個紙杯, 要在檢視.
枝帶著twining, 葉盡, 有種吸營養需求,
大腦處理資訊-全部是灰塵, 現在.
The Paris Review is a literary magazine featuring original writing, art, and in-depth interviews with famous writers.

"The Oxen" by Thomas Hardy

"The Oxen" by Thomas Hardy
Christmas Eve, and twelve of the clock.
“Now they are all on their knees,”
An elder said as we sat in a flock
By the embers in hearthside ease.
We pictured the meek mild creatures where
They dwelt in their strawy pen,
Nor did it occur to one of us there
To doubt they were kneeling then.
So fair a fancy few would weave
In these years! Yet, I feel,
If someone said on Christmas Eve,
“Come; see the oxen kneel,
“In the lonely barton by yonder coomb
Our childhood used to know,”
I should go with him in the gloom,
Hoping it might be so.
Poems: Hardy contains poems from Moments of Vision, Satires of Circumstance, Veteris Vestigia Flammae, Heredity, Short Stories, Afterwards, and an index of first lines.

2015年12月18日 星期五


Uploaded on Jan 11, 2009
This fascinating poem by Yeats is a marvel of rhythmic complexity and theosophical contemplation. Hear, read and wonder!

W.B. Yeats:

I RISE in the dawn, and I kneel and blow
Till the seed of the fire flicker and glow;
And then I must scrub and bake and sweep
Till stars are beginning to blink and peep;
And the young lie long and dream in their bed
Of the matching of ribbons for bosom and head,
And their day goes over in idleness,
And they sigh if the wind but lift a tress:
While I must work because I am old,
And the seed of the fire gets feeble and cold.


Suddenly I saw the cold and rook-delighting heaven
That seemed as though ice burned and was but the more ice,
And thereupon imagination and heart were driven
So wild that every casual thought of that and this
Vanished, and left but memories, that should be out of season
With the hot blood of youth, of love crossed long ago;
And I took all thc blame out of all sense and reason,
Until I cried and trembled and rocked to and fro,
Riddled with light. Ah! when the ghost begins to quicken,
Confusion of the death-bed over, is it sent
Out naked on the roads, as the books say, and stricken
By the injustice of the skies for punishment?

*****W.B. Yeats (1865–1939).  The Wind Among the Reeds.  1899. 

18. A Poet to his Beloved 

I BRING you with reverent hands
The books of my numberless dreams;
White woman that passion has worn
As the tide wears the dove-gray sands,
And with heart more old than the horn         5
That is brimmed from the pale fire of time:
White woman with numberless dreams
I bring you my passionate rhyme.

2015年12月12日 星期六

Sonnet XXX


Sonnet XXX
When to the sessions of sweet silent thought
I summon up remembrance of things past,
I sigh the lack of many a thing I sought,
And with old woes new wail my dear time's waste:
Then can I drown an eye, unused to flow,
For precious friends hid in death's dateless night,
And weep afresh love's long since cancelled woe,
And moan the expense of many a vanished sight:
Then can I grieve at grievances foregone,
And heavily from woe to woe tell o'er
The sad account of fore-bemoaned moan,
Which I new pay as if not paid before.
But if the while I think on thee, dear friend,
All losses are restor'd and sorrows end.
Sonnet 30
When to the Seſſions of ſweet ſilent thought,
I ſommon vp remembrance of things paſt,
I ſigh the lacke of many a thing I ſought,
And with old woes new waile my deare times waſte:
Then can I drowne an eye (vn-vſ’d to flow)
For precious friends hid in deaths dateles night,
And weepe a freſh loues long ſince canceld woe,
And mone th’expence of many a vanniſht ſight.
Then can I greeue at greeuances fore-gon,
And heauily from woe to woe tell ore
The ſad account of fore-bemoned mone,
Which I new pay as if not payd before.
But if the while I thinke on thee (deare friend)
All loſſes are reſtord, and ſorrowes end.

The Importance of Emily Dickinson's Manuscripts

from the New Republic archives...

Every transcription of handwriting into print misses something. With Dickinson's manuscripts, transcriptions miss a whole lot.

a special animated video of the poet Philip Larkin reading The Trees

The literary genius died 30 years ago this month.

A beautiful animation of Philip Larkin’s The Trees

For the 30th anniversary of Philip Larkin’s death, BBC Culture commissioned a special animated video of the poet reading The Trees. Click on the arrow above to watch the video.

The Trees is one of Larkin’s most famous and best-loved poems. In it, the poet equates the renewal of the seasons with death and pain: “Their greenness is a kind of grief”, he writes. But while it is regularly called one of the greatest poems about Spring, Larkin’s own feelings about The Trees were more ambivalent.
As his colleague James Booth explains in his article onEngland’s miserable genius, Larkin was aware that the emotional uplift of The Trees would make it popular. But he himself dismissed it as ”very corny”, and even "bloody awful tripe".
Watch this beautiful animation created by Lucy Izzard for BBC Culture and see what you think.

The Trees, by Philip Larkin
The trees are coming into leaf
Like something almost being said;
The recent buds relax and spread,
Their greenness is a kind of grief.
Is it that they are born again
And we grow old? No, they die too,
Their yearly trick of looking new
Is written down in rings of grain.
Yet still the unresting castles thresh
In fullgrown thickness every May.
Last year is dead, they seem to say,
Begin afresh, afresh, afresh.
If you would like to comment on this story or anything else you have seen on BBC Culture, head over to our Facebook page or message us on Twitter.
This story is a part of BBC Britain – a series focused on exploring this extraordinary island, one story at a time. Readers outside of the UK can see every BBC Britain story by heading to the Britain homepage; you also can see our latest stories by following us on Facebook and Twitter.

兩則筆記:莎士比亞,......W.H. Auden, The Fall of Rome

梁實秋先生在下段並沒有將 satiety翻譯出來: "膩於日常生活之心滿意足之累"satiety
談藝:梁實秋譯Preface to Shakespeare前兩段;趙翼『論詩』(五首)

rl (張瑞麟) 留言:
re: 也許你有興趣將它們(Preface to Shakespeare的前兩段,梁實秋編著《英國文學史》協志工業叢書,卷二 第九六六頁—rl 指出)打出來,供大家觀摩梁實秋先生之翻譯。

NOTHING can please many, and please long, but just representations of general nature. Particular manners can be known to few, and therefore few only can judge how nearly they are copied. The irregular combinations of fanciful invention may delight awhile, by that novelty of which the common satiety of life sends us all in quest: but the pleasures of sudden wonder are soon exhausted, and the mind can only repose on the stability of truth.

Shakespeare is above all writers, at least above all modem writers, the poet of nature; the poet that holds up to his readers a faithful mirror of manners and of life. His characters are not modified by the customs of particular places, unpractised by the rest of the world: by the peculiarities of studies or professions, which can operate but upon small numbers; or by the accidents of transient fashions or temporary opinions: they are the genuine progeny of common humanity, such as the world will always supply, and observation will always find. His persons act and speak by the influence of those general passions and principles by which all minds are agitated, and the whole system of life is continued in motion. In the writings of other poets a character is too often an individual; in those of Shakespeare it is commonly a species.


February 11, 2001
Brush Up Your Shakespeare

Auden takes on the playwright and poet in a series of lectures reconstructed by those who heard them.


  • W. H. Auden Reads From His Poetry (March 27, 1972) Related Link
  • First Chapter: 'Lectures on Shakespeare'

  • ----
  • The piers are pummelled by the waves;
    In a lonely field the rain
    Lashes an abandoned train;
    Outlaws fill the mountain caves.
    Fantastic grow the evening gowns;
    Agents of the Fisc pursue
    Absconding tax-defaulters through
    The sewers of provincial towns.
    Private rites of magic send
    The temple prostitutes to sleep;
    All the literati keep
    An imaginary friend.
    Cerebrotonic Cato may
    Extol the Ancient Disciplines,
    But the muscle-bound Marines
    Mutiny for food and pay.
    Caesar’s double-bed is warm
    As an unimportant clerk
    On a pink official form.
    Unendowed with wealth or pity,
    Little birds with scarlet legs,
    Sitting on their speckled eggs,
    Eye each flu-infected city.
    Altogether elsewhere, vast
    Herds of reindeer move across
    Miles and miles of golden moss,
    Silently and very fast.
    --W.H. Auden, The Fall of Rome