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Lyrical prose as low-flying aircraft


Today someone said “lyrical” prose went over my head. My head is still spinning.

William Blake’s writing is lyrical:

Tiger, tiger, burning bright,
In the forests of the night,
What immortal hand or eye
Dare frame thy fearful symmetry?

(Excerpt from ‘The Tyger’ by William Blake.)

John Donne’s writing is lyrical:

GLORY be to God for dappled things—
For skies of couple-colour as a brindled cow;
For rose-moles all in stipple upon trout that swim;
Fresh-firecoal chestnut-falls; finches’ wings;
Landscape plotted and pieced—fold, fallow, and plough;
And all trades, their gear and tackle and trim.

(Excerpt from ‘Pied Beauty’ by John Donne.)

Tennyson is lyrical:

Break, break, break
on thy cold grey stones oh sea 
And I would that my tongue could utter
The thoughts that arise in me.

(Excerpt from ‘Break, break, break’ by Alfred Lord Tennyson.)

What else?

What else did I study in high school? Let me think: Lord of the Flies, Brave New World, Macbeth, Dibs in search of self

Back in the day we actually read books, poetry and plays. We dissected them for iambic pentameter, symbolism, cultural relevance and so on.

My first classroom discussion about euthanasia wasn’t in Social Science, it was in English when the vice principle pointed out that I’d be in line for a state execution if a Brave New World or Andra euthanasia policy was introduced. I was 14 years old at the time.

According to a critic, simple English words went over my head yesterday. I’m torn between writing an academic essay & watching more West Wing.

WEST WING CALLS. Because I have never read nor watched anything of this calibre before. I’m in love with Aaron Sorkin. I need all his things.

Seriously. I only have West Wing. I NEED ALL AARON SORKIN’S TV SHOWS.

Nalini is an award-winning writer and artist as well as managing editor of Dark Matter Zine.


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