Monday, 31 October 2011
How many legs has a centipede?
Lithobius meccanus, the Terminator centipede
Well, if it is a hundred, (which it isn't, but could be over forty, depending) and I were a centipede I'd be down to my last three or four. Awake at 4 am, full day's work, then event, with the same to come tomorrow, then the flight to Munich. My intentionality involves sleep and cognizance of the fact that the word YES is not the only word in the dictionary.
Tomorrow I read with Yang Lian at UEA. The Munich reading is at the university on Thursday.
Tried Dylan Thomas's Fern Hill on second year undergraduates today. It doesn't cut it. It just doesn't cut it. It doesn't ring true. It feels like visionary Disneyland (nobody said that but deep down I suspect that's how they felt). I suppose it is understandable for much the same reasons as it was for Larkin, but I can't help thinking once the ecstatic disappears off the verbal radar the world of the imagination feels a little narrower. Maybe the poem seems like a supercharged advert for country life. Mr Larkin's I Remember, I remember is closer to the mark. Nothing, like something, happens anywhere, yes, but I sang in my chains like the sea. Well, occasionally.