—The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock — by T. S. Eliot for World Poetry Day

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The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock

 

S’io credesse che mia risposta fosse
A persona che mai tornasse al mondo,
Questa fiamma staria senza piu scosse.
Ma percioche giammai di questo fondo
Non torno vivo alcun, s’i’odo il vero,
Senza tema d’infamia ti rispondo.

LET us go then, you and I,
When the evening is spread out against the sky
Like a patient etherized upon a table;
Let us go, through certain half-deserted streets,
The muttering retreats         5
Of restless nights in one-night cheap hotels
And sawdust restaurants with oyster-shells:
Streets that follow like a tedious argument
Of insidious intent
To lead you to an overwhelming question….         10
Oh, do not ask, “What is it?”
Let us go and make our visit.
In the room the women come and go
Talking of Michelangelo.
The yellow fog that rubs its back upon the window-panes,         15
The yellow smoke that rubs its muzzle on the window-panes
Licked its tongue into the corners of the evening,
Lingered upon the pools that stand in drains,
Let fall upon its back the soot that falls from chimneys,
Slipped by the terrace, made a sudden leap,         20
And seeing that it was a soft October night,
Curled once about the house, and fell asleep.
And indeed there will be time
For the yellow smoke that slides along the street,
Rubbing its back upon the window panes;         25
There will be time, there will be time
To prepare a face to meet the faces that you meet;
There will be time to murder and create,
And time for all the works and days of hands
That lift and drop a question on your plate;         30
Time for you and time for me,
And time yet for a hundred indecisions,
And for a hundred visions and revisions,
Before the taking of a toast and tea.
In the room the women come and go         35
Talking of Michelangelo.
And indeed there will be time
To wonder, “Do I dare?” and, “Do I dare?”
Time to turn back and descend the stair,
With a bald spot in the middle of my hair—         40
(They will say: “How his hair is growing thin!”)
My morning coat, my collar mounting firmly to the chin,
My necktie rich and modest, but asserted by a simple pin—
(They will say: “But how his arms and legs are thin!”)
Do I dare         45
Disturb the universe?
In a minute there is time
For decisions and revisions which a minute will reverse.
For I have known them all already, known them all:
Have known the evenings, mornings, afternoons,         50
I have measured out my life with coffee spoons;
I know the voices dying with a dying fall
Beneath the music from a farther room.
  So how should I presume?
And I have known the eyes already, known them all—         55
The eyes that fix you in a formulated phrase,
And when I am formulated, sprawling on a pin,
When I am pinned and wriggling on the wall,
Then how should I begin
To spit out all the butt-ends of my days and ways?         60
  And how should I presume?
And I have known the arms already, known them all—
Arms that are braceleted and white and bare
(But in the lamplight, downed with light brown hair!)
Is it perfume from a dress         65
That makes me so digress?
Arms that lie along a table, or wrap about a shawl.
  And should I then presume?
  And how should I begin?

.      .      .      .      .      .      .      .
Shall I say, I have gone at dusk through narrow streets         70
And watched the smoke that rises from the pipes
Of lonely men in shirt-sleeves, leaning out of windows?…
I should have been a pair of ragged claws
Scuttling across the floors of silent seas.

.      .      .      .      .      .      .      .
And the afternoon, the evening, sleeps so peacefully!         75
Smoothed by long fingers,
Asleep … tired … or it malingers,
Stretched on the floor, here beside you and me.
Should I, after tea and cakes and ices,
Have the strength to force the moment to its crisis?         80
But though I have wept and fasted, wept and prayed,
Though I have seen my head (grown slightly bald) brought in upon a platter,
I am no prophet—and here’s no great matter;
I have seen the moment of my greatness flicker,
And I have seen the eternal Footman hold my coat, and snicker,         85
And in short, I was afraid.
And would it have been worth it, after all,
After the cups, the marmalade, the tea,
Among the porcelain, among some talk of you and me,
Would it have been worth while,         90
To have bitten off the matter with a smile,
To have squeezed the universe into a ball
To roll it toward some overwhelming question,
To say: “I am Lazarus, come from the dead,
Come back to tell you all, I shall tell you all”—         95
If one, settling a pillow by her head,
  Should say: “That is not what I meant at all;
  That is not it, at all.”
And would it have been worth it, after all,
Would it have been worth while,         100
After the sunsets and the dooryards and the sprinkled streets,
After the novels, after the teacups, after the skirts that trail along the floor—
And this, and so much more?—
It is impossible to say just what I mean!
But as if a magic lantern threw the nerves in patterns on a screen:         105
Would it have been worth while
If one, settling a pillow or throwing off a shawl,
And turning toward the window, should say:
  “That is not it at all,
  That is not what I meant, at all.”

.      .      .      .      .      .      .      .
        110
No! I am not Prince Hamlet, nor was meant to be;
Am an attendant lord, one that will do
To swell a progress, start a scene or two,
Advise the prince; no doubt, an easy tool,
Deferential, glad to be of use,         115
Politic, cautious, and meticulous;
Full of high sentence, but a bit obtuse;
At times, indeed, almost ridiculous—
Almost, at times, the Fool.
I grow old … I grow old …         120
I shall wear the bottoms of my trousers rolled.
Shall I part my hair behind? Do I dare to eat a peach?
I shall wear white flannel trousers, and walk upon the beach.
I have heard the mermaids singing, each to each.
I do not think that they will sing to me.         125
I have seen them riding seaward on the waves
Combing the white hair of the waves blown back
When the wind blows the water white and black.
We have lingered in the chambers of the sea
By sea-girls wreathed with seaweed red and brown         130
Till human voices wake us, and we drown.

 

 

Source: Collected Poems 1909-1962 (1963)

http://www.bartleby.com/198/1.html

 

https://www.poetryfoundation.org/poetrymagazine/poems/44212/the-love-song-of-j-alfred-prufrock

 

https://www.poets.org/poetsorg/poet/t-s-eliot

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Seasons

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Seasons 1

 

A micro-fiction story of maximum 150 words, I contributed to Ad Hoc Fiction,  using the word “spring”.

 

Spring arrived early. Unprepared, I shed my winter clothes. In the garden, daisies greeted me, along with poppies and dandelions. I checked the seeds of hope I’d planted in November. Little green shoots displayed their leaves and tiny buds with pride.

Like my youth, Spring passed in a flash and became Summer, my middle-age. I didn’t mind the heat, though it slowed me down. Wearing shades under the canopy, I created shadows where I could enjoy the multi-coloured blooms of the Bougainvillaea. Attractive vines that thrive in strong sunlight, and need little water. I decided to imitate them, and protect myself with thorns against unwelcome visitors. But it was too late.

When Autumn arrived, I planted my seeds again, before winter confined me indoors.  A pessimist in darkness,  I asked myself, “How many more times can I do this?”

The hyacinth bulb by window answered, “Until you learn.”

 

http://adhocfiction.com/read/#FlashEbook

 

Future Love

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My take on the Prompt-Love from last week’s Flash Fiction competition at Scribblers.

 

Modigl,iani Young Girl Seated

Young Girl Seated
Date: 1918; Paris, France

 

Aurora stepped into the library and began to peruse the aisle market Classics. In 2118, paper books were only found in libraries. She liked to feel them, and turn the pages, instead of swiping the arrows on her digital appliance. The old worldly smell of the books fascinated her, and as she flipped through the yellowed pages, she wondered how many pairs of eyes must have read the words printed on these ancient tomes.

The title of the book said Sonnets, rhyming words that sounded like a lullaby. One word kept re-appearing, love, something she had to find out about.

The robot librarian approached her and scanned the tablet in his hand. “Aurora Ellis, your preferences show you’re into sports and inter-galactic thrillers. You must be in the wrong section. I’ll guide you to your favourites, away from these dusty antiques.”

Aurora fluttered her eyelids. “I’m doing a research on this ancient concept called poetry.” She pulled out her tablet from her backpack and showed the robot her assignment, signed by her instructor, Mr Shelby.

The robot studied the validation and replied in his monotone electronic voice. “I see. If you need any more help, I’ll be around.”

Aurora took a deep breath and silently thanked Basil, her classmate, for hacking into the school system to create a false assignment.

Love was a word from her recurring dreams that had begun to haunt her. It wasn’t a concept learned at home or taught at school. Mr Shelby talked about the poets from ancient times and how they composed an arrangement of words in a certain rhythm. Musical, with a set measure, that somehow stayed in her memory, like the lyrics of songs she heard on old recordings.

Why was love so important then, and not so, now? What was the difference between like and love? Aurora liked her friends, her parents, the books she read, and the games she played with or without her classmates. Did she like them all the same? She decided some were stronger. She liked her parents more than those of her friends’, and her friend, Alma, more than the other girls. Basil was her favourite among the boys.

She scanned the shelves and found a book titled Famous Quotations, inside which there was a section called Quotations on Love. She took the book to a table and began to read.

Soul meets soul on lovers’ lips. – Percy Bysshe Shelley, Prometheus Bound”
We love the things we love for what they are. —Robert Frost, Hyla Brook ”

Aurora read for a couple of hours, trying to memorize the quotes and copying the longer ones onto her tablet. When she left the library, her head was full of love. Yet, she had to experience the warmth, the spark and the feelings the ancients talked about. Someone had said, “Love is the most profound human feeling.”

She ran to Basil’s house, and once inside his room, she quoted: “You are my North, my South, my East and West, my working week and my Sunday rest.” 1

“What, are you mad?” Basil said, rolling his eyes.

“I’m quoting from W.H. Auden.”

“You’ve been reading too much poetry. Get real!”

“I am real. I love you, Basil,” she said and planted a kiss on his cheek.

Basil pulled back and blushed. She could see the spark in his eyes and feel the warmth that spread throughout the room. Aurora giggled and rushed home.

Her mother met her at the door. “Where have you been, Aurora? You’re late.”

“I was at the Library, Mum. Reading.” Aurora wrapped her arms around her and whispered in her ear. “I love you, Mummy.” Her mother patted her back, lifted her chin, and looked into her eyes. Teardrops landed on Aurora’s face.

“I knew you’d find it, ” she said. “It’s our secret.”

Aurora experimented the power of love on her best friend, her pets, and on her father the following day. The results were the same. Sparks in their eyes, warmth and comfort. They shared her secret. She remembered a quote from The Little Prince. The most beautiful things in the world cannot be seen or touched, they are felt with the heart. 2

No wonder the Leaders were trying to turn humans into robots. They were afraid of the power of love, but they didn’t know humans carried it in their hearts since the beginning of time, regardless of restrictions, and shared it only with the ones they loved. Shakespeare was right.

Love is not love
Which alters when it alteration finds,
Or bends with the remover to remove:
O no; it is an ever-fixed mark,
That looks on tempests, and is never shaken;
It is the star to every wandering bark…
3

Aurora dreamt of love at night and the quotes that would guide her throughout her life. The secret she would pass on to the next generations for the most profound feeling humans are capable of experiencing.

 

References:
1 The Little Prince, by Antoine de Saint-Exupery
2 W.H. Auden, “Stop All the Clocks”
3 Sonnet 116, William Shakespeare

#OMP #OneMillionProject #Thriller #Fiction and #Fantasy Anthologies are on Amazon

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OMP Photo

 

#OMP #OneMillionProject #Thriller , #Fiction , and #Fantasy Anthologies are on Amazon, in Kindle and paperback editions. I have contributed a story, #MummysTorchlight ,  to the Thriller Anthology, along with many other writers from around the world.

All proceeds will go to cancer research and homeless charities..

 

 

 

A gripping short story collection by 40 authors from around the world, who have come together to raise money in the fight against cancer and homelessness.

All OMP proceeds will go to cancer research and to homeless charities.

Help us to raise a little sunshine in the lives of people less fortunate than ourselves through the power of words.

 

 

A fabulous short story collection by 40 authors from around the world, who have come together to raise money in the fight against cancer and homelessness.

All OMP proceeds will go to cancer research and to homeless charities.

Help us to raise a little sunshine in the lives of people less fortunate than ourselves through the power of words.

 

 

 

A fantastic short story collection by 40 authors from around the world, who have come together to raise money in the fight against cancer and homelessness.

All OMP proceeds will go to cancer research and to homeless charities.

Help us to raise a little sunshine in the lives of people less fortunate than ourselves through the power of words.

My Review of My Name is Lucy Barton by Elizabeth Strout

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My Name is Lucy Barton

 

It’s been a couple  of days since I finished reading this book and I have been thinking about it since. What makes this book so gripping, almost haunting? It’s certainly not the plot, but definitely the voice of Lucy Barton that conveys the feelings of loneliness and isolation, and her attachment to her past, her family, her parents, and her present, her marriage and her daughters. Written in sparse language, accentuated with repetition to deliver her state of mind, her stream of consciousness, we get glimpses of Lucy’s life, her relationships or lack of relationships, and read between the lines. What is not said is poignant, as well as what has been said. A childhood deprived of love from her parents, poverty, and isolation from  the main stream of life. Lucy begins to read books to escape into another world and stays at school to do her homework to keep warm, rather than go home to the cold garage where her family lived during most of her childhood. Lucy is a good student and she breaks free from her past after her college education.

From Amgash, Illinois to Manhattan, New York, Lucy’s life changes, but the past remains with her as we gather from her conversations with her mother at the hospital where Lucy stays after an operation that has gone wrong. Lucy’s mother spends five days with her while they talk about the people in her hometown. Lives that have gone wrong, people who did well, yet experienced unhappiness in the end. Lucy hasn’t seen her mother for many years and she doesn’t see her for many years afterwards, until she visits her mother at the hospital where she dies. Lucy loves her mother, but her mother is unable to say “I love you.”

As well as the many characters from Amgash, Illinois, there are two important people in Lucy’s life that shape her career as a writer. Sarah Payne, the writer, and Jeremy, the sophisticated neighbour who dies of AIDS. Lucy loves her daughters and does not divorce her husband until they leave home. Yet, what her daughter, Becka, says afterwards is something that will stay with her all her life.

Her past is what makes Lucy. The fact that she comes from ‘nowhere’ is something her mother does not accept. It is also the reason that isolates Lucy from her new surroundings, and her husband. Jeremy says she needs to be ruthless to be a writer. Sarah Payne says, “You’ll have only one story. You’ll write your one story many ways.” Lucy knows if she doesn’t divorce her husband, she will never write another story. She finds another man who comes from ‘nowhere’ and embraces her life, her traumas, her dark side.

 

 

https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/2294446004

 

Locations from Ripples on The Pond Söğüt (Soghut), Marmaris

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söğüt-marmaris-söğütte-ne-yenir

 

Soghut, a pretty seaside village on the eastern coast of the Southern Aegean, beguiles newcomers with its stunning views of the islands in the cove, and the Greek island of Symi in the background.” 1

 

sogut-3

 

Söğüt (Soghut), a sleepy fishing village on the shores of the Southern Aegean is one of my favourite places in the greater Marmaris area. The scenic route to get there from Marmaris is well worth the ride, as the flora slowly changes from pine forests to shrubs, olive groves, and almond trees.

 

Söğüt 11

 

“A well-kept secret, with exquisite villas on the hills, it had been recently featured in Exclusive Escapes.  The article gushed:  the unspoilt beauty of its shoreline boasts of a small restaurant called The Octopus Man, renowned internationally for Ali’s unique recipe.2

 

Sogüt 1

 

It is the setting of a story called Selma of Soghut. An inhabitant of the village I came across on one of my visits became my inspiration for Selma.  I don’t have a picture of her and I’d like to keep her identity secret because the story is a figment of my imagination.

 

Sögüt 10

 

I met Selma during a walk on the pebble beach after my first scrumptious grilled octopus lunch at Ali’s. An old woman with striking blue eyes, a small, upturned nose and delicate features on her weathered face. In a printed dress that swayed with the warm breeze and a white scarf wrapped around her frizzy, grey locks, she greeted me with a toothy smile.

“Hello, are you visiting?” 3

 

Söğüt 9

 

Söğüt is still innocent, laid-back, and peaceful. It’s one of the few places in the area where mass tourism hasn’t taken its toll. There are only a handful of small hotels, fish restaurants, and modest village shops.

 

Sögüt 8

 

I hope it will continue to preserve its unique charm and remain as a tranquil spot for the yachters and visitors who come by land to enjoy its natural beauty and friendly inhabitants.

 

Söğüt Marmaris

 

123- Excerpt from Selma of Soghut, Ripples on the Pond

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Ripples on the Pond

Contributors Corner; blog post from Euphemia Hood.

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Loriya literature

I couldn’t re-blog this, so I copy pasted the blog post and gave the link at the end, to continue reading.  Many thanks to Rachel Sarah Glasgow for the lovely review of Ripples on the Pond.

  • By RACHEL SARAH GLASGOW
  • 21 Jan, 2018
  • 0 Comments

Ripples on the Pond, Ruta, and, The Rymor and I; part 1.

      I, along with Loriya Literature, am incredible lucky to have such a list of talented contributors present for the magazine and other forms of literature. I will tell you about the expertise of three of these contributors today, two of which I hold a connection to in regards to the origins of my adult writing. I wonder will know of the Authonomy site, aside from the members that is; it was indeed a very useful and exciting platform for writers.

Around six years ago I joined this site, and it was this act that gave me the confidence to go full force into the world of writing and publishing and everything that goes with it: Sebnem. E. Sanders and Kit Masters were also member and they are the two I talk of. Joseph Ippolito being the third contributor to be discussed today, a law unto himself.

Throughout this blog post I will take three pieces of work and begin to review them; however, to do these works justice this is the first part of the review, I will continue to post about these works, part one being the first quarter.

 

Sebnem. E. Sanders:

 

Sanders is offering a plethora of short stories up unto the magazine and newsletter which will only go to enhance the quality, if the fast pace and entrancing style of the anthology Ripples on thePond is anything to go by. Which, indeed it is.

You can find Ripples on the Pond via this link:

https://www.amazon.com/Ripples-Pond-Sebnem-Sanders-ebook/dp/B077XCK3SD/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1515824590&sr=1-1&keywords=ripples+on+the+pond+sebnem+e+sanders

 

The reader is thrown straight into the deep end of literary excellence with Ripples on the Ponds first offering, Through the Wings of Time , the subject matter concerns a journey through space and time, examining the differences and similarities between the ages: My Pagan nature very much appreciates the delve into the wonders of the broad expanse of time.

      I dip into time and try to exercise timelessness .

From, Through the Wings of Time.

      The reader is left pondering the question of who they are. It is easy to know who we are whilst tied to the shackles of gravity but once we experience the spirit and see past our own present life; then, who do we become? What now is our identity?

      The End and the Beginning, seems to finish off the anthology. Yet, once you have read this strange and unusual spiritual message you will understand that reality dictates that there is in fact no beginning and no end. Death is birth, and birth is death, to paraphrase the tale, we only think to the contrary through what we are taught and conditioned to think.

Forever eternal

spiral ripples

echoes,

Spreading outward

forming bigger circles

 round and round

blending into the stardust

Forever eternal.

From, The End and the Beginning .

      The body of the book does not disappoint, not least the gut wrenching tale Mummy’s Torchlight, so easily read yet so hard to take in, it paves the way for the title line whilst following the reader into their subconscious thereafter. It highlights in stark honesty Domestic Abuse and the dangers faced by the victims; but to add to the tragedy of Mummy’s Torchlight it also looks to the side of the abuser and the reasons why: Mental ill health and the lack of the appropriate resources to treat an individual quite often lead to an escalation of events. This is not to say that all who suffer mental ill health are to become abusers. I would never make such a rash generalisation. But, when the system fails the patient, it also fails everyone around them.

 

Please click on the below link to continue reading the rest of the article:

https://www.loriyaliterature.co.uk/contributors-corner-blog-post-from-euphemia-hood