The Lavish Land

“April is the cruelest month,” Eliot told Pound all about it, Easter tide out, but why brood on our days unless we are made of dry wood and worry, each ring a memory of rain? Does any month feel pity? You called her a primrose, your spiral spring shell. The land tired of playing possum…

The Sea Far Away

I was trying to recall Ezra Pound’s line, “And men went down to the sea in ships.” Fine, wonderful line, except that’s not what he said. What Pound said, opening “Canto I,” I now recalled, looking it up, was, “And then went down to the ship.” And I was going to say, that if Pound…

And then went down to the book: Gloria Steinem’s The Beach Book

Gloria Steinem’s The Beach Book (1963) is dedicated “To Ocean Beach Pier that was and to Paradise Island.” But Steinem wrote little of the book, an example the first piece of Chapter One, “The Suntan”: “How to Get One.” Most of the rest of the book is a collection of writing by others, pieces related,…

“What’s Happening?”; or, the Faux Social Finish of Verb People

To twitter is indeed to sound off like a bird. “No full sentence really completes a thought,” said Hugh Kenner, in The Pound Era (1971), throwing a rock into several generations of roosting English grammar teachers: “And though we may string never so many clauses into a single compound sentence, motion leaks everywhere, like electricity…

Winter is icummen in, Lhude sing Line 15

“Winter is icummen in, / Lhude sing Goddamn,” sang the irascible Ezra Pound, and while, as far as I know, he never had to ride local Tri-Met’s Line 15, he seems to have had some experience with public transportation, for he continues, in his poem “Ancient Music”: “Skiddeth bus and sloppeth us, / An ague…

Remembrance of Things Past: or, The Card Catalog – ACCESS CLOSED!

What better way to close Open Access week than with a post on the card catalog? The Library of Congress’s In Custodia Legis (the blog of the law librarians of congress) has posted a photo of a notice users still find at the entrance to the card catalog, and librarian Christine Sellers explains: “When you…