Friday, October 28, 2011

In the Navy....

I have given thee wings to fly with ease aloft the boundless sea and all the land. No meal or feast but thou'lt be there, couched 'twixt the lips of many a guest, and lovely youths shall sing thee clear and well in orderly wise to the clear-voiced flute. And when thou comest to go down to the lamentable house of Hades in the depths of the gloomy earth, never, albeit thou be dead, shalt thou lose thy fame, but men will think of thee as one of immortal name, Cyrnus, who rangeth the land of Greece and the isles thereof —crossing the fishy unharvestable deep not upon horseback mounted but sped of the glorious gifts of the violet-crownad Muses unto all that care to receive thee; and living as they thou shalt be a song unto posterity so long as Earth and Sun abide. Yet as for me, thou hast no respect for me, great or small, but deceivest me with words as if I were a little child.
- Theognis of Megara (237-254)

29 comments:

Elmers Brother said...

You can Sail the seven seas

Elmers Brother said...

Lord I miss it. (Gonna borrow the video)

-FJ said...

Go ahead. I thought of our old blog when I posted it.

Elmers Brother said...

it's still there. If I weren't writing essays for college I'd be writing stuff there. Taking a break next semester. Maybe I'll put some stuff up there. It's cathartic.

Elmers Brother said...

"I am not afraid of storms for I have learned how to sail my ship." - Louisa May Alcott.

-FJ said...

Batten down the hatches! ;)

Elmers Brother said...

Perhaps Yeats is more appropriate now, as I sail every day closer to the Promised Land:

THAT is no country for old men. The young
In one another's arms, birds in the trees
- Those dying generations - at their song,
The salmon-falls, the mackerel-crowded seas,
Fish, flesh, or fowl, commend all summer long
Whatever is begotten, born, and dies.
Caught in that sensual music all neglect
Monuments of unageing intellect.

An aged man is but a paltry thing,
A tattered coat upon a stick, unless
Soul clap its hands and sing, and louder sing
For every tatter in its mortal dress,
Nor is there singing school but studying
Monuments of its own magnificence;
And therefore I have sailed the seas and come
To the holy city of Byzantium.

O sages standing in God's holy fire
As in the gold mosaic of a wall,
Come from the holy fire, perne in a gyre,
And be the singing-masters of my soul.
Consume my heart away; sick with desire
And fastened to a dying animal
It knows not what it is; and gather me
Into the artifice of eternity.

Once out of nature I shall never take
My bodily form from any natural thing,
But such a form as Grecian goldsmiths make
Of hammered gold and gold enamelling
To keep a drowsy Emperor awake;
Or set upon a golden bough to sing
To lords and ladies of Byzantium
Of what is past, or passing, or to come.

Elmers Brother said...

perne in a gyre...life is winding down eh?

-FJ said...

Ixion's wheel never stops spinning.

Elmers Brother said...

I really like this poem, but I suppose it's been over analyzed. Have you seen the movie No Country for Old Men? I love the parallels, Sheriff Bell feeling his age, outliving his usefulness as a sheriff...like the tattered coat on a stick. I feel his pain. Cool imagery...but it also makes you think. Life passes by so quickly,

-FJ said...

That's why I'm enjoying this Zizek/Lacan series... learning how to transfer the "objet le petit a" via one's own Ego instead of experiencing the "melancholy" of getting it shifted via one's SuperEgo (The Other). It's learning to be in control of your own Will/volition through your own "desires".

If you can cut the old chords via mourning... you can avoid the conflicts in melancholia.

-FJ said...

In "No country for old men"... the mourning is suspended... one can't cut the chords with the "old" desires and move on to "new" ones. This forces the characters into melancholy and the feelings that accompany "old age".

...or something like that. I wasn't really paying attention years ago when I saw the movie.

-FJ said...

...and the longing for the "eternity" in the "Big Other" is a source of melancholy. To choose the reality principle's Big Death over the pleasure principle's little death's (orgasm).

-FJ said...

It's hard to cut the chords to older "objects of desire" so that they can be attached to new ones.

Elmers Brother said...

I suppose my feelings about the Navy fall into that category.

Elmers Brother said...

So how does Freud suggest those chords be cut? What if like Hamlet we've found a substitute already?

-FJ said...

Well I suppose you've heard and loved the songs Brandy and Sweet Painted Lady. The pleasure principle seeks "little deaths" (pleasures) to replace others... but the melancholy sets in after we loose desire for these substitute pleasures as well... desires (objet le petit a) would appear to get nested within ever larger and longer term objects.

So maybe you buy a boat to get away from your wife. ;)

-FJ said...

...or you take her on a cruise. ;)

Elmers Brother said...

I tried the cruise...last year on our 25th...wasn't that impressed. Maybe it was because we ended up in Mexico and got sick from the food.

And I don't think she'd like it if I sent her after a BT punch.

-FJ said...

;)

-FJ said...

You don't have to bring the ballerina. ;)

Elmers Brother said...

Who's gonna bring the water though? I live in Arizona.

Elmers Brother said...

I'd probably end up overboard like that captain if I left the wife. We did get a sailing license together...17 footers is all.

-FJ said...

I'm more of a rowboat kinda guy. Give me a fishing pole and a small lake inlet to fish in... and a weekend far-far away from the wife, kids, and work responsibilities. ;)

Elmers Brother said...

that does sound good

-FJ said...

As for the "warrior" aspects... I've gotten a bit too soft for that. I even let the fish go.

Elmers Brother said...

I went trout fishing in Oregon back in August. We caught a few over the limit (25). Got to feed a few to the bald eagles.

I'm not much of a fisherman, don't go very often but I do enjoy it.

-FJ said...

I'm not any kind of fisherman or hunter. Both are just an excuse for me to get away and have some "me alone" time. As Thoreau once remarked (Walden)...

I long ago lost a hound, a bay horse, and a turtle-dove, and am still on their trail. Many are the travelers I have spoken concerning them, describing their tracks and what calls they answered to. I have met one or two who have heard the hound, and the tramp of the horse, and even seen the dove disappear behind a cloud, and they seemed as anxious to recover them as if they had lost them themselves.

Elmers Brother said...

Wonderful!