If you’re my age, near to it, or older than me – though I can’t vouch for the younger sorts – you’ve had some exposure to the tale of Icarus and his father, Daedalus. And, we’ve always had taught to us a cautionary tale against hubris or excessive ambition – essentially a fable of what dire consequences come from not knowing your place and acting above your station or means.
But what then if Icarus laughed as he burned and fell?
Yes, what if Icarus laughed through his pain as he burned and fell? That would change the tenor and the moral of this ancient fable.
There is a bitter triumph in crashing when you should be soaring
And isn’t there such a bitter triumph? To fly in the face of greater powers; to force them to recognize your existence; to feel their wrath upon your flesh, knowing that those powers can wrack and ruin your flesh, end your body’s life, but cannot quell your soul. That is triumph, albeit a bitter one. That is a death well-earned and rarely equaled.
There is a certain beauty in setting the world on fire
and watching from the centre of the flames
And yes! I’m honest enough to admit – indeed, to proclaim – that there is a certain beauty in destruction and that the best and greatest view of it if from the epicenter of the flames.
So not what Ovid’s work was meant to teach, but truer to the spirit of Man. What greater and more terrible beauty can there be than scream out our spite till the flames melt our lungs and burn out our voices? What more awesome beauty is there for any of to see than world burning around us until it melts the eyes from our faces?
It is hard to deny the beauty and majesty of not just refusing to go quietly into the long night; not just raging raging against its coming – but laughing as we bring the light of our pyre into it.
Requiem Ultra Repris
(Click to Enlarge)
It’s past the centennial of the Armistice that ended WW1, but I feel that the dead of that long ago war deserve a reprise of their requiem. And, thanks to the calligraphic skills and efforts of Satwinder Sehmi, this is easy to do. On top of that, his rendering ofÂ Lieutenant Colonel John McCrae’s iconic poem as a poppy is brilliant.
In Flanders Fields
In Flanders fields the poppies blow
Between the crosses, row on row,
That mark our place, and in the sky,
The larks, still bravely singing, fly,
Scarce heard amid the guns below.
We are the dead; short days ago
We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,
Loved and were loved, and now we lie
In Flanders fields.
Take up our quarrel with the foe!
To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high!
If ye break faith with us who die
We shall not sleep, though poppies grow
In Flanders fields.
Indeed, by way of a history lesson, In Flanders Fields is cited as the reason that the poppy is the symbol of remembrance for those who died in service and in war.
It’s almost hard to believe that a year has passed and that today, August 9, 2015 marks the first anniversary of of Officer David Wilson having to put down Michael Brown in Ferguson, MO.
Such sensationalized events must be remembered and memorialized, lest we forget what happened and doom ourselves to be shocked when history repeats itself.
Michael Brown Memorial
And there is, on the internet at least, a fitting memorial of Michael Brown. Apt, apropos, and a pithy, it a fitting summation of this ghetto thug’s existence and “contribution” to history.
There once was a thug named Brown
Who bum-rushed a cop with a frown
Six bullets later
He met his creator
Then his homies burnt down the town
Yes, let each and every American remember Michael Brown’s death and the savage and senseless violence that sparked. let each and every American remember keep it in their minds that this is what happens when Americans have to deal with the more feral cultures we allow live within our border.
Most people think that math and poetry are polar opposites. This, however, is not true. Take, for instance, this mathematical limerick:
What? This doesn’t seem to be a limerick to you? Let’s translate the formula into prose…
A dozen, a gross, and a score,
plus three times the square root of four,
divided by seven,
plus five times eleven,
is nine squared and not a bit more.
See? Math and poetry can be one and the same. It’s just take a little work and some understanding 😛