This is yet another part of my week-long tribute to the birthday of Wallace Stevens. This short poem by British poet, Martin Bell (1918-1978) picks up on the gourmet/gourmand interests of Stevens. It also reflects the variety of Stevens’s diction from the “Doggone” to the “rococo” and the dissonance between the praise and the bray. “The Emperor of Ice-Cream” is certainly invoked. It’s a nifty six-line tribute to two men who toiled to illuminate the unconscious, the active imagination, and the many links between art and the human mind.
|Wallace Stevens Welcomes Doctor Jung into Heaven
‘Doggone, they’ve let you in at last, Doc! Gee,
Notes on the day: I’m currently listening to Haydn’s String Quartet Opus 76, number 5. What harmonic playfulness! He mixes his notes to achieve the “cantabile e mesto” attribution he gave it: “singing and sad”. I think 2016 can fairly be called the year of the string quartet for me. I have had operatic years, symphonic years, years of concerti and ballet. Years of all cello all the time and years of Maria Callas and Edward Elgar.
Reading: I am currently reading White Trash: The 400-Year Untold History of Class in America by historian Nancy Isenberg. I am only one generation away from “white trash” so I find the book particularly intriguing. I am also reveling in the opposition: The Rector of Justin by Louis Auchincloss, the saga of the headmaster of a prestigious New England boarding school.