The Little Review (littlereview) wrote,
The Little Review

Poem for Friday

Song of Songs
Chapter 7

How beautiful are thy steps in sandals, O prince's daughter! The roundings of thy thighs are like the links of a chain, the work of the hands of a skilled workman.

Thy navel is like a round goblet, wherein no mingled wine is wanting; thy belly is like a heap of wheat set about with lilies.

Thy two breasts are like two fawns that are twins of a gazelle.

Thy neck is as a tower of ivory; thine eyes as the pools in Heshbon, by the gate of Bath-rabbim; thy nose is like the tower of Lebanon which looketh toward Damascus.

Thy head upon thee is like Carmel, and the hair of thy head like purple; the king is held captive in the tresses thereof.

How fair and how pleasant art thou, O love, for delights!

This thy stature is like to a palm-tree, and thy breasts to clusters of grapes.

I said: 'I will climb up into the palm-tree, I will take hold of the branches thereof; and let thy breasts be as clusters of the vine, and the smell of thy countenance like apples;

And the roof of thy mouth like the best wine, that glideth down smoothly for my beloved, moving gently the lips of those that are asleep.'

I am my beloved's, and his desire is toward me.

Come, my beloved, let us go forth into the field; let us lodge in the villages.

Let us get up early to the vineyards; let us see whether the vine hath budded, whether the vine-blossom be opened, and the pomegranates be in flower; there will I give thee my love.

The mandrakes give forth fragrance, and at our doors are all manner of precious fruits, new and old, which I have laid up for thee, O my beloved.


This is the 1917 Jewish Publication Society of America translation of "Song of Songs" which I believe is the first I ever read; the Tanakh we had in the house when I was growing up was my father's, a Bar Mitzvah present that had been given to him, so that was the first one with which I was familiar. It's online here at the Jewish Virtual Library.

1. What is your opinion on karma? I believe in it on a cosmic level but not so much in terms of daily life. I have a very strong sense of balance in the universe; however, I will never be able to rationalize things like the Black Death or the Holocaust in terms of any higher power or luck or fate.
2. If anything, do you think attitude makes any difference? If you believe the world and life are good, will good things radiate toward you? If you believe otherwise, will it all be a self fulfilling prophecy? Yes and yes; or, perhaps, not necessarily but your perceptions of them will be so.
3. How has luck/chance/facts-of-life/God/karma/nature treated you so far? Quite well, and I need to remember to focus on that on days when the little things are dragging me down. Compared to the vast majority of people throughout human history I have it so, so good.
4. What is your opinion of the concept of destinies? To some extent we are shaped by our circumstances at birth and through life but I don't believe anyone's path is laid out.
5. Are both bad and good things needed in order to truly live life? Can you have the bad without the good? The good without the bad? Yes, no and no, though I think that when people have enough bad to deal with, they can become incapable of recognizing the good, and ironically when people have too much good too easily, the same thing happens.

fannish5: What five actors would you watch in almost anything?
1. Louise Fletcher
2. Anjelica Huston
3. Glenn Close
4. Lee Remick
5. Russell Crowe (yeah, this is fairly recent, but it's been every damn film he ever made, so it counts)

Why isn't Sean Bean on this list? Because he's made a couple of movies I literally could not sit through -- I can't tolerate a certain level of violence. For the sake of truth in advertising I should probably have included Kate Mulgrew, because there was a time when I would have and did sit through everything she had ever done, including some films so unwatchable that I don't know how I could stand it. But I haven't seen her in anything since Voyager in 1990, and she's a pale imitation of Remick crossed with Hepburn (whom I adore but I have not, in fact, come anywhere near to seeing her entire oeuvre -- same with Garbo), so Kate's off the list. (totallykate: I will deny ever having said this anyway!)

My younger son's stitches are out so he is a much happier person, even though it is still uncomfortable for him to eat anything rough and dry (toast, non-soggy cereal, Cheetos, etc.) He has his first graded spelling test today and though we went over "responsible" ten times, he and I are both worried that he is going to spell it "responsable" anyway. This reminds me that when I was in fourth grade, I could not spell the word "friend" correctly to save my life; every single time I spelled it "freind" no matter how often I was corrected. I wonder whether there was something psychological going on, heh.

This morning as I was walking aforementioned younger son to school and testing him on spelling, there was an incredible sky. It had shifted and faded significantly by the time I got home and got my camera but I took a couple of pictures anyway.

Down the main street of my neighborhood, pointed skyward.

And the broader view between the houses and trees.

Suddenly there are substantial signs of fall -- red leaves on these trees, yellow leaves on the tulip trees.

And here is Cinnamon waiting for me to come back.

Have an insanely busy weekend coming up. This evening we are dining with my parents before Kol Nidre. Tomorrow we are going to the noon Yom Kippur family service. Then we are violating Jewish law because Brian Jacques, who wrote the Redwall books, is having a reading and signing at the book and toy store that's walking distance from our house, so since Sunday is our older son's birthday we are taking him to meet the author. Then we are breaking the fast with my parents and three generations of two families of friends with whom we have been breaking the fast for many years.

Then Sunday, for my son's birthday, we are taking two van-loads of kids to the Maryland Renaissance Festival. The only things I know for sure are that we must see Fight Club, we are going to watch some jousting (don't worry sparowe, I will look out for your men) and instead of party favors we have been instructed to buy everyone wooden swords or axes. I am not sure how much this qualifies as an improvement over the initial stated plan by my son which was to go play laser tag and get everyone Yi-Gi-Oh cards, but at least it's idealizing historical violence instead of video games, right?
Tags: new england 04

  • Greetings from Lake Needwood

    Saturday was a gorgeous fall day, so after doing some housework in the morning, we had soup and grilled cheese for lunch, then went to Lake Needwood…

  • Greetings from the Canal

    Friday was another gorgeous day, and it was the first day of the second part of Pokemon Go's Halloween event, so when I wasn't sorting books in the…

  • Poem for Friday and Emmitsburg Grotto Water

    Photographs By Barbara Guest In the past we listened to photographs. They heard our voice speak. Alive, active. What had been distance was…

  • Post a new comment


    Anonymous comments are disabled in this journal

    default userpic

    Your IP address will be recorded