The Little Review (littlereview) wrote,
The Little Review
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Poem for Monday


To Demeter
By Maybury Fleming


Thou ever young! Persephone but gazes
  Upon thy face, and shows thee back thine own;
And every flock that on thy hillsides grazes,
  And every breeze from thy fair rivers blown,
  And all the nestlings from thy branches flown,
    Are eloquent in thy praises,
      Demeter, mother of truth.

Thy seasons of grief, thy winters white with snowing,
  More lovely make thy face, adorn thy head,
Add beauty to thy sweet eyes, ever glowing
  With love and strength and godhead; and thy tread
  Sweetens the earth; and all the gods are dead
    But thee,—thee only, strowing
      Ever the land with youth.

And all the dead gods are in thee united,
  Woman and girl and lover and friend and queen;
And this tame, time-worn world is full requited
  For that the Christ has cost us, and the teen
  Bred of swift time. And thy kissed palms between—
    Thy dear kissed hands—are righted
      The heart-knot and the ruth.

--------

Ironically enough, after I babbled yesterday about Glück's Persephone poem, we talked about her and Demeter at our Mabon ritual today, which was mostly about turning focus from the light to the dark and from the growth of summer to the harvest, though we also did a long house-blessing which required walking twice through every room in a three-story home chanting to drive out old vibes (spirits, impressions, whatever it is you believe lasts in houses after a set of owners leave) and charge it with positive energy, and that felt more like a spring cleaning than a settling in for winter. It was a long ritual, and while I was hoping to feel focused by trying to send energy to someone else and more connected spiritually than I am feeling at present about the various Jewish rituals of this season -- between rehearsals, our Bar Mitzvah, our friends' Bar Mitzvah and Rosh Hashanah next weekend, it'll be the most time I've spent in a synagogue in a month in my entire life -- I think I'm just plain ceremonied out, and need to lock myself in a room and light a candle on the actual equinox and just clear my head.

My parents took the kids to the pool, since it's the last weekend it was open for the season, and when I got back we had a quick dinner with them. Older son had had a meltdown upon discovering that his best friend already had plans for the day -- I think he's somewhat let down after last weekend and I know both kids are overtired from being up so late last night. We watched bits of the Redskins game, interrupted by me to watch Brotherhood, which was superb, if upsetting...it's so sad that for a show about a family whose very name is about the notion of family bonds, there are all these characters who think they're alone. I was actually kind of liking and feeling sorry for Tommy for much of this episode until he went and behaved like a total asshole at the end -- when he needs a thug, he calls Michael and lets Michael do what is necessary, no questions asked, but the moment he decides he doesn't need Michael anymore he says he wishes Michael had never come back. Who would have bailed out Rose if Michael hadn't been there, huh, Tommy?

And then there's Rose, who's impossible to feel sorry for when it's so apparent that what their father was hinting at was probably true, no matter how much of a bastard we're supposed to think he is for beating his current girlfriend: Rose was fucking the man who pulls the city's political strings, which is probably half of why Tommy is where he is (even though he was never her favorite son). I suppose it's not really Tommy's fault if he's corrupt -- with absolutely everyone around you corrupt it's hard to see how he could have gotten anywhere honestly -- it's the self-righteousness that's so hard to take. Whereas Michael, who makes me want to beat him senseless (sentencing 14-year-olds to death! throwing competitors off rooftops and driving Pete to drink by making him play assassin!) is also heartbreaking pulling a gun on Pete and crying because he doesn't want to shoot him, and taking crap from both his mother and his brother whose asses he has just pulled out of the fire by shoving his father -- the one family member who isn't ashamed of what Michael is -- out of all their lives.

We've been recording the episodes as Showtime airs them, and to my surprise they're advertising "season finale" rather than "series finale" for next week -- I had thought they'd only intended one season (and it makes me nervous, because I bet Jason Isaacs is a lot harder to lure back than any of the others given how much else he has going on in his career, so if they kill off a major character next week, Michael would seem to be the most likely candidate, which would upset me so much!) So do I buy the official DVDs when they come out next week, or do I assume that other than the podcasts and extras I've already downloaded from the web site, I already have whatever will be in the three-disc package already? I am torn!


Chocolate chip starfish. I thought Congressional Aquarium must have made up that name until I looked it up.


Ghost catfish. (I am not making up these names either! Look!)


I did not write down the name of this one but I assume it's a spider crab of some sort.
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Maybe I will feel more soulful tomorrow, as my horoscope says: Today is bound to be quite the interesting day, as your blood is boiling with passion and your soul is brimming with spirituality. This means that any romantic encounter you have today is likely to be intense, to say the least. In fact, all events of the day are tinged with a sacred overlay. It's hard to take anything at face value, as every event seems significant in some way. This makes for an interesting, but rather intense, day. We have had to park our vehicles some distance from the house as they are repaving our cul-de-sac, meaning I will probably be awoken at some outrageously early hour (they said 6 a.m.) by the trucks, and this may go on all week, and I am afraid to drive anywhere for fear of having trouble parking when I get back!
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