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Tag: Wallace Stevens

Wallace Stevens and the Mandolins of Spring

Wallace Stevens and the Mandolins of Spring

Watch this video on YouTube Rod Stewart’s Mandolin Wind   So, I’m up in the mountains again, and I’m reading Wallace Stevens – reading about him, reading his poems. I take music with me, listen to it before and after the readings. It’s very windy on the top of the mountain. Actually, the winds are ferocious at times. Merciless. And because I heard the Rod Stewart song in the car before I went to my place, my perfect spot, near…

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Necessary Fictions, Their Sources and Utility

Necessary Fictions, Their Sources and Utility

Stumbled upon a fascinating TED talk this morning, by Yuval Noah Harari, entitled What explains the rise of humans? In a nutshell, his thesis is that we alone, among all the species on earth, are capable of flexible cooperation in large numbers, and that the chief galvanizing force behind this is our ability to create and believe in fictions.  His recent book is now on my must-read list: Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind. From the author’s website: Homo sapiens rules…

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The Divine Invention

The Divine Invention

 The truly divine thing is invention, creation, imagination. All religions were created by novelists and poets. That has been on my mind and under my thoughts for decades. It reached the surface again tonight, like the creative process itself. In a rush, a burst, a light coming on against nuanced black. We tell stories. Some of us make stories. Some repeat them. But novelists invent, poets invent. Song-writers invent. They take things from nature and their own lives and think…

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The Idea of Order is Key

The Idea of Order is Key

Wallace Stevens is probably my favorite English language poet. His elegance, eloquence, and wordsmithiness shine above all others for me. He had wit and whimsy, along with a deep sadness and melancholy coursing through his poetry. A sometimes strange combination that worked, that merged sound and sense better than any other poet in English – to my mind. The Magritte of poets, Stevens worked for an insurance company, the Hartford, rising eventually to VP. Most, if not all of his…

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