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Monday, June 9, 2008

Words That Sing Addendum

I forgot to include the poet's name! I am so sorry mr. cummings!
My blog "Words That Sing" is about a poem by e.e. cummings.
The poem is number 32 from the collection "73 Poems."
That collection was first written or published in 1963.
I cited it from my copy of E.E. COMMINGS, COMPLETE POEMS, 1913-1962, published by Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, Publishers.

Words That Sing

all which isn't singing is mere talking
and all talking's talking to oneself
(whether that oneself be sought or seeking
master or disciple sheep or wolf)

gush to it as deity or devil
--toss in sobs and reasons threats and smiles
name it cruel fair or blessed evil--
it is you(ne'i)nobody else

drive dumb mankind dizzy with haranguing
--you are deafened evey mother's son--
all is merely talk which isn't singing
and all talking's to oneself alone

but the very song of(as mountains
feel and lovers)singing is silence

I have a love/hate relationship with words. I believe in The Word, and I believe the power of His Word, but as for human words? I think they are like shards of ill-used vessels: broken, faded, their source nearly forgotten, their meaning nearly ground to dust by careless usage...

Words have meaning, and how we use words reinforces, refreshes, enriches their meaning, or not! How does one ever really know what another person means by the words s/he uses? I relish poetry, especially e.e. cummings' because he use words in fresh, strange ways that make one think, but also let one see, and hear, and feel; and, in the experience, I believe his poetry more than many "facts."

This particular poem is a favorite of mine because it laments and celebrates this ambivalence at the same time.