William Carlos Williams – Landscape With The Fall of Icarus

According to Brueghel
when Icarus fell
it was spring

a farmer was ploughing
his field
the whole pageantry

of the year was
awake tingling

the edge of the sea
with itself

sweating in the sun
that melted
the wings’ wax

off the coast
there was

a splash quite unnoticed
this was
Icarus drowning

William Carlos Williams, 1960

The Dharma Bums

Re-reading The Dharma Bums, which is making me feel old and weary with its faux-naivety and its golden-glow masking of the general cuntery of the protagonists involved; but every so often the odd bit of magic will shine through – particularly in the mountain scenes, which still have a simple joy about them, however forced. The odd bit like this, which comes after their moonlit descent of the Matterhorn:

We got in the car and drove back to San Francisco drinking and laughing and telling long stories and Morley really drove beautifully that night and wheeled us silently through the graying dawn streets of Berkeley as Japhy and I slept dead to the world in the seats. At some point or other I woke up like a little child and was told I was home and staggered out of the car and went across the grass into the cottage and opened my blankets and curled up and slept till late the next afternoon a completely dreamless beautiful sleep. When I woke up the next day the veins in my feet were all cleared. I had worked the blood clots right out of existence. I felt very happy. 

Rainer Maria Rilke: Lament

Everything is far
and long gone by.
I think that the star
glittering above me
has been dead for a million years.
I think there were tears
in the car I heard pass
and something terrible was said.
A clock has stopped striking in the house
across the road…
When did it start?…
I would like to step out of my heart
and go walking beneath the enormous sky.
I would like to pray.
And surely of all the stars that perished
long ago,
one still exists.
I think that I know
which one it is –
which one, at the end of its beam in the sky,
stands like a white city…

Rainer Marie Rilke