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Favourite poems

Discussion in 'The Cave' started by Gagnrad, Jun 29, 2015.

  1. b612

    b612 New Member

    Alain Colmerauer (born 24 January 1941, Carcassonne) is a French computer scientist. After completing his Ph.D. at the University of Grenoble, he spent 1967–1970 as Assistant Professor at the University of Montreal, where he created Q-Systems, one of the earliest linguistic formalisms used in the development of the TAUM-METEO machine translation prototype.


    He created a logic programming language called Prolog. You can read about Prolog here https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Prolog .

    Here's how a sentence in Prolog looks like:


    jealous(X,Y):- loves(X,Z), loves(Y,Z).

    Am I a windbag? Jesus! It looks like ee cummings

    [i carry your heart with me(i carry it in]
    i carry your heart with me (i carry it in
    my heart) i am never without it (anywhere
    i go you go, my dear; and whatever is done
    by only me is your doing, my darling)
    i fear
    no fate (for you are my fate, my sweet) i want
    no world (for beautiful you are my world, my true)
    and it's you are whatever a moon has always meant
    and whatever a sun will always sing is you

    here is the deepest secret nobody knows
    (here is the root of the root and the bud of the bud
    and the sky of the sky of a tree called life; which grows
    higher than the soul can hope or mind can hide)
    and this is the wonder that's keeping the stars apart

    i carry your heart (i carry it in my heart)

    I Have Found What You Are Like
    i have found what you are like
    the rain,

    (Who feathers frightened fields
    with the superior dust-of-sleep. wields

    easily the pale club of the wind

    This one would come out with an error message

    I Will Be
    i will be
    M o ving in the Street of her

    bodyfee 1 inga ro undMe the traffic of
    lovely;muscles-sinke x p i r i n g S
    Y totouch

    Voila voila c'est tout. :glasses:
    Last edited: Sep 26, 2015
    Optimalbound likes this.
  2. Gagnrad

    Gagnrad New Member

    Yeah, but I think one has to bear in mind that that is what education in England used to be like. Think of the lessons shown in Stalky & Co. Education in the public schools and the grammar schools was based around the classics, particularly Latin. It was Arnold's innovation at Rugby to introduce the study of modern languages! I know of grammar schools that as late as the 1930s had the A stream learning Latin and the B stream put to science subjects.

    Interesting thing here. Latin is now a dead language, but did you ever wonder who killed it? My understanding is that it was the humanists. (I'm using that word in its original sense to mean people interested in humane learning, not in its modern politicised sense. Think of people like Erasmus and Sir Thomas More.) So the recovery of the classics - approx 16th century - meant getting the linguistic tools to read Greek texts. It also meant people struggling towards what they regarded as a "purer" Latin. That meant Latin of the "Golden Age". Unfortunately, they'd failed to realise that the language had changed, because people had continued to adapt it to fit new uses. My understanding is that, for example, the medieval philosophers had developed it in quite useful and powerful ways. Among other things, it's said, they made some great advances in logic that were later lost … and we then had to wait for people like Frege and Russell to rediscover the same, only in a new idiom. So the scholars, while making some important advances, also froze the language and killed it.

    Back to Housman … I think Kipling could have written something like "When I was one-and-twenty …" almost as if it were a compositional exercise and taken a turn around the garden before Housman had finished sucking his pen.

    I do quite like Housman's "Epitaph on an Army of Mercenaries". This is about the BEF stopping the Germans on Marne, isn't it? It was a professional army, of course - hence "mercenaries". He rose to the occasion there.

    But again think of Kipling. Such facility with language. Again and again and again he does it. These are very moving:

  3. Gagnrad

    Gagnrad New Member

    How about a sonnet from Sir Philip Sidney?

    Come Sleep! O Sleep, the certain knot of peace,
    The baiting-place of wit, the balm of woe,
    The poor man's wealth, the prisoner's release,
    Th' indifferent judge between the high and low.
    With shield of proof shield me from out the prease
    Of those fierce darts despair at me doth throw:
    O make in me those civil wars to cease;
    I will good tribute pay, if thou do so.
    Take thou of me smooth pillows, sweetest bed,
    A chamber deaf to noise and blind to light,
    A rosy garland and a weary head:
    And if these things, as being thine by right,
    Move not thy heavy grace, thou shalt in me,
    Livelier than elsewhere, Stella's image see.

  4. notsoperfick

    notsoperfick New Member

    I don't know Sidney, my education in the classics is sadly lacking. I have just looked him up though and another of his. Quite hard work as some of the language is a little obscure now, mmm, perhaps I don't mean obscure, archaic maybe.

    Socialism killed Latin, it's so obviously elitist that it had to go ;) you'll likely only find it in fee paying schools. My Grammar school taught it of course, but the LEA turned it into a comprehensive then closed it and it has now been demolished and the land sold (no doubt to capitalists) to build houses. That's the socialist way, complete eradication so that there can be no resurrection. In a town where there are more houses than people I'm sure.
    Gagnrad likes this.
  5. b612

    b612 New Member

    "Paleo forum"

    by b612

    autumn 2015

    windows phone nokia lumia 830

    let me warm up here a little bit :

    daisies are blue,

    bacon is blue, through your sunglasses, too.

    here's the poem

    i don't know anymore

    if i'm a girl

    or a sea

    i asked a tourist to take a picture of me

    to ask you what you think

    about those 48 kilos

    of me.
    Gagnrad likes this.
  6. b612

    b612 New Member

    please forgive me. Its the first poem i've everwritten.
  7. Gagnrad

    Gagnrad New Member

    The Arcadia is supposed to be vey good. I have got a copy but never round to reading it:


    Another very romantic figure - soldier and poet from the golden age of English. He died fighting the Spanish in the the Netherlands. Charlotte Yonge brings him in briefly as a character in The Chaplet of Pearls, which is a fairly good historical novel.

    LOL. Still, it is a kind of interesting thing to think that it was a dead language already when it was killed. All through the Middle Ages Latin was still a living language. And this was why it was able to be the lingua franca for Western Europe.
  8. Gagnrad

    Gagnrad New Member

    I didn't understand it at first - about three quarters of that is you larking around before you start, isn't ? I like "those 48 kilos of me". That's a clever twist.

    I was thinking someone could probably work up a good satire in verse on paleo forums if they thought long enough about it. Because paleo forums do have their ridiculous side, don't they? I often used to think that reading some of the posts at MDA.

    I mean this. Most of the poetry in the world is about either the emotion of erotic love or religious emotion. There's a reason for that. It's because these experiences shake people up, challenge their ordinary ways of seeing, and seem to point towards the transcendent. People contemplating their own small selves aren't really that interesting:

    Dayadhvam: I have heard the key
    Turn in the door once and turn once only
    We think of the key, each in his prison
    Thinking of the key, each confirms a prison ...

    The near-obsession with one's own physical health that you will find on some paleo boards would be sad if it weren't ridiculous. (Plato ridicules this kind of thing in the Republic, which shows it was already going on in Ancient Greece.) Where it's people seeking answers for health problems it's one thing (and one hopes, anyway, people doing that have other interests in life). But all this nonsense about tweaking and "perfecting" diets and exercise regimes just because people have got nothing else to fill their time and their minds with. There are people who actually worry about their abdominal muscles being able to be seen through the fat layer. In fact, there are even some women who do that - and some who have gone into eating-disorder behaviour because of it, because the fat layer should be proportionately rather thicker on women.

    Another reason I like the WAPF is because Sally Fallon did get interested in diet mostly because she was interested in diets for pregnancy and for growing children. So there is a wider context.

    But there's certainly room for some satire directed at the paleo forums.
    Last edited: Sep 30, 2015
  9. Gagnrad

    Gagnrad New Member

  10. notsoperfick

    notsoperfick New Member

    A poem about paleo fora, ha, we need Weird Al Yankovic. Try this lol -
    b612 likes this.
  11. b612

    b612 New Member

    With Jack in the front :rofl:
  12. Gagnrad

    Gagnrad New Member

    You are the cold that you feel
    It's fun to CT today ...
    b612 likes this.
  13. b612

    b612 New Member

    You forgot ".........................................."

    I've been dancing all the afternoon. Rock'n'roll kind of songs.

    I found this one. Just imagine Jack with a pink purple Jack singing

    Yo no soy marinero
    Yo no soy marinero, soy capitan
    Soy capitan, soy capitan

  14. Gagnrad

    Gagnrad New Member

    How about some nonsense verse?

    I have an idea that nonsense verse might be something peculiarly English - though I can think of one American example I might post later - and if so perhaps there's some deep cultural root to it. But I don't know. There is a book on this subject by a history academic, but I haven't read it:


    Lewis Carroll seems a good place to start. (Maybe with him there's some connection with his interest in mathematics and logical games.)

    "The Walrus and the Carpenter" comes to mind - and as a bonus for this place oysters come into the poem:

    "I weep for you," the Walrus said: "I deeply sympathize."
    With sobs and tears he sorted out
    Those of the largest size,
    Holding his pocket-handkerchief Before his streaming eyes.

    But let's begin at the beginning:

    The sun was shining on the sea,
    Shining with all his might:
    He did his very best to make
    The billows smooth and bright--
    And this was odd, because it was The middle of the night. ...

  15. Gagnrad

    Gagnrad New Member

    "A Pavane for the Nursery" by William Jay Smith:


    Emma Matthews the Australian coloratura soprano sings a setting of this, put to music by an Australian composer, on her album Emma Matthews in Monte Carlo.

    They may have a hole in the O₃ layer, but at least they've got a good soprano Down Under ...
  16. Jack Kruse

    Jack Kruse Administrator

    Light sculpts our proteins to give us the life we get. Light truly is one of the greatest mysteries in the universe. Life has its enigmatic events, that can create a mystery, or slowly evolve our misery. It all depends on the perspective we use to see, and is ultimately determined by what kind of light enters our retina to build our frontal lobes. This is why we must approach our life's scientifically and not poetically. We can enjoy the prose of life but we cannot allow it to dominate our attention.
  17. Gagnrad

    Gagnrad New Member

    The humanities have their uses. I'm not sure I could ever bring you to understand this. They are certainly more than entertainment, and would have died out before now in favour of TV and video games if that were all they were. But their purpose and meaning is not perhaps that easy to understand. I have linked at least one important lecture by a world-leading philosopher on this before. However, this is all a disputed area anyway. Here, at any rate, is a view on the matter for those who are interested:


    I think there are some good poems in this thread, some of them posted by me. My regret is that I did not leave anything better here or elsewhere on this site. As the Dakota say:


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