Monthly Archives: June 2015

We Wonder

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remember back then
when we watched
and we wondered
how she would grow
what she would become
and now we know
yet still we wonder
and we ask each other
“what has become of her?”

doll-67221

© Jane Paterson Basil

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3 Quote Challenge. Day 1

Thank you Fimnora at Quantum Hermit for inviting me to take part in this 3 quote challenge. For anyone who has not yet found their way to her blog, I suggest you check it out now. She lives in a little known town called Defying Reason, and her posts are full of good music and entertaining observations.

The life and ethics of Mahatma Gandhi are well documented. I don’t need to tell you about him. This is my favourite of his quotes.

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Be the change you want to see in the world.

Mahatma Gandhi

For the challenge, the rules are:

I – Post your favorite quotes or your own quotes for three (3) posts in a row.

II – Thank the person who nominated you.

III – Pass it on to three (3) other bloggers per quote, each time you post them.

IIIb – Or pass it to nine (9) bloggers if you choose to post all the quotes together, in the same post.

Today I am inviting these guys to come out and play;

Lynne at Word Shamble

Judy at Lifelessons

Meredith at Meredith’s Musings

© Jane Paterson Basil

What about Ben Jonson?

Why should William Shakespeare get all the attention? Here is my interpretation of Ben Jonson’s famous poem.

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Celia with my interpretation in italics.

Drinke to me, onely, with thine eyes,
And I will pledge with mine;
shush. look at me
and I’ll make eye promises

Or leave a kisse but in the cup,
And Ile not looke for wine.
If you kiss the inside of a cup
I’ll scrap the booze

The thirst, that from the soule doth rise,
Doth aske a drinke divine:
actually, scraping your kiss out of the cup
would be great.

But might I of Jove’s Nectar sup,
I would not change for thine.
even if I was offered the best drink in the world
I’d prefer to imbibe the soggy kiss-in-a-cup

I sent thee, late, a rosie wreath,
Not so much honoring thee,
that lovely rose
wasn’t sent because I like you

As giving it a hope, that there
It could not withered be.
but to give it a chance to
maybe live forever

But thou thereon did’st onely breath,
And sent’st it back to mee:
but you just breathed on it
and sent it back

Since when it growes, and smells, I sweare,
Not of it selfe, but thee.
and now it’s growing, and smells,
just like you

The original:

Drinke to me, onely, with thine eyes,
And I will pledge with mine;
Or leave a kisse but in the cup,
And Ile not looke for wine.

The thirst, that from the soule doth rise,
Doth aske a drinke divine:
But might I of Jove’s Nectar sup,
I would not change for thine.

I sent thee, late, a rosie wreath,
Not so much honoring thee,
As giving it a hope, that there
It could not withered be.

But thou thereon did’st onely breath,
And sent’st it back to mee:
Since when it growes, and smells, I sweare,
Not of it selfe, but thee.

My interpretation:

shush… look at me,
and I’ll make eye promises.
if you kiss the inside of a cup
I’ll scrap the booze.

actually, scraping your kiss out of the cup
would be great.
even if I was offered the best drink in the world,
I’d prefer to imbibe the soggy kiss-in-a-cup.

that lovely rose
wasn’t sent because I like you,
but to give it a chance to
maybe live forever.

but you just breathed on it
and sent it back,
and now it’s growing, and smells,
just like you.

© Jane Paterson Basil

Shakin’ up Shakespeare

For the benefit of those who find Shakespeare’s poetry too flowery and difficult to understand, I have paraphrased another of his poems, taking it entirely out of context, of course. I hope he’s not turning in his grave. This poem suggests that he didn’t expect to.

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“Fear no more the heat of the sun” with paraphrasing

Fear no more the heat o’ the sun
Nor the furious winter’s rages;
don’t worry about the weather
Thou thy worldly task hast done,
Home art gone, and ta’en thy wages:
you’re dead.
Golden lads and girls all must,
As chimney-sweepers, come to dust.
everyone dies.

Fear no more the frown o’ the great;
Thou art past the tyrant’s stroke;
the gits can’t get to you now.
care no more to clothe and eat;
To thee the reed is as the oak:
no point in getting togged up for dinner.
The scepter, learning, physic, must
All follow this, and come to dust.
everyone dies.

Fear no more the lightning flash,
Nor the all-dreaded thunder stone;
I mentioned the weather, didn’t I?
Fear not slander, censure rash;
Thou hast finished joy and moan:
don’t take any notice of what people say about you.
All lovers young, all lovers must
Consign to thee, and come to dust.
hope you don’t mind being surrounded by snogging couples.

No exorciser harm thee!
Nor no witchcraft charm thee!
magic can’t do anything now!
Ghost unlaid forbear thee!
Nothing ill come near thee!
nothing can,
Quiet consummation have;
And renownèd be thy grave!
you’re dead. oh! and you’re dead famous too.

This is the way William Shakespeares version looks:

Fear no more the heat o’ the sun
Nor the furious winter’s rages;
Thou thy worldly task hast done,
Home art gone, and ta’en thy wages:
Golden lads and girls all must,
As chimney-sweepers, come to dust.

Fear no more the frown o’ the great;
Thou art past the tyrant’s stroke;
Care no more to clothe and eat;
To thee the reed is as the oak:
The scepter, learning, physic, must
All follow this, and come to dust.

Fear no more the lightning flash,
Nor the all-dreaded thunder stone;
Fear not slander, censure rash;
Thou hast finished joy and moan:
All lovers young, all lovers must
Consign to thee, and come to dust.

No exorciser harm thee!
Nor no witchcraft charm thee!
Ghost unlaid forbear thee!
Nothing ill come near thee!
Quiet consummation have;
And renownèd be thy grave!

This is my interpretation, which is far less wordy, and therefore more ecological when printed onto paper. Shakespeares generation didn’t worry about wasting resources as we do:

don’t worry about the weather,
you’re dead.
everyone dies

the gits can’t get to you now.
there’s no point in getting togged up for dinner,
everyone dies

I mentioned the weather, didn’t I?
don’t take any notice of what people say about you.
hope you don’t mind being surrounded by snogging couples.

magic can’t do anything now!
nothing can.
you’re dead. Oh! and you’re dead famous too.

© Jane Paterson Basil

In response to The Daily Post’s writing prompt: “Generation XYZ.”

people-20

Let me collect ten
thousand people
and group them
into generations,
giving each person
paper and a pen.
let me ask them
twenty questions
connected to their
views and habits.
when I collect the
replies, I will expect
to see close similarities
between the ages.

many young people
may say that they
like new technology,
but so will more than
a few of the old.

and many elderly folk
feel that the world flows
too fast for them, but
some of the young
will agree.

there are drug addicts in their eighties,
and twenty-somethings with ferrets.
sometimes a boy of fifteen
may talk of traditional values,
while a seventy-five year-old woman
may develop a desire to write kindly
letters to prisoners on death row.

Old, young or somewhere
in-between. the only
difference is how much time we’ve
put in at any given moment.
I’ve done a sixty stretch
and counting. my
youngest grandchild
is at the beginning. he
is where he is and later
he’ll be somewhere else.
he hasn’t yet learned the
things that I know, and
he will learn different things,
because he will have alternative
experiences and understanding of
life. he’ll learn what he
learns and will continue to
be the person he is, growing
and learning all the time,
as we all do.

he is as much
or as little as I am;
as we all are.

the dead have left their fingerprint
on this fertile haven.
the unborn wait in line,
and the world grows older
in it’s own time.

© Jane Paterson Basil

Three Glowing Sparks

I love Esther Newton’s weekly challenges!

Esther’s challenge this week is to write a poem or story based on the visual prompt of a haunted lighthouse.

stepping  from
       the car with  an 
          airy feeling  in 
          her head  and  her 
        feet, and a return of
       that  lost  freedom 
       she hasn't  felt 
        since      then, 
           a  lifetime  ago,
             she lets the grey 
             glow  in  the  sky 
            lead  her  where it 
          may; along  familiar 
        lanes,  abandoned  by 
        her; so, so long ago
         in the  vain  and
          hopeless  hope
         that the pain 
        may  fade
      one day,
     one
     day
      forever 
         awaited,
            and yet she 
              roams these 
              roads   again 
            untouched now  by
        the memory of       then;
   of  that  searing  second, minute, 
 hour, day, week, month, year, eternity
when everything had screamed within her.
 when. everything. good. was. dead.
   everything     dead.
      everything
         except 
            her.
              now the 
              old windmill
            towers above her,
          its crumbling walls 
       concealing worm eaten 
     floorboards which 
     killed........
      and now  two 
         illuminated 
           figures approach 
            and she walks into 
             their silken glow.
            her   children
          have waited
       in this place  
      these many years 
      so  patiently   waited  
        for her embrace and as they 
           all  join  hands  her   form
               shimmers into translucence.

                 several   miles   away, 
                  strangers  stand in 
                  shock beside the 
                 wreck of a car, 
               mourning     her 
             shredded  shell  on 
          the blood-spattered bonnet
      and sadly  shaking  their heads.
   an  approaching  siren  wails,  and 
  they turn their heads   from  death;  
   but    I    see     the      three 
     glowing    sparks     as   they 
      leave the heart of the woman 
        and soar up to the sky
         and I know that 
        she's healed 
      at last.

© Jane Paterson Basil

Rust Tinted Blood

vampire

scrubbed and scented she entered his chamber
told by the whispers of silken gown
his eyes were directed towards the fire
stroking his shoulder she sat herself down

drunken with passion and lust’s sharp flavour
the hidden warnings had passed her unseen
dusk’s grey menace precipitating
rust tinted blood on her scarlet sheen

savouring thoughts of wanton desire
she turned to her swain and looked in his face
expecting reflections of her in his eyes
and ready to welcome a naked embrace

suddenly terror replaced her longing
he caught her tightly as if in a mesh
fangs which glistened the colour of danger
plunged into her throat, tearing her flesh

in the moonlit gloom of that secret room
she lay bloodless and faded white
and through the next day, still she lay
’til the sun gave its space to the night

gently her bridegroom awoke her from slumber
to night eternal and many new ways
they romped and they fed, left their victims undead
and they hid from the sun’s melting rays

she hadn’t been looking for love everlasting
that fateful night when she proffered her treasure
but the knowledge that never again should she perish
filled her bloodless heart with soulless pleasure

© Jane Paterson Basil