Tuesday, June 06, 2006

Trapped in Poetry

An interesting thread came up on Beekslayers yesterday. Somebody mentioned "The Eyre Affair" by Jasper Fforde, in which one of the minor characters gets trapped inside a Wordsworth poem. This brought up the question- if you could be trapped inside a poem, what poem would it be? Or, if you feel like you are trapped inside a poem, what poem is it?

Given the chaos on the internet and the state of the nation in general, Lewis Carroll immediately sprang to mind...

`Twas brillig, and the slithy toves
Did gyre and gimble in the wabe:
All mimsy were the borogoves,
And the mome raths outgrabe.

"Beware the Jabberwock, my son!
The jaws that bite, the claws that catch!
Beware the Jubjub bird, and shun
The frumious Bandersnatch!"

He took his vorpal sword in hand:
Long time the manxome foe he sought --
So rested he by the Tumtum tree,
And stood awhile in thought.

And, as in uffish thought he stood,
The Jabberwock, with eyes of flame,
Came whiffling through the tulgey wood,
And burbled as it came!

One, two! One, two! And through and through
The vorpal blade went snicker-snack!
He left it dead, and with its head
He went galumphing back.

"And, has thou slain the Jabberwock?
Come to my arms, my beamish boy!
O frabjous day! Callooh! Callay!'
He chortled in his joy.

`Twas brillig, and the slithy toves
Did gyre and gimble in the wabe;
All mimsy were the borogoves,
And the mome raths outgrabe.

well now.

Here's the poem that started the discussion-

"Daffodils" by William Wordsworth (1804)

I Wander'd lonely as a cloud
That floats on high o'er vales and hills,
When all at once I saw a crowd,
A host, of golden daffodils;
Beside the lake, beneath the trees,
Fluttering and dancing in the breeze.

Continuous as the stars that shine
And twinkle on the Milky Way,
They stretch'd in never-ending line
Along the margin of a bay:
Ten thousand saw I at a glance,
Tossing their heads in sprightly dance.

The waves beside them danced; but they
Out-did the sparkling waves in glee:
A poet could not but be gay,
In such a jocund company:
I gazed -- and gazed -- but little thought
What wealth the show to me had brought:

For oft, when on my couch I lie
In vacant or in pensive mood,
They flash upon that inward eye
Which is the bliss of solitude;
And then my heart with pleasure fills,
And dances with the daffodils.


CKW said...

I wanna be caught in nicole kiddman - I know she's not a poem per se, but she's very poetic to look at!

I especially love the iambic pentameter of her yokryic.


Mike said...

I am not sure what poem I would want to be trapped in, but I feel like I have trapped in "Howl" by Allen Ginsberg for most of my life.

Of course there is my favorite Richard Brautigan poem...

A piece of green pepper
off the wooden salad bowl:
so what?

Colonel Colonel said...

Over on Beekslayers Phoebe contributed a ditty about a girl fron Nantucket...

catalyst said...

Shortest poem in the world:


had 'em.