William Carlos Williams

The sea will wash in
but the rocks - jagged ribs
riding the cloth of foam
or a knob or pinnacles
       with gannets -
are the stubborn man.

He invites the storm, he
lives by it? Instinct
with fears that are not fears
but prickles of ecstasy,
a secret liquor, a fire
that inflames his blood to
coldness so that the rocks
seem rather to leap
at the sea than the sea
to envelop them. They strain
forward to grasp ships
or even the sky itself that
bends down to be torn
upon them. To which he says,
It is I! I who am the rocks!
With out me nothing laughs.

William Carlos Williams seems to attempt the same merging of identity that D. H. Lawrence does in his MANA OF THE SEA, but for me, Williams carries it off more convincingly and I love the exhuberance of Williams' delivery. Clearly there is a trace of hubris in his final comment that "With out me nothing laughs." But intrepid geologists are indeed the salt of the earth....JRD

Previous 1

Pages: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29,

Next 1