it’s always when a man’s swollen
with love and everything
that it keeps raining
good for the trees and the
grass and the air…
good for things that
I would give anything
for a females hand on me
they soften a man and
then leave him
listening to the rain.
I was a private tutor at the time, I was helping my student understand the nuances of language and how to write essays for his humanities classes. Real writing can never be learned it is innate, however how to get an A on a high-school/college essay writing can be taught.
I used various canonical and non-canonical pieces of literature to illustrate rhetorical devises, stylistic elements, the tumultuous relationship at times between diction imagery etc. I used an exert of Saramago’s Balthazar and Blimunda to talk about the stylistic ramifications of the author’s use of diction in the creation of the persona of the narrator.
In Saramago’s Nobel Prize winning corpus of work, it is through women that there is redemption. I was surprised by how well developed the female characters were in his works. Usually women are like Kleenex in a lot of literature: they represent some sort of purity or something positive and good for only one blow. However women in Saramago’s world are complex character that at any moment can break out of the ‘seeming’ power struggle between the sexes, or between society and the individual to open a door to some sort of redemption regardless of whether they are the central character of the novel or not. Thankfully Saramago’s depiction never approaches a fawning idolisation of women, as I detest a fawning idolation of anything. His book Blindness which was made into the movie of the same moniker starring Julianne Moore. Here is a brief Synopsis from Wiki:
Blindness is the story of an unexplained mass epidemic of blindness afflicting nearly everyone in an unnamed city, and the social breakdown that swiftly follows. The novel follows the misfortunes of a handful of characters who are among the first to be stricken and centers on “the doctor’s wife,” her husband, several of his patients, and assorted others, thrown together by chance. This group bands together in a family-like unit to survive by their wits and by the unexplained good fortune that the doctor’s wife has escaped the blindness. The sudden onset and unexplained origin and nature of the blindness cause widespread panic, and the social order rapidly unravels as the government attempts to contain the apparent contagion and keep order via increasingly repressive and inept measures.
Where Am I going with this
I’m going back a few hundred years earlier and a few hundred miles away from Lisboa to the Ibn el Arabi a Sufi mystic, poet and one of the greatest philosophers the world has known. I quote from an Essay written by Laurence Galian THE CENTRALITY OF THE DIVINE FEMININE IN SUFISMDISCLAIMER: While I do not follow any religion I have a deep reverence for all traditions, despite the current happenings world wide . I received some negative comments for this post and it would be nice to put opinion and politics aside for a moment)
He [Ibn el Arabi] relates that man’s supreme witnessing of Allâh is in the form of the woman during the act of sexual union. He writes, “The contemplation of Allâh in woman is the highest form of contemplation possible: As the Divine Reality is inaccessible in respect of the Essence, and there is contemplation only in a substance, the contemplation of God in women is the most intense and the most perfect; and the union which is the most intense (in the sensible order, which serves as support for this contemplation) is the conjugal act.” Allâh as the Beloved in Sûfî literature, the ma‘shûq, is always depicted with female iconography.
I cannot help but notice that from ancient times in every form of creative expression there is this deep seated belief in the sanctity of womanhood, a sentiment that is very lacking current in our culture. Take a look at this poem from the French Symbolist poet Verlaine:
Je fais souvent ce rêve étrange et pénétrant / I have often this strange and penetrating dream
D’une femme inconnue, et que j’aime, et qui m’aime/ Of an unknown women, & I love her & she loves me
Et qui n’est, chaque fois, ni tout à fait la même / And who is neither different each time
Ni tout à fait une autre, et m’aime et me comprend/ Nor compelete an other, and she love and understands me
Really interesting poem, not only for the assonance sonorous propensities, but for the Jungian implications about the portrayal and project of the anima into the sphere of art.
Known atheist Richard Dawkins said the only way to address poverty/overpopulation in the third world is to emancipate and educate women. I think the three women Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, Leymah Gbowee, Tawakkol Karman winning the Nobel Peace Prize in 2011 “for their non-violent struggle for the safety of women and for women’s rights to full participation in peace-building work” speaks volumes. I’m really surprised that this issue is something atheist and non agree about.
Talk is Cheap
So why am I writing all of this ? Well for starters it’s easy to talk a good game, like when I tells ladies in a dark bar/lounge that I am a poet and pawn off lines of obscure poets no one reads as my own. On a side note to make it more realistic I say that I I abstain from wearing scarves despite my beign a poet but ironically free-ball it during the winter months when erections mean so much more. See doesn’t that scream eccentric.
Btw verse/line – comes fro Mian Muhammad Baksh; the dramatic irony in this case begs the question “How can one satisfy those who remain unsatisfied. Genius see how that works!
(Those Whom love has Chosen as It’s Friend)
They embrace their Beloved day and night and yet remain unsatisfied;
They cry floods of tears and remain unappeased
Seriously though, the majority of my readers and comment-makers here are women, so I thought as this is the month to celebrate ladies why not do something nice and have my name up there with the Greats. I have decided to interview lady bloggers who I like and just talk, and thank em for the nice touches they add to the net and the blogosphere. Stay tuned as I am still interview and editing, but it will be all kinds of awesome.
BTW If you pee sitting down (i.e. are a women) and would like to be interviewed leave a comment and I will be happy to oblige