[lit-ideas] Re: Prince Otsu before his execution

  • From: David Ritchie <profdritchie@xxxxxxxxx>
  • To: lit-ideas@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
  • Date: Wed, 25 Feb 2015 22:12:14 -0800

Why not cut the first stanza and replace "it" in the third with "life"?  You 
avoid the repetition of "it" in the third.  My view is you don't need to 
explain who Prince Otsu was or when he was executed or how old you now are; we 
figure it out.

I write these things and join in the applause.


On Feb 25, 2015, at 10:56 AM, Lawrence Helm wrote:

>             Life isn’t as short
>             As some say.  As we
>             Age we forget the details,
>             Whether when executed at age
>             Twenty-five or thinking 
>             Back at eighty while listening
>             To a familiar Concerto.
>             Even imagining what was
>             To come and setting my
>             Seabag down to wait for the bus
>             To Camp Pendleton, and later
>             Watching the Yellow Sea
>             Come across the seeming miles
>             To lap through the wire fence at my feet,
>             It is very little amidst
>             All that was and is now forgotten.
>             We aren’t fashioned to recall it all
>             Else why would we go on?
>             Better to sit still remembering
>             All that was wonderful
>             And would never be as good again.
>             Prince Otsu experienced fleeting
>             Glimpses of what he would miss.
>             Alas, it wouldn’t have been as he
>             Imagined even if his executioners
>             Never Arrived and even if he lived to eighty.
>             He would merely sit by a fire and fail to recall
>             Much of whatever it turned out to have been.
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