[lit-ideas] Tuesday Hermeneutics (Was: Monday Poem)

  • From: Jlsperanza@xxxxxxx
  • To: lit-ideas@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
  • Date: Tue, 23 Oct 2007 11:27:13 EDT

David, I hope you can do better than L. "Helm" Helm, who, when I offered my  
heart-felt interpretation, all he said was that it was 'beyond' what he meant, 
 and that his creation being too recent, he felt unable to cope with an 
exegesis  of it.
I did not understand a lot of your nice verse. "Chartlon" is a hue of  white? 
That's one entry in the OED, 'Charlton white'. I'm not sure what you mean  
gentleman's appliance shop. No such thing in the OED. I suppose you mean they  
would sell things like shaving cream, but that you'd rather think it was all  
pornographic (and women fallen from an honourable life). I can't see how you 
can  say this belongs to your childhood. It sounds more Victorian to me. On  
researching collocations for 'gentleman's', I was intererested in "the  
gentleman's C", which was now a B+ and what someone (male) gets just for his  
and good breeding.
I am interested in reminiscences. I suppose the gentleman's appliance shop  
applies to your childhood in London.
I can't see why you have to EXPLAIN an ad, Victorian or other. Don't you  
find that teachers are on many an occasion asked to explain something that it's 
self-explanatory. Especially in literature classes, I find it rather 
irritating  that someone is explaining a novel which was never meant to be 
and  that does not need a relevant "Novel Studies" to make it be relevant. Your 
other  parts I understood better. You teach medicine? I thought you taught art.
Yes, fall (or autumn) is very nice, and I liked your imagery of the leaves  
going to the gutter, which reminds me of another Londoner (like you), Gertrude  
Lawrence. Noel Coward said she knew about things and that she was proud to 
say  that she came not in, but from the gutters.
And you have to let me know, under the other thread, what your favourite  
Loeb, or the one you'd feel like reading now, is.

"while students write i
consider outside the classroom window the fall  of leaves
spinning in the sun
down to ground zero
bright red
bright  yellow
like wobbling rockets
out of fuel
i glance back to tell my  students a money's worth about
hernias, trusses and prolapsed  bladders
explaining nineteenth century newspaper ads
and while my mouth  works
like some movie with sound fadeout
my mind brings up childhood
as  now it often does
waiting for a bus
on a bleak dark day--what other kinds  were there-- in autumnal charlton
standing in the rain beside the panes of a  gentleman's appliance shop
a forbidden and forbidding place
where no one  under twenty one was allowed
we boys wondered if pornography was in  there
or maybe they kept a fallen woman
beneath the counter
and we  raced leaves
our gazes intent
upon the gutter."

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