For some reason, reading Emily Dickinson made me want to start reading Gerard Manly Hopkin’s Complete Poems. I’ve managed to pick it up and browse a few poems, but I’m having a hard time just sitting down and reading the book from cover to cover. Until I do that, I’m really not ready to really write about it, and it’ll be a little while longer before I can start writing, I’m afraid.
I was tempted to respond to Ron Sillman’s A Test of Poetry but I wasn’t convinced that I liked any of the four poems enough to sit down and write about them. It did make me wonder, though, if I would have recognized just how powerful Dickinson’s or Hopkins’ poetry truly is without their fame. Just how much we’re influenced by an author’s status and by his acceptance by the literary gatekeepers is a question we should all probably be asking ourselves.
Fortunately, I’ve also had a number of diversions here on the home front. It was sunny and 68 degrees here in Tacoma yesterday, far too beautiful of a day to stay inside all day and read poetry when you can actually get out and experience the poetry of nature.
To further complicate matters, I downloaded Macromedia’s Flash and purchased a tutorial that Jonathon Delacour kindly recommended to me and have managed to finish the first 311 pages of it in the last week. Combined with my new Tai Chi class and woodcarving class, I’ve suddenly managed to fill up my schedule, leaving a lot less time for reading or game playing.
So far, I’ve gotten by mainly by giving up Baldur’s Gate since I returned from California, but if I don’t get back to it soon, I’ll have to start over from the very beginning, and that’s not a pleasant thought.
Retirement is proving tougher than I ever thought it would be, and, though I’m not sure I’ve gained your sympathy with my tale of woe, I just wanted to explain my short lapse in covering new poems.