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“Look thou not on beauty’s charming” by Sir Walter Scott is a beautiful fragment contained in “Lucy Ashton’s Song”. Sir Walter Scott, Scottish novelist, poet, historian, and biographer is often considered both the inventor and the greatest practitioner of the historical novel. I chose this small corner of Scott’s work because it is immediate, balanced and deceptively simple, like a zen koan. The Turner painting highlighted in this poetry frame is “Keelman heaving coal by moonlight” NGA 1942.9.86 A good example of Turner’s genius when working with shades of light. Delightful! I hope you enjoy the poetry frame “Look not thou on beauty’s charming”. BWEJ 2023
Chesterton was widely published and authored the popular “Father Brown” detective series. An articulate and literary English gentleman and author for many years. I selected his “Strange Music” as the foundation for a poetry frame because it is beautiful, and gently mysterious… I hope you enjoy the poetry frame “Strange Music”! BWEJ 2023
Walter de la Mare is one of my favourite poets. I especially enjoy his collection entitled “Come Hither”. I have chosen the poem “All that’s past” as the foundation for this poetry frame that also highlights the outstanding painting “The River of Light” (1877) by Frederick Edwin Church. I hope you enjoy this poetry frame and the timeless ambience of this lovely combination of word and image! Best Wishes, BWEJ 2023
“An Arab Love Song” is a good example of the way poetry frames may be used to highlight a theme or mood by combining the defining words with images (and music background) that are congruent with the same theme. The words by Francis Thomson are highlighted by two little known works by Marsel (1865) that are housed (but not on display) at the National Gallery of Art in the Netherlands. Both of these works, verse and image, are highlighted and enhanced by this powerful combination. The sum is more than the individual parts. This poetry-frame is something unique, distinct; a multi-media presentation that impacts and makes an impression that is both new and impactful. It is an opportunity to revisit and highlight works that may not be currently well known. I hope you enjoy listening and viewing the poetry frame “An Arab Love Song”. BWEJ
This old Nursery Rhyme (anon) has a rhythm and a simple logic that is amenable to bedtime reading for children. And also for the children still present within receptive adults. The simplicity and easy-going repetition, down the stairs, is a pleasant foil during an angular day. Softness. And the light-hearted bounce up the stairs as the circle concludes is always somehow vaguely satisfying… the child in us skips along with the regular predictable beat. However, an additional reason I chose this poem was that reading these lines…I noticed it was still kind of resonating a day or two later. I hope you enjoy the poetry frame “the Key to the Kingdom” BWEJ
John Masefield was the English Poet Laureate from 1930 until his demise in 1967. “Sea Fever” and “Everlasting Mercy” are perhaps his best known poems. The beautiful painting by Monet, and also Moran (insert) work well as a backdrop for Masefield’s beautiful verse. I have been reading the author Patrick O’Brian and his vivid historical descriptions of life on and around the sea. The culture of sailing and the Sea was pervasive in England for hundreds of years. It is awe inspiring, the expanse and depth of the sea. This, no doubt, inclined me to choose this poetry at this time. I hope you enjoy this poetry frame based on the poem “Sea Fever” by John Masefield. BWEJ 2023
A.E. Housman (1859-1936) has written several poems that I especially like, and here is one of them. As a classicist, Housman gained renown for his editions of the Roman poets Juvenal, Lucan, and Manilius, as well as his meticulous and intelligent commentaries. This selection appeals to me because it is straightforward and easy to understand; the real world. The “Card Players” (1550) painting highlights the tension and competiveness that we humans may exhibit from time to time (!) and this is exposed, embellished, and then contrasted by Housman’s engaging verse. The insert painting “St Florian” (1473) works very well as a salve and allows some perspective around the angst of the card player circle. These elements (paintings and verse) were created centuries apart and yet the themes, very human, are as fresh and evident today as they were centuries ago. I hope you enjoy this poetry frame “When I was one and twenty”! BWEJ 2023
Painting; The Card Players; after Lucas van Leyden 1550-60; NGA1939.1.27 Poem by A.E. Housman (1859-1936) has written several poems that I especially like, and here is one of them. As a classicist, Housman gained renown for his editions of the Roman poets Juvenal, Lucan, and Manilius, as well as his meticulous and intelligent commentaries. This selection appeals to me because it is straightforward and easy to understand; the real world. The “Card Players” (1550) painting highlights the tension and competiveness that we humans may exhibit from time to time (!) and this is exposed, embellished, and then contrasted by Housman’s engaging verse. The insert painting “St Florian” (1473) works very well as a salve and allows some perspective around the angst of the card player circle. These elements (paintings and verse) were created centuries apart and yet the themes, very human, are as fresh and evident today as they were centuries ago.
October 2, 2023
“If” only I could adequately express the quality of authorship that is inherent in this, Rudyard Kipling’s masterpiece poem. This is top drawer Poetry, like the Shakespearean sonnets; a gift to English literature and poetry. Rather than saying too much more, I will leave it to you to experience this directly! I hope you enjoy this poetry frame; “If” by Rudyard Kipling!
I have chosen this poem because it reflects the tender passage of the moment…this anonymous fragment is hundreds of years old and yet it remains and surfaces in simple beauty. It is an example of a kind of irony in the passage of time; it is not granite or monumental but rather it is light as a feather, and yet continues to resonate with secret and persistent passage through centuries of time. The paintings are by Renoir. I hope you enjoy revisiting this tender moment from centuries ago… BWEJ 2023
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James Joyce; painting by Robert Amos
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Click on the image above to access the Gitanjali readings. Written by Rabindranath Tagore in the early part of the last century; Winner of the Nobel Prize for literature in 1913. The readings are accompanied with works by artist Henri van Bentum from his “Organiverse” set of 100 paintings in pointillism.
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Click on the image above to access Shakespeare Sonnets and selected readings
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Longfellow; click on image above
William Blake; Click on the image above…
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