Tuesday, December 11, 2012

News at Eleven: One stanza [of Robert Hass' poem] ends

with the line "here filthy life begins" (read the full poem below). When I inquired why he had imparted such darkness to a poem about a boy gone fishing, he said the poem arose from the tension between vitality and death. The tide was the shade of decomposition, and by calling life filthy, he meant that the boy was grappling with the twisted notion that life arises from killing.

Paraphrasing American writer and mythologist Joseph Campbell, he added, "The origin of art is in the shock of the food chain."

On the Coast near Sausalito

from News Scientist: E. O. Wilson and poet laureate on altruism and mystery


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