Monday, December 30, 2013

Turn back regards

Yosemite, 2012

from Don Juan

Canto XIV

The world is all before meor behind;
       For I have seen a portion of that same,
And quite enough for me to keep in mind;
       Of passions, too, I have proved enough to blame,
To the great pleasure of our friends, mankind,
       Who like to mix some slight alloy with fame;
For I was rather famous in my time,
Until I fairly knock'd it up with rhyme.

I have brought this world about my ears, and eke
       The other; that's to say, the clergy, who
Upon my head have bid their thunders break
        In pious libels by no means a few.
And yet I can't help scribbling once a week,
        Tiring old readers, nor discovering new.
In youth I wrote because my mind was full,
And now because I feel it growing dull.

But 'why then publish?'There are no rewards
        Of fame or profit when the world grows weary.
I ask in turn,Why do you play at cards?
        Why drink? Why read?To make some hour less dreary.
It occupies me to turn back regards
        On what I've seen or ponder'd, sad or cheery;
And what I write I cast upon the stream,
To swim or sinkI have had at least my dream.

George Gordon, Lord Byron


  1. I've been having a lot of these same thoughts. I guess they are eternal thoughts, right?
    Write because we must, then throw it out there to sink or swim. Whichever.
    It has to be the doing of the art which sustains us, I suppose.



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