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bear by san

March 2017

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bear by san

Book keeping

Wordcount: 2368 on Stratford Man, two scenes total.
Reason for stopping: Bedtime

I've started reading Coyote Wind by Peter Bowen, which is a very odd book. The style--intentionally ungrammatical, SoC, lots of comma splices and so forth--takes a while to get used to.

But boy, he's got some lovely salient things to say about life.

It's been a while since I quoted, so here's a long one:

***

A sight as banefull to their soules I think
As are Thessalian drugs or Mithradate.
But goe my Lords, put the rest tothe sword.
Exeunt. [Manet Tamburlaine.]
Ah faire Zenocrate, divine Zenocrate,
Faire is too foule an Epithite for thee,
That in thy passion for thy countries love,
And feare to see thy kingly Fathers harme,
With haire discheweld wip'st thy watery cheeks:
And like to Flora in her mornings pride,
Shaking her silver tresses in the aire,
Rain'st on the earth resolved pearle in showers,
And sprinklest Saphyrs on thy shining face,
Wher Beauty, mother tothe Muses sits,
And comments vollumes with her Ivory pen:
Taking instructions from thy flowing eies,
Eies when that Ebena steps to heaven,
In silence of thy solemn Evenings walk,
Making the mantle of the richest night,
The Moone, the Planets, and the Meteors light.
There Angels in their christal armours fight
A doubtfull battell with my tempted thoughtes,
For Egypts freedom and the Souldans life:
His life that so consumes Zenocrate,
Whose sorrowes lay more siege unto my soule,
Than all my Army to Damascus walles.
And neither Perseans Soveraign, nor the Turk
Troubled my sences with conceit of foile,
So much by much, as dooth Zenocrate
What is beauty, saith my sufferings then?
If all the pens that ever poets held,
Had fed the feeling of their maisters thoughts,
And every sweetnes that inspir'd their harts,
Their minds, and muses on admyred theames:
If all the heavenly Quintessence they still
From their immortall flowers of Poesy,
Wherein as in a myrrour we perceive
The highest reaches of a humaine wit:
If these had made one Poems period
And all combin'd in Beauties worthinesse,
Yet should ther hover in their restlesse heads,
One thought, one grace, one woonder at the least,
Which into words no vertue can digest:
But how unseemly is it for my Sex,
My discipline of armes and Chivalrie,
My nature and the terrour of my name,
To harbour thoughts effeminate and faint?
Save onely that in Beauties just applause,
With whose instinct the soule of man is toucht,
And every warriour that is rapt with love
Of fame, of valour, and of victory,
Must needs have beauty beat on his conceites.
I thus conceiving and subduing both:
That which hath stoopt the tempest of the Gods,
Even from the fiery spangled vaile of heaven,
To feele the lovely warmth of shepheards flames,
And martch in cottages of strowed weeds:
Shal give the world to note, for all my byrth,
That Vertue solely is the sum of glorie,
And fashions men with true nobility.
Who's within there?

-- Christopher Marlowe, Tamburlaine the Great, Act V, Scene i




Damn, that boy could really write pretty good, couldn't he?

Comments


that boy could really write pretty good, couldn't he?

H'mmmm. Indeed. Have you ever read Mary Gentle's Left to his Own Devices? Interesting ideas, but she doesn't do poor Kit justice.

Never even--

Heard of it. I liked her Golden Witchbreed, haven't managed to get through anything else of hers I've poked at (Ancient Light and Grunts.

If you wanted to spoiler me on it, I'd be grateful.

Re: Never even--

Okay, 'Grunts' remains in my brain almost entirely for a very very funny line -- Pass me another, this one's split -- which only becomes totally unrepeatable in context ::grins:: It's one of those -- the book kind of fades, but that line stays golden -- things.

Re: Never even--

It's near-future SF structured like a Jacobean tragedy--one of the 'White Crow' books featuring Valentine and Casaubon. Prominent feature, an Artificial Unconscious which occasionally looks like Kit Marlowe, and recasts the story going on around it into a play written (supposedly) in his language and style.

Gentle's ideas are good and her characters are great, but she's not as good as she thinks she is at Jacobean blank verse.

I was the opposite to you: I was bored by Golden Witchbreed, but loved
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It's near-future SF structured like a Jacobean tragedy--one of the 'White Crow' books featuring Valentine and Casaubon. Prominent feature, an Artificial Unconscious which occasionally looks like Kit Marlowe, and recasts the story going on around it into a play written (supposedly) in his language and style.

Gentle's ideas are good and her characters are great, but she's not as good as she thinks she is at Jacobean blank verse.

I was the opposite to you: I was bored by <i>Golden Witchbreed</i>, but loved <Ancient Light</i>. <i>Grunts</i> bothers me, except for the scene with the Orcs masquerading as eighteenth-century wits. I did, however, fall heavily for <i>The Architecture of Desire</i>...

Re: Never even--

Hmm. Maybe I will look into those. They sound interesting, at least.

Re: Never even--

Interesting is exactly the word. And the White Crow books have just been republished in an omnibus edition--it even has the short stories and Black Motley, a semi-connected novella, in it--so getting hold of them is relatively easy for the first time in a long time...
He could write good, all right. I'll have to do some Elizabethan reading in the holidays.

Do you have any favourites in particular?
Other than Kit and Will? My bias is evident, I think. *g* But then, I also feel safe in saying that they're head and shoulders above the rest.

truepenny is fond of Chapman, I believe. And I have a personal weakness for Spenser and for Raleigh, on the poetical side. And Nashe wrote a very dirty, very funny long poem that will turn up easily if you google his name.
Will check out. Thanks! :)

Reading

You seem to be doing a lot lately. Good for you. But take a break every once in a while, huh ?

Re: Reading

can't--give--up.

can't--pass-out.

*g*

Thanks for the crit, by the way.... I misplaced your new email again. :-P
That is a fine quote. Good way to start the day. Thanks!