Vanity Fea


jueves, 29 de agosto de 2013


Un poema de Edward Thomas en el que yo también me paré un momento.


Yes. I remember Adlestrop—
The name, because one afternoon
Of heat the express-train drew up there
Unwontedly. It was late June.

The steam hissed. Someone cleared his throat.
No one left and no one came
On the bare platform. What I saw
Was Adlestrop—only the name

And willows, willow-herb, and grass,
And meadowsweet, and haycocks dry,
No whit less still and lonely fair
Than the high cloudlets in the sky.

And for that minute a blackbird sang
Close by, and round him, mistier,
Farther and farther, all the birds
Of Oxfordshire and Gloucestershire.


Source: Poems (1917)

Aquí lo analizan. Tiene algo en común, una pequeña intersección, con L'Infinito de Leopardi:

Sempre caro mi fu quest'ermo colle,
E questa siepe, che da tanta parte
Dell'ultimo orizzonte il guardo esclude.
Ma sedendo e mirando, interminati      
Spazi di là da quella, e sovrumani
Silenzi, e profondissima quiete
Io nel pensier mi fingo; ove per poco
Il cor non si spaura. E come il vento
Odo stormir tra queste piante, io quello      
Infinito silenzio a questa voce
Vo comparando: e mi sovvien l'eterno,
E le morte stagioni, e la presente
E viva, e il suon di lei. Così tra questa
Immensità s'annega il pensier mio:      
E il naufragar m'è dolce in questo mare.

Vuelvo a encontrármelo, a Adlestrop, en esta conferencia sobre poesía inglesa, minuto 30:

Y en una conversación sobre poesía, entre la narradora y su amante (amante de la poesía), en la novela de Ian McEwan Sweet Tooth:

We stood in a corner of a basement of a second-hand bookshop in St Martin's Court, with an old hardback Collected Thomas opened by Tom for me at the right page.
    Obediently, I read it, and looked up. 'Very nice.'
    'You can't have read it in three seconds. Take it slowly.'
    There wasn't much to take. Four verses of four short lines. A train makes an unscheduled stop at an obscure station, no one gets on or off, someone coughs, a bird sings, it's hot, there are flowers and trees, hay drying in the fields and lots of other birds. And that was it.
    I closed the book and said, 'Beautiful.'
    His head was cocked and he was smiling patiently. 'You don't get it.'
    'Of course I do.'
    'Then tell it to me.'
    'What do you mean?'
    'Say it back to me, everything in it that you can remember.'
    So I told him all I knew, almost line by line, and even remembered the haycocks, cloudlets, willows and meadowsweet, as well as Oxfordshire and Gloucestershire. He seemed impressed and was looking at me oddly, as if he was making a discovery.
    He said, 'There's nothing wrong with your memory. Now try to remember the feelings.'
    We were the only customers downstairs in the shop and there were no windows and only two dim bulbs, without shades. There was a pleasant dusty soporific smell, as though the books had stolen most of the air.
    I said, 'I'm sure there isn't a single mention of a feeling.'
    'What's the first word of the poem?'
    'It goes, "Yes, I remember Adlestrop."'
    He came closer. 'The memory of a name and nothing else, the stillness, the beauty, the arbitrariness of the stop, birdsong spread out across two counties, the sense of pure existence, of being suspended in space and time, a time before a cataclysmic war.'
    I angled my head and his lips brushed mine. I said very quietly, 'The poem doesn't mention a war.'
    He took the book from my hands as we kissed (...)

Absence, Poetry, and Hindsight

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