May 5, 2011

e.e. cummings, "O sweet spontaneous"

In the backyard, this young squirrel would seem ho-hum daily fare. But in the woods, I felt as if I'd discovered the essence of squirreldom  (Independence Oaks, near Clarkston, Michigan).




Ditto the Tree Swallow pair; a purist might be put off by their being coaxed, trained, hoodwinked by that box. Not me. Except for cages, a nice bird is a nice bird.

"O sweet spontaneous" is one of the cummings poems I fell for in college, and I still like it. It's the best of both worlds; I don't have to admit to being a completely mindless sap in youth or a jaded, dessicated academic in the 21st century, too learned for such hormonal advocacy of the irrational. 

O sweet spontaneous - A poem by e.e. cummings - American Poems

14 comments:

Montanagirl said...

Thanks for visiting my blog! I answered some of your comments and questions back where you posted your comments. You have a nice blog.

Brenda's Arizona said...

Love this one in the way it leads you up to SPRING. The high order language, the feeling of a cathedral out there... and then realizing it, the cathedral, is spring.

Wow, nice photos, too!

Banjo52 said...

Montana, amazing bird photos at your place. I encourage others to take a look.

Brenda, sheer pantheism, that cummings boy! But I shouldn't make light of it--what better cathedral?

altadenahiker said...

Oh, good old e.e. For all his whimsey, he can cut to the chase.

Banjo52 said...

AH, maybe that's why I keep coming back to him.

And in this poem, I'm paying more attention to the word "spontaneous" as the contrast to operations that seem brainier, like philosophy and religion (and "the academy").

Brenda's Arizona said...

And then there is the alliteration: "prurient philosophies pinched
and poked"...
Coming early enough in the poem to make me wonder if this was going to be a joke on us.

Banjo52 said...

B, but it ends up as a joke on them, the pokers, the invaders, don't you think?

Paula said...

This poem reminds me that Spring is a conflicted season down our way but still, it always arrives and we're so very relieved.

Did you hear that there's a bill to eliminate the EPA?

Sarah Knight said...

Lovely : )

Pasadena Adjacent said...

Mother's day has me running in and out with an eye on a backyard nest. Silly birds built it on a flimsy vine tucked between the eves of my patio overhang. One baby is lying dead having avoided "flying the coop" in favor of "the big splat." Fate can be a mighty cruel poke, if you ask me.

Banjo52 said...

Sarah, thanks.

PA, no argument here. Also, I know why humans came up with "bird brain." But I find they're still a big lift, and it goes way beyond rationality.

Ken Mac said...

what is that critter in top frame?

Banjo52 said...

Paula, I think I did hear about the EPA. Well, we didn't need that environment anyway. It wasn't paying for itself. It was a charity case, a hardcore freeloader. (Hope everyone hears my tongue in my cheek).

Ken, a young squirrel, as far as I know--like your guy on city cement? City squirrel and country squirrel?

Banjo52 said...

Ken, as far as I know, it's "just" a young squirrel--in a somewhat natural setting rather than urban cement.

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