Here's something I don't understand. Spender tells the story that the first time he read Eliot's Four Quartets he thought he could hear Beethoven's late Four Quartets for strings. He mentioned it to Eliot. The poet confessed he had been listening to them when he wrote the poetry. Often I hear poets ask each other what music they like listening to when they are writing? Answers always enthusiastic and forthcoming.
This puzzles me. I think how can I hear the music in my head if I don't have quiet? How can I hear my line rhythms, cadences, metrical stress and pause, just all the roving syllable carried music in the language if my space is not free of the music of others? Poetry is a matter of sound and sense it seems to me. With rhythm I seduce, invite my reader in a sense shared. I don't know. Maybe I should have staid with the trumpet. But I do love certain tonalities found in language, certainly in the English language.
Jul/27/2013, 1:21 pm
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