Saturday, March 19, 2022

Pushkin Had It Right




Caro’s blog yesterday inspired me to admit defeat.


If only Putin would do the same. God bless Ukraine and its fiercely brave people.


My defeat is of a different sort.  I’ve lost the fire to write the blog I intended—a parody of a poem titled “Napoleon” written two-hundred years ago by Russia’s most famous and celebrated poet, Alexander Pushkin.


The poem begins…


The wondrous destiny is ended,
The mighty light is quench’d and dead;
In storm and darkness hath descended
Napoleon’s sun, so bright and dread.
The captive King hath burst his prison—
The petted child of Victory;
And for the Exile hath arisen
The dawning of Posterity.


Change but a single word and it’s as if Pushkin were writing Putin’s epitaph.  But to take the parody further requires far more thought and energy than I care to spend focused on the soulless monster wreaking relentless catastrophic tragedy and despair upon the world.


Instead, I’m falling back on something I wrote ten years ago as a parody of Hamlet’s self-questioning To be, or not to be soliloquy that asks his famous “whether” question in its second line.  I thought, how aptly that post applies to my current state of mind over whether or not to write that Pushkin parody.

To blog, or not to blog--that is the question:

Whether 'tis nobler in the mind to suffer

In despair at most blogs’ outrageous fortune

Or to take pens against our shared troubles

And by exposing end them. To fly, to leap--

To soar—or do we creep away to end

The headache, and the thousand natural blocks

That publish is heir to. 'Tis a consternation

Devoutly to be wished on others.  Weep--

Perchance even scream: But at the very nub

Of a possible death to the dream of some

Is why we suffer at this mortal toil.

Let us pause. There's the respect

That is the balm to a long writing life.

For who would bear the ups and downs of time,

Th' reviewer's wrong and downright contumely,

The pangs of edited work, the pub delay,

The insolence of the press, and its spurns

Showing patient merit worthy of a saint,

When he or she might quiet exit take

To make a living?  Who would deadlines bear,

To grunt and sweat a solitary life,

But that the dread of giving no more breadth

To all those undiscovered thoughts that churn

Our traveling minds, and puzzle our will,

Would make us far more ill by half

Than denying readers what they know not of?

Dedication makes writers of us all,

And a simpler life of remuneration

Is sacrificed to one of words and thought.

Any enterprise giving pitch and moment

To our words, even if currently awry,

We can’t lose in the name of no action.  

So now fair Colleagues, bring on opinions

That our blog be long remembered.





No comments:

Post a Comment