Sunday, November 28, 2010

To be or not to be.....

Snowy Woods from Red Bird Knits
The phrase is perhaps a little trite, even though it comes from one of the greatest plays (Hamlet) written by one of the greatest writers (Shakespeare) of all time. Perhaps we have said it too many times. Maybe that's because this soliloquy was one of the few that we had actually memorized or maybe we hadn't memorized it, but others had, and said the opening lines to us and all we know, then, are the first few lines. This situation may be about to change.

Let me quote from Wednesday's paper, "The Griffin Trust for Excellence in Poetry, which already funds one of the world's most lucrative prizes for writers of verse, is looking to cultivate a new generation of poetry lovers." The trust, whose founder is Torontonian, Steve Griffin, is launching a bilingual poetry recitation contest in high schools with the winning student receiving $5,000.00 at the finals in April.  Hurray!

Finally recognition for the value of memorizing poetry, which I feel, not only builds our memory muscle, but also gives us something beautiful to say at a moment's notice! I use poetry as the inspiration for a lot of my lace designs and I know that other designers do as well. Here are two designs from the same poem by Robert Frost, "Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening." The last lines of this poem were immortalized by JFK in one of his famous speeches - "But I have promises to keep and miles to go before I sleep, And miles to go before I sleep."

Snowy Evening Shawl from Queen Anne's Lace
I remember being in awe one day when I took the subway downtown. I hadn't ridden the rocket in a while, so I was amazed to see, when I stepped into one of the trains, that all the advertising had been replaced by poems - real poems - both old and new. It was a project from the University of Toronto's literary department. I wish this would happen more often!

I would love to escape from the subway to Innisfree, to see Pied Beauty everywhere or to hear Jabberwocky once more.

Dinner tonight? Something  poetic - well this is a link to another weblog that is very rich in art, poetry and music and it does have a recipe. Maybe it's not enough for dinner; but add a bit to it - they serve it with deep fried turkey - or just decide to be thin; but interesting, like a good poet - "they also serve who only stand and wait."

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