Per Lance's suggestion, let's get our culture on!

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Bryan, Mar 27, 2008.

  1. Bryan

    Bryan ΜΟΛΩΝ ΛΑΒΕ

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    Poetry-wise, that is. It might only last a dozen posts, but whatever.

    I prefer the classics, mostly the pretty straightforward stuff. My favorites poets are Frost and Stephen Crane. The latter is better known for "Red Badge of Courage," but man, his lines are amazing.

    Big fan of epic poetry also--The Illiad and The Rime of the Ancient Mariner especially.

    A few miscellaneous favorites are Robinson's "Richard Cory," Shelley's "Ozymandias," and Ehrmann's (?) "Desiderata."

    But my all-time favorite is definitely Kipling's "Tommy." Gotta repost it here:
    More'n a hundred years old, but it's rung true since then--and before as well, I'm sure. And I love it.
     
  2. Jeremy.B

    Jeremy.B Formerly Leader Blackout TFW2005 Supporter

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    My favorite writer by far is Hemingway. Great visualist, and had a "flavor" that is hard to imitate. However, one of my favorite poems, long before the crap movies that were made. The original Beowulf was phenomenal. The first part, translated from Old English:

    EDIT: Yeah, that was tooooo long. Here is the link: http://www.lone-star.net/literature/beowulf/beowulf.html

    And like SQ, I am digging the old epic poems lke the illiad. And although I prefer novels and stories, I respect good poetry.
     
  3. Bryan

    Bryan ΜΟΛΩΝ ΛΑΒΕ

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    Beowulf was indeed excellent--I have the translation by Seamus Heaney, I'd recommend it to anyone.

    And afterwards, you gotta read Grendel. Clever modern follow-up.
     
  4. Gnaw

    Gnaw Banned

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    You can have your army Kakhis
    And your navy blues,
    Her's a different sort of fighting man,
    I'll introduce to you.

    His uniform is unlike
    Any you've ever seen;
    And the Germans called him Devil Dog,
    But his real name is Marine!

    He was born on Parris Island (San Diego or the Hills of Quantico)
    The land that God forgot.
    The sand was 14 inches deep,
    the sun was blazing hot.

    He'd get up every morning,
    Way before the sun,
    And he'd run a hundred miles or more,
    Before the day was done.

    He fought in the cold of Korea,
    In the heat of Viet Nam.
    When ever our country goes to war,
    The Marines are first to land.
    We'll fight them on the ground,
    We'll fight them in the sky,
    When the Army and Navy are heading home,
    The Marines are standing by.

    And when he get to heaven,
    St. Peter he will tell,
    "Another Marine reporting, Sir,
    I've served my time in Hell!"
    -- Hal Popplewell; USMC 1971 - 1979
     
  5. General Magnus

    General Magnus Da Custodes of the Emprah

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    Always liked this parable:

    “The Scorpion and the Frog”

    Up in the mountains, not so very long ago, there lived a scorpion. He grew up in a beautiful forest, where his ancestors had lived for generations before him. One day, however, the scorpion grew tired of his old home and went in search of someplace new.

    The scorpion set off through the forest, and he traveled a great distance on his eight legs. Eventually, though, his path was blocked by a deep and swift-moving stream. Seeing no way across, no matter how far up or down the stream he walked, he came back and stood for a long while pondering his situation.

    As he stood there, along came a frog and the scorpion found the answer to his dilemma. The frog, seeing the scorpion waiting by the bank, approached cautiously.

    “Hello there, Mr. Frog!” called the scorpion in greeting. When the frog did not respond, the scorpion pressed on.

    “Might you be about to cross the stream?” he asked the frog politely.

    Still wary of the scorpion, the frog answered, “Well, Mr. Scorpion, I will be, as soon as that stork, who is waiting on the other side to eat me, leaves. Why do you ask?”

    “Well, as it happens, I too need to get across this stream. But as you can see,” the scorpion explained, “I am a scorpion and therefore I cannot swim. Would you be so kind as to carry me across on your back?”

    The frog looked sidelong at the scorpion for a moment then asked, “And why should I do that?”

    “Well,” the scorpion answered easily. “I cannot cross by myself – that much is clear. And you cannot cross as long as that stork,” he reasoned, pointing across the stream at the bird, “stands waiting to snap you up as you climb out of the water.”

    The frog could not argue that, as long the stork stood on the opposite bank, he was as stuck as the scorpion.

    “If you carry me across,” the scorpion went on, “when we get to the other side, I will scare the bird away and you can climb safely to the bank and be on your way.”

    The frog thought for a moment. “How do I know you won’t try to sting me when I get close to you?” he asked.

    “Why would I do such a thing? If I sting you now, I will have no way across the stream. And if I stung you out on the water, I would certainly drown,” the scorpion relied.

    “And once we get to the other side?” the frog prompted, still not convinced.

    “Well, once you carried me across the stream, I would be so grateful to you, why would I then reward your kindness with death?” the scorpion argued.

    The frog, being a good-natured fellow, found that argument to be perfectly reasonable, and so he agreed to carry the scorpion across the stream. Slipping easily into the water, he waited as his passenger climbed onto his back.

    “Hold on tightly,” the frog warned. “The current is swift.”

    And with that, the frog struck off, kicking his powerful legs and swimming easily across the river. About halfway across, the frog suddenly felt a sharp pain in his back. The frog turned his head in time to see the scorpion pull his stinger out of the amphibian’s back. The frog’s limbs quickly began to go numb as the poison spread through his body.

    “Why did you do that?” the frog, dying, managed to croak. “Now we will both drown!”

    “I could not help myself,” the scorpion said with a shrug. “I am a scorpion… it is in my nature.”
     
  6. Ops_was_a_truck

    Ops_was_a_truck JOOOLIE ANDREWWWWWS!!!!!!

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    Shakespeare's Sonnet 2 and 31 are some of my favorites.

    I know it's ridiculously long, but I think Paradise Lost is a fantastic piece of poetry.

    Also, The Miller's Tale from Canturbury Tales is awesome because it's the 1600s-era version Farrelly Brothers humor, ripe with farts and kissing buttholes and duping idiots and etc.

    I can't remember the name of Alexander Pope's satire poetry works, but I remember them being really funny. He had such an eloquent, sarcastic tone.

    I always liked fiction a bit more than I liked prose, though. My personal favorites are Heart of Darkness, Biography of An Invisible Man and most of Hemingway's stuff.

    On the flip side, I found On the Road to be really boring because I kept thinking "...get on with it!" during the whole story.

    ...and anything by Ray Bradbury and Arthur C. Clarke = worlds of win.

    Oh, and Lance suggested that I read Fitzpatrick's War about 2-3 years back. That book is now part of my "never get rid of this book" collection. It was FAN-FUCKING-TASTIC. Incredible piece of steampunk fiction.
     
  7. Deceptikitty

    Deceptikitty all about the hasubandos

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    Delicious poetry. I need to read more, but I do have favorites.

    I LOVE Robinson's "Richard Cory".

    I also loves me some Sylvia Plath, though. She was emo before emo existed. My personal favorite:

     
  8. Chaos Muffin

    Chaos Muffin Misadventure Veteran

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    Here's one Ive been hearing alot lately, thanks to the kid-
    (damnit)


    Who lives in a pineapple under the sea?

    Kids: SpongeBob SquarePants!

    Captain: Absorbent and yellow and pourous is he!

    Kids: SpongeBob SquarePants!

    Captain: If nautical nonsense be something you wish,

    Kids: SpongeBob SquarePants!

    Captain: Then drop on the deck and flop like a fish!

    Kids: SpongeBob SquarePants!

    Captain: Ready?

    Captain and Kids: SpongeBob SquarePants, SpongeBob SquarePants,
    SpongeBob SquarePants!

    Captain: SpongeBob SquarePaaaaannttss!!!

    Captain: HA HA HA HA !!!!
     
  9. Bryan

    Bryan ΜΟΛΩΝ ΛΑΒΕ

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    Next time I hitch the East Coast, I'm stopping to drink and talk literature.

    Fitzpatrick's War was extraordinary--Lance and I talked about what a great film it would make a while back. Bradbury and Clarke equally so, although I'm a little partial to Heinlein and Asimov.

    And I just got my ass jumped on another forum for saying the exact same thing about On The Road. I think I get what he doing, it's just that once I had it, I didn't want it.

    Paradise Lost is great, but I'm partial to Inferno.

    But! Lance called me on it today, so I'll pass it along to feel smart--prose = books, etc., while verse = poetry. Now we know!
     
  10. Vector Sigma

    Vector Sigma <b><i><font color=FFFF00>Crazy Colon Burner!!!!</b Veteran

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    The Raven - Edgar Allen Poe

    Without a doubt my favourite poem, but far too long to repost here...
     
  11. Erector

    Erector I ruined the Hall of Fame

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    I'm a big fan of classical epic poems. Homer etc. Favourite by a mile is Virgil's Aeneid, I studied Latin at school and thought this was awesome. Thoroughly recommend checking it out, in translation at least. You can probably find a legal copy of the net somewhere even!
     
  12. MegaPrime33

    MegaPrime33 Follow me @NerdActivist TFW2005 Supporter

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    Ode on a Grecian Urn by John Keats.

    Thou still unravish'd bride of quietness,
    Thou foster-child of silence and slow time,
    Sylvan historian, who canst thou express
    A flowery tale more sweetly than our rhyme:
    What leaf-fring'd legend haunt about thy shape
    Of deities or mortals, or of both,
    In Tempe or the dales of Arcady?
    What men or gods are these? What maidens loth?
    What mad pursuit? What struggle to escape?
    What pipes and timbrels? What wild ecstasy?

    Heard melodies are sweet, but those unheard
    Are sweeter: therefore, ye soft pipes, play on;
    Not to the sensual ear, but, more endear'd,
    Pipe to the spirit ditties of no tone:
    Fair youth, beneath the trees, thou canst not leave
    Thy song, nor ever can those trees be bare;
    Bold lover, never, never canst thou kiss,
    Though winning near the goal - yet, do not grieve;
    She cannot fade, though thou hast not thy bliss,
    For ever wilt thou love, and she be fair!

    Ah, happy, happy boughs! that cannot shed
    Your leaves, nor ever bid the spring adieu;
    And, happy melodist, unwearied,
    For ever piping songs for ever new;
    More happy love! more happy, happy love!
    For ever warm and still to be enjoy'd,
    For ever panting, and for ever young;
    All breathing human passion far above,
    That leaves a heart high-sorrowful and cloy'd,
    A burning forehead, and a parching tongue.

    Who are these coming to the sacrifice?
    To what green altar, O mysterious priest,
    Lead'st thou that heifer lowing at the skies,
    And all her silken flanks with garlands drest?
    What little town by river or sea shore,
    Or mountain-built with peaceful citadel,
    Is emptied of this folk, this pious morn?
    And, little town, thy streets for evermore
    Will silent be; and not a soul to tell
    Why thou art desolate, can e'er return.

    O Attic shape! Fair attitude! with brede
    Of marble men and maidens overwrought,
    With forest branches and the trodden weed;
    Thou, silent form, dost tease us out of thought
    As doth eternity: Cold Pastoral!
    When old age shall this generation waste,
    Thou shalt remain, in midst of other woe
    Than ours, a friend to man, to whom thou say'st,
    "Beauty is truth, truth beauty," - that is all
    Ye know on earth, and all ye need to know.
     
  13. Jeremy.B

    Jeremy.B Formerly Leader Blackout TFW2005 Supporter

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    Good call. I forgot I read Grendel in HS. I am always fascinated at a story told from another POV. They are both classics in their own right.

    If we are expounding beyond poetry, I highly recommend "The Snows of Kilimanjaro". Probably my favorite story ever; tragic, clever, and beautiful.
    Plus, gotta have respect for a guy who got trashed of scotch and drove his boat around shooting at german submarines...that weren't there...
     
  14. Jeremy.B

    Jeremy.B Formerly Leader Blackout TFW2005 Supporter

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    I also loved Paradise Lost. Exestential!
     
  15. Lance Halberd

    Lance Halberd oh hai

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    I can't wait for Fitzpatrick's War's prequel, Tri Ogalala, which is rumored to chronicle the fall of the US, and the rise of Bartholomew Iz and the Yukon Confederacy.

    To be honest, I'm not a huge, huge fan of poetry, but I do have a few favorites. Erhmann's Desiderata, Milton's Paradise Lost, Schiller's Ode to Joy (mainly because I tend to sing Beethoven's arrangement loudly in German), and McCrae's In Flanders Fields are at the top of the list. About five years ago I started on Dante's Divine Comedy but only got through the Inferno and gave up a few terraces into Purgatorio because I realized I would never fully understand it as Dante's biting social commentaries of the day were completely lost on me.
     
  16. Sol Fury

    Sol Fury The British Butcher Administrator News Staff

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    Yay, someone else who likes the Aeneid! I did a Master's degree in it (have yet to find a job that makes use of that... unique talent).

    I like all the classical mythology, though. The Iliad is a great poem. So is the Argonautica.
     
  17. Spartan Prime

    Spartan Prime is an apathetic douchebag

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    I write poetry once in a while, so I try to get a lot of it in my system, but the most awe-inspiring tale I think I ever read was recently, while I was in Japan, I started playing MERP's with my wife and a cool group of guys there. Matt, the resident historian, laid this out for us:

    The breakdown: Middle Earth, Some badass elf named Fingolfin marches straight up to the Gates of the enemy, Morgoth, and calls him out. Not one to be punked, Morgoth faces off with him, and being a elf against something akin to a dark God, Fingolfin still manages to hold his own for a good while, giving Morgoth wounds he never fully heals from.

    "Show thy face" became the rallying cry for our parties.
     
  18. Dark_Convoy

    Dark_Convoy Old Bastard Veteran

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    I don't read much poetry. but I write my own.
     
  19. Bryan

    Bryan ΜΟΛΩΝ ΛΑΒΕ

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    And...?

    Spartan Prime manned up, so I know you can post something!
     
  20. Dark_Convoy

    Dark_Convoy Old Bastard Veteran

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    The world is a dot
    It's just a matter of time
    Pac-Man will eat it
     

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