01 November 2007


I spent a number of very fruitless hours wrestling with a computer system several weeks ago. Basically, I was trying to see whether the new dividend scale would crash our system or not (the answer was yes it would -- surprise, surprise, surprise).

While waiting for the system to cycle forward (a process that takes anywhere between 30 seconds and three minutes per transaction), I tried my hand at some extemporaneous poetry. I had been reading Madam Murasaki's Tale of Genji that week, and I was curious about what kind of poetry I would be able to compose at a moment's notice, since that is one of the things Genji is so renowned for (besides being indescribably beautiful and unfaithful to every one of his innumerable paramours, but that is beside the point).

It's kind of tricky, because most of the poetry is highly allusive and layered with naturalistic images, and I am familiar with neither Japanese poetry nor Japanese nature imagery. I did, however, make my poems two lines long, which is more or less what Genji does in the novel, too. So that's something, anyway.

Here are a couple of the poems I came up with between cycles. Please note that they are not very good.

Waning, cloud-cloaked rays of sunlight, dim at day's end,
Promise that tomorrow will hold sufficient troubles of its own.

Squirrels scuttling through overgrown grass-
Neglected lawn teems with life.


Anonymous said...

Fun stuff...though that does seem an awfully positive take on squirrels for you.

By the way, have you seen that video on Teh Internets of the squirrel that chews through a telephone wire, catches fire, and destroys a car? It's pretty sweet.

luaphacim said...

Yeah, the problem is that ancient Japanese court poetry really had a pretty positive view of nature, so I couldn't justify inserting my personal views of squirrels into this particular piece. :-)

I totally need to see that video. 8-|

Anonymous said...

I was wondering the same thing as EB. You can't be softening to Squirrels, can you?

-Mrs. Luaphacim