Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Kubla Khan Response

I cannot decide if Kubla Khan could be about how some parts of nature are good and some parts are bad or if it is more about religion, God vs. the Devil. It could be about nature being good and bad because in some parts it talks about trees and the sea, which seem like they are good, then it talks about shadows and ice, which seem like they are bad. The reason I think this is because of how Coleridge describes the different scenes of nature is very detailed it is like I am standing there looking at everything. It is also like he is painting a picture with words to tell a blind person what is around them so that they can see their surroundings which makes it seem very real. But then it talks about a woman, Coleridge narrates this section, and he sees himself in the poem, which could be like God, then more towards the end of the poem it talks about a man and how we should beware of him with, “His flashing eyes, his floating hair!” which could be like the Devil. Also when it says, “By woman wailing for her demon-lover!” could also be like the Devil because of the demon part. When it says, “For he on honey-dew hath fed, and drunk the milk of Paradise,” which could be like Adam and Eve with the forbidden fruit. Or maybe the nature and religion go hand in hand like Shovel and Pail from Blue’s Clues and I am just not quite getting the connection between the two of them.
Overall I thought that this was an interesting poem to read since it does not make sense to me I was made to think more and look deeper into it to try and find the meaning. Compared to Rhyme of the Ancient Mariner I think I like this one more because it is more of a visual poem and it is not extremely long so I stayed more focused on what was being said instead of just trying to read it to be done with it.

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Two Thumbs Up For This Blog!

Here I’ll be exploring a great blog site name Different Perspectives on Samuel Coleridge’s Poetry made by Amanda, Yev and Stephan and Henley
Click here to go straight to the site: Blog Site!

This blog did a wonderful job explaining Coleridge works and his life. I liked how they had a biography part about Coleridge so someone who didn’t know who he was would be able to get a better understanding of this poet. 
There are some really cool icons of a spinning globe on this blog that I thought was a plus! I enjoyed looking at the picture because it helped me comprehend the content of the post both visually and mentally. The title of each post captivates you to read it. They are very creative with their title choices. 
I liked how they break down some of Coleridge’s well known poem then explains the meaning of them. They have interesting information not just on Coleridge’s poems but fun miscellaneous facts about him too. It helps keep the reader interested. I like the video of the spoken version of Kubla Khan. 
The background is simple yet easy to navigate. The font is easy to read and it doesn’t get washed out by the background. There was nothing too overly dramatic that would be annoying to the reader. Everything is clear and understandable. The title of the blog ‘Different Perspectives on Samuel Coleridge’s Poetry’ is concise and explains exactly what they will be talking about. The purpose of the blog is clear. The contents are accurate and credible. 
After visiting the blog I have learned several new information about Coleridge that I never knew before. The Christabel story that Yevgeniy talked about made me very interested in reading it myself.  I found Henley's post on ‘the type who write in sleep’ a very amusing read. I didn’t notice till now that the poem Kubla Khan resembles so much like an act of sex. All of the blog members did a great job providing information on Samuel Coleridge. This is a wonderful site to check out if you don’t know or want to learn more about who Coleridge was.

Samuel Coleridge's Life

           Samuel T. Coleridge was born in 1772 in Ottery St. Mary, Devonshire. He was the youngest out of 10 kids and his parents, John Coleridge and Ann Bowdon, loved him very much. Coleridge liked his childhood and started reading books as early as six years old. Coleridge went off to Christ’s Hospital School, which was in London, after his dad died. After being at school for awhile he left in 1793 to join the 15th Light Dragoons because he had a large amount of debt that needed to get paid off and he was leaving behind a bad relationship. When Coleridge joined the 15th Light Dragoons he enlisted under a different name, Silias Tomkin Comberbache. But soon after he enlisted he found that he did not fit in and people started saying that he was insane.
            In 1795 he married Sara Fricker even though he didn’t love her. His collection of Poems on Various Subjects was published in 1796 and in 1797 Poems was published. Also in 1797 he met William Wordsworth and Wordsworth’s wife, Dorothy, and became very good friends with them. After becoming friends with Wordsworth they both wrote the Lyrical Ballads that started with “Rime of the Ancient Mariner”. It is said that this ballad was based on Captain James Cook’s voyage from 1772 to 1775. Coleridge was given 150 pounds from Josiah and Thomas Wedgewood which started his career. From 1798 to 1799 Wordsworth, Dorothy, and Coleridge went to Germany where Coleridge studied at Gottingen University. In 1799 Coleridge met Sara Hutchinson and fell in love with her.
            Coleridge had become addicted to opium because that would take away his neuralgic and rheumatic pains. In 1804 he took a trip to Malta to find a better way to deal with his problems instead of being on opium. He stayed in Malta for awhile and then returned to England. Sara Hutchinson and Coleridge wrote and edited the magazine The Friend in 1809 to 1810. In 1808-1818 he gave a few lectures in London. Coleridge’s friendship he had with Wordsworth became very unsteady in 1810; unfortunately they never completely rekindled their once great friendship. Not that long after Wordsworth and Coleridge’s friendship dwindled down to nothing Coleridge was thinking of suicide. In 1816 Christabel and Kubla Khan were published. Coleridge died on July 25, 1834 in Highgate, which is near London.

Quotes and Explainations.

In the following text I will provide some quotes that Samuel Taylor Coleridge spoke. I will also be explaining what I believe each quote means and how it is important and beneficial to live by this advice.
1.       “Alas! they had been friends in youth; but whispering tongues can poison truth.”
I’m sure that every high schooler has been in some sort of drama or fight that a rumor played a great part of. And rumors can harm great friendships and do a lot of damage to people. If you have ever heard a rumor about you I would bet that it didn’t make you feel very good about yourself and probably made you feel worse if someone you thought was your friend actually believed the things that were being said about you. You feel like they should know you better than that right? What Coleridge is saying in this quote is that rumors hurt. And even though you’re not the one who “started it” just by listening and talking about it with others makes you just as guilty as the person who did start the lies. It is important in life for you to learn that not everything you hear is the truth. And you need to rely solely on your own judgment of the person. Don’t judge a book by its cover.

2.       “A man's desire is for the woman, but the woman's desire is rarely other than for the desire of the man.”
Dear Women, the meaning of life is not to be the hottest most wanted person in the world. When you meet your creator (who ever that may be) do you think that they care about how many people desired you in your life? Do you think that your future husband or children care about that? The correct answer would be no. I walk the halls of my high school and see a bunch of young girls with obviously no self-respect. Or clothes for that matter. What Coleridge is saying is that there is more to life then getting attention from the opposite sex. You only have one life so live it to the fullest. Don’t worry about what people think of you, it only matters what you think of yourself. This is a highly beneficial skill to learn because you want to be able to be independent and you must learn to love yourself. Confidence and respct for yourself is what gets you a good man.

Science vs Nature

“To sentence a man of true genius to the drudgery of a school is to put a racehorse on a treadmill,” is a quote by Samuel T. Coleridge. This quote shows how the Romantic poets, not just Coleridge, thought that science over nature would never let people reach their full potential. Meaning that if you put an extremely smart man in a school then he would never be allowed to expand his knowledge past the curriculum in which he was appointed to. He could never reach his full potential as a person, in knowledge, just like if someone was to put a racehorse on a treadmill. If someone was to put a racehorse on a treadmill then it will only be able to go as fast as the treadmill would let it, never being able to reach the speed it is capable of, making the horse useless. But if the horse were to be taken the off the treadmill and just let it run on its own then it would be able to reach astronomical speeds, which would fulfill what it was made for and reach its full potential as a racehorse. If the man was not sentenced to go to school then he would be able to explore and understand things at a much more deeper level without having the school’s curriculum holding him back or pulling him down.  Also he would reach his full potential as a person and be able to contribute to society more than other people could because he has gotten to the point where he can use his knowledge to become more helpful.
This quote can also show how Coleridge thought that science was less important compared to nature. The racehorse represents nature and the treadmill represents science, if the racehorse is never put on the treadmill, in other words nature is not involved with science, then it can run at a higher pace than its fellow competitors. To relate this to the man and school is simple, the man is like the racehorse and the school is like the treadmill. If the man is not involved with school then he can explore things at his own pace to get a better and deeper understanding of things.

The Best of Blake

The Best of Blake by Becca Gaulke, Kendal Kern, and Pang Thao was the blog I decided to take a deeper look at instead of just browsing through it like I did with the rest of the blogs. What I found the most interesting was how their blog had a nice background and a good layout which made the blog easy to read. I liked how the posts didn’t seem boring enough that I felt like falling asleep or scrolling to the bottom of the page right away to see if it was even going to be worth my time. I also like that when one of them would talk about a quote they didn’t just put the quote and start writing they made the quote slide across the screen which made it easier to read and it caught my eye; it was like a big arrow that said read me! Also the quotes that they have on there are kind of catchy and interesting to think about. Also the quotes are very relatable to real life. Becca talked about a quote by Blake, “Do what you will, this world’s a fiction and is made up of contradiction,” and it really got my attention the most because her interpretation of it is really good. Also I feel that, after reading her interpretation, it describes Blake very well, which would help someone who doesn’t know anything about him understand what he was all about. Although none of them talked about one video that they put up it was still entertaining to watch. The video was a poem animation of “The Tiger” which was both interesting and creepy. It was interesting to see a picture of Blake recite his own poem even long after he has been dead. But yet it was also creepy because it reminded me of something that would be considered “evil” out of a Disney movie like Snow White or something. I would recommend this blog to someone who doesn’t know anything about Romanticism because it has a nice layout that could appeal to that person’s tastes and it is very informative.

Melting Possibilities, A Prose Poem

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Above I have included a play list for the song Woods by Bon Iver, it's what inspired this piece. Enjoy.

I need this old dream to break down.

I need to understand the colors and the rhythm of my subconscious mind. How can I put together the pieces, to make them fit into a reality? Will my reality and my dreams exist within the same realm of possibilities, or do they have separate lives.
One is experiencing the shades of colors I never knew I could understand.
It’s painted with aqua blues as deep as the ocean of your eyes. And reds that fire wishes they could burn. In my dreams I see perfection melted within chaos.
It’s beautiful.
I can run on grass that surpasses skyscrapers, I can breathe in water and feel fuller of life than I did when I breathed in air. I’ll never leave.
Until the cold chill of life creeps back into the frontal lobe of my brain. I awaken to the harsh elements of being seventeen. The dream scape in which I thrive in, that surrounded me, vanishes, without so much as a proper goodbye.
And my brain goes to functional stage.
This reality is dulled of colors, with greens that machines created from chemicals of a toxic substance. And yellows that could pass as a dirty white. Yet this is what any red blooded American sees as beautiful. How do I make my dreams and reality coincide with each other? To make them one would seem effortless to the traveling wanderer. But to the fast pace city slicker they will never be near the same time zone. Leaving me to wonder if I’m a vagabond or a CEO at heart.
Will my old dreams break down into a new reality? They can live together, in a spectrum where my brain and heart breathe in the same ideas and feelings. Where they can be one.
This I believe I can do. Can you?