Sunday, April 28, 2013

The World Is Too Much With Us

"Getting and spending, we lay waste our powers"


The world is too much with us; late and soon,
Getting and spending, we lay waste our powers;—
Little we see in Nature that is ours;
We have given our hearts away, a sordid boon!
This Sea that bares her bosom to the moon;
The winds that will be howling at all hours,
And are up-gathered now like sleeping flowers;
For this, for everything, we are out of tune;
It moves us not. Great God! I’d rather be
A Pagan suckled in a creed outworn;
So might I, standing on this pleasant lea,
Have glimpses that would make me less forlorn;
Have sight of Proteus rising from the sea;
Or hear old Triton blow his wreathèd horn.
William Wordsworth (1806)
Memorizing poems is well worth the effort and is a habit I have observed in many well educated people. This poem is a great place to start. I suggest that many people do not commit poems to memory because 1) their prior education corrupted them into thinking that a poem was meant to be "analyzed"; 2) memorization requires effort and most people will do anything they can to avoid expending effort; and, 3) they suspect that they will not be the same person they were before if they memorize a poem and they are scared of becoming who they really are -- they have a status quo bias.
I very much enjoy this fellow's readings:

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