Posted on April 23rd, 2009 by solocrow.
Categories: Dead Poets, Generic Blatherings, Images.


Crow followed Ulysses till he turned
As a worm, which Crow ate.

Grappling with Hercules’ two puff-adders
He strangled in error Dejanira.

The gold melted out of Hercules’ ashes
Is an electrode in Crow’s brain.

Drinking Beowulf’s blood, and wrapped in his hide,
Crow communes with poltergeists out of old ponds.

His wings are the stiff back of his only book,
Himself the only page — of solid ink.

So he gazes into the quag of the past
Like a gypsy into the crystal of the future,

Like a leopard into a fat land.

~ Crowego, from Ted Hughes’ Crow

1 comment.

Magical Dangers

Posted on April 14th, 2009 by solocrow.
Categories: Dead Poets, Dreams, Generic Blatherings, Images.


Crow thought of a palace —
Its lintel crashed on him, his bones were found.

Crow thought of a fast car —
It plucked his spine out, and left him empty and armless.

Crow thought of the wind’s freedom —
And his eyes evaporated, the wind whistled over the Turkish Saddle.

Crow thought of a wage —
And it choked him, it was cut unspoiled from his dead stomach.

Crow thought of the soft and warm that is long remembered —
It blindfolded him with silk, it gangplanked him into a volcano.

Crow thought of intelligence —
It turned the key against him and he tore at its fruitless bars.

Crow thought of nature’s stupor —
And an oak tree grew out of his ear.

A row of his black children sat in the top.
They flew off.

Never again moved.

~ Magical Dangers, from Ted Hughes’ Crow


The Tale of Genji

Posted on February 10th, 2009 by solocrow.
Categories: Dead Poets, Generic Blatherings.

The ghost of Yugao by Yoshitoshi

Yes, yes. I know the Ninjas are in need of attention, dear readers — all good things to those who wait! 😀

Lately I’ve been absorbed in reading a translation of Lady Murasaki’s The Tale of Genji. Researching various intricacies of the text lead me to a lovely series of prints called One Hundred Aspects of the Moon (1885-1892) by the Japanese artist Tsukioka Yoshitoshi.

The print above illustrates the Ghost of Yugao [one of Genji’s conquests on a ‘dark and stormy night’ in the early chapters of the novel]. Yugao means ‘moonflower’ in Japanese.

A complete listing of the One Hundred Aspects of the Moon can be found here. From the site:

Tsukioka Yoshitoshi (1839-1892) is a pupil of Kuniyoshi’s. The first designs of his popular Tsuki hyakushi (A Hundred Views of the Moon) are published in 1885. The subjects are taken from Indian and Chinese legends, famous musicians and poets, and heroes of classic novels and plays.


Summer fruits

Posted on August 12th, 2008 by solocrow.
Categories: Dead Poets, Generic Blatherings, Images.

Although cherry blossoms are most often associated with Spring, here’s a version of a recent linocut that is the fruit of a few of my summer labors.

I value my garden more for being full of blackbirds than of cherries, and very frankly give them fruit for their songs.

~ Joseph Addison [1672-1719]

And of course, a little something from Shakespeare:

So we grew together,
Like to a double cherry, seeming parted,
But yet an union in partition;
Two lovely berries moulded on one stem.

~ From A Midsummer’s Night Dream, [III. ii. 208]


The Vintage of River is Unending

Posted on January 4th, 2008 by solocrow.
Categories: Dead Poets, Generic Blatherings.


Grape-heavy woods ripen darkening
The sweetness.

Tight with golden light
The hills have been gathered.

Granite weights of sun.
Tread of burning days.

Unending river
Swells from the press
To gladden men.

~ Ted Hughes, from River (1983).