Sunday, January 14, 2007

Tuesday Jan 15

Reading all evening

Man . by Sir John Davis

I know my soul hath power to know all things,
Yet she is blind and ignorant in all:
I know I'm one of Nature's little kings,
Yet to the least and vilest things am thrall.

I know my life's a pain and but a span;
I know my sense is mock'd in everything;
And, to conclude, I know myself a Man -
Which is proud and yet a wretched thing.

2 comments:

  1. Jerroleen SorensenOctober 14, 2007 at 8:11 PM

    He may have been reading the The Oxford Book of English Verse: 1250–1900, Arthur Quiller-Couch, editor, which was published in 1919. Even if he wasn't reading this particular anthology, he probably was reading an anthologized version of this poem by Sir John Davies, who was a fairly obscure poet (1569-1626), even in his own time.

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  2. Thanks, this is great information. Since you're clearly knowledgeable about such things, would you know where to find an English translation of Heine's Elementargeister? Papa mentions it in conjunction with Tannhauser at one point in his diary, and I'd like to give it a look.

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