Tragedy. Suffering.


Note the pair of legs in the bottom right. Tragedy and Suffering. And life continues to move on. I don’t know if I like this or not.

Musée Des Beaux Arts

 About suffering they were never wrong,
The Old Masters: how well they understood
Its human position; how it takes place
While someone else is eating or opening a window or
just walking dully along;
How, when the aged are reverently, passionately waiting
For the miraculous birth, there always must be
Children who did not specially want it to happen, skating
On a pond at the edge of the wood:
They never forgot
That even the dreadful martyrdom must run its course
Anyhow in a corner, some untidy spot
Where the dogs go on with their doggy life and the
torturer’s horse
Scratches its innocent behind on a tree.

In Brueghel’s Icarus, for instance: how everything
turns away
Quite leisurely from the disaster; the ploughman may
have heard the splash, the forsaken cry,
But for him it was not an important failure; the sun shone
As it had to on the white legs disappearing into the green
Water; and the expensive delicate ship that must have seen
Something amazing, a boy falling out of the sky,
Had somewhere to get to and sailed calmly on.

— by W. H. Auden

10 thoughts on “Tragedy. Suffering.

    • For me, there are so many days that are discomforting. Throw in a dash of being too sensitive and a big bag of depression it makes it so hard to figure things out. Like I say often, it hurts my head to think about it. So I try not to think about it. I am like the plowman, trying to do what needs to be done. Trying my best to live my life. But Icarus has been thrown into the sea. His legs. The reminder.

  1. I hear you, Birdie, and you know that I have been there and will still have “those days”. I like Hannah’s comment and echo her sentiments. Sending you much love and warm hugs.

  2. Oh my god. That poem. I remember reading it years ago. I am so glad that you posted it. I think I will put it up on my Tumblr — it’s where I curate stuff. Thank you, Birdie.

    • When I posted it I thought you would like it. I know your love of poetry. I am having a not good day so I keep reading it. Its darkness is soothing my brain.

  3. Something specific must have happened today to bring this out. I’m sorry that you had to feel this way. I so identify with it. I want to put my hands over my ears and do that …lalalalalalalalal thing.
    I hope you wake up tomorrow and your mind is free of any worries, for at least a little while.

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