Monday, September 24, 2012

Happy Birthday F. Scott Fitzgerald !

F. Scott Fitzgerald
Today is the birthday of an American author Francis Scott Key Fitzgerald (September 24, 1896 – December 21, 1940), whose works are the paradigm writings of the Jazz Age, a term he coined himself. He is widely regarded as one of the greatest American writers of the 20th century. Fitzgerald is considered a member of the "Lost Generation" of the 1920s. He finished four novels : This Side of Paradise, The Beautiful and Damned, Tender Is the Night, and his most famous, The Great Gatsby. A fifth, unfinished novel, The Love of the Last Tycoon, was published posthumously. Fitzgerald also wrote many short stories that treat themes of youth and promise along with despair and age. The Great Gatsby has been the basis for numerous films of the same name, spanning nearly 90 years; 1926, 1949, 1974, 2000, and an upcoming 2013 adaption. In 1958 his life from 1937–1940 was dramatized in Beloved Infidel. Presenting some poems : Being Poet
WE LEAVE TO-NIGHT
E leave to-night . . .
Silent, we filled the still, deserted street,
A column of dim gray,
And ghosts rose startled at the muffled beat
Along the moonless way;
The shadowy shipyards echoed to the feet
That turned from night and day.
And so we linger on the windless decks,
See on the spectre shore
Shades of a thousand days, poor gray-ribbed wrecks . . .
Oh, shall we then deplore
Those futile years!
See how the sea is white!
The clouds have broken and the heavens burn
To hollow highways, paved with gravelled light
The churning of the waves about the stern
Rises to one voluminous nocturne,
. . . We leave to-night.
SLEEP OF A UNIVERSITY
ATCHING through the long, dim hours
Like statued Mithras, stand ironic towers;
Their haughty lines severe by light
Are softened and gain tragedy at night.
Self-conscious, cynics of their charge,
Proudly they challenge the dreamless world at large.
From pseudo-ancient Nassau Hall, the bell
Crashes the hour, as if to pretend "All's well!"
Over the campus then the listless breeze
Floats along drowsily, filtering through the trees,
Whose twisted branches seem to lie
Like point d'Alencon lace against the sky
Of soft gray-black -- a gorgeous robe
Buttoned with stars, hung over a tiny globe.
With life far-off, peace sits supreme:
The college slumbers in a fatuous dream,
While, watching through the moonless hours
Like statued Mithras, stand the ironic towers.
RAIN BEFORE DAWN
HE dull, faint patter in the drooping hours
Drifts in upon my sleep and fills my hair
With damp; the burden of the heavy air
Is strewn upon me where my tired soul cowers,
Shrinking like some lone queen in empty towers
Dying. Blind with unrest I grow aware:
The pounding of broad wings drifts down the stair
And sates me like the heavy scent of flowers.
I lie upon my heart. My eyes like hands
Grip at the soggy pillow. Now the dawn
Tears from her wetted breast the splattered blouse
Of night; lead-eyed and moist she straggles o'er the lawn,
Between the curtains brooding stares and stands
Like some drenched swimmer -- Death's within the house!
ON A PLAY TWICE SEEN
ERE in the figured dark I watch once more;
There with the curtain rolls a year away,
A year of years -- There was an idle day
Of ours, when happy endings didn't bore
Our unfermented souls, and rocks held ore:
Your little face beside me, wide-eyed, gay,
Smiled its own repertoire, while the poor play
Reached me as a faint ripple reaches shore.
Yawning and wondering an evening through
I watch alone -- and chatterings of course
Spoil the one scene which somehow did have charms;
You wept a bit, and I grew sad for you
Right there, where Mr. X defends divorce
And What's-Her-Name falls fainting in his arms.
PRINCETON -- THE LAST DAY
HE last light wanes and drifts across the land,
The low, long land, the sunny land of spires.
The ghosts of evening tune again their lyres
And wander singing, in a plaintive band
Down the long corridors of trees. Pale fires
Echo the night from tower top to tower.
Oh sleep that dreams and dream that never tires,
Press from the petals of the lotus-flower
Something of this to keep, the essence of an hour!
No more to wait the twilight of the moon
In this sequestrated vale of star and spire;
For one, eternal morning of desire
Passes to time and earthy afternoon.
Here, Heracletus, did you build of fire
And changing stuffs your prophecy far hurled
Down the dead years; this midnight I aspire
To see, mirrored among the embers, curled
In flame, the splendor and the sadness of the world.