Wednesday, June 2, 2010

The Late, Great Dorothy Parker

I turn to her when I need to be inspired and amazed...she never lets me down.  Here's two from the incomparable Mrs. Parker:

"Symptom Recital"
I do not like my state of mind;
I'm bitter, querulous, unkind.
I hate my legs, I hate my hands,
I do not yearn for lovelier lands.
I dread the dawn's recurrent light;
I hate to go to bed at night.
I snoot at simple, earnest folk.
I cannot take the gentlest joke.
I find no peace in paint or type.
My world is but a lot of tripe.
I'm disillusioned, empty-breasted.
For what I think, I'd be arrested.
I am not sick, I am not well.
My quondam dreams are shot to hell.
My soul is crushed, my spirit sore;
I do not like me any more.
I cavil, quarrel, grumble, grouse.
I ponder on the narrow house.
I shudder at the thought of men....
I'm due to fall in love again."

The two most beautiful words in the English language are 'cheque enclosed."

Some things never change, eh?


Jennifer, aka beautiful mind, complex life said...

I love Dorothy Parker too! Those are two great ones you posted. "Resume" is also excellent. I often wish I'd known her; she would have been a blast to hang out with at a coffee shop dishing the dirt on various victims of her scrutiny. She was brilliant and hysterical.

Anonymous said...

I know very little (almost nothing) about Dorothy Parker, other than she was a satirist known for her wit. After reading her poem and her thought that you posted, I will have to read more about her and by her. With that poem, she comes across as someone whose work I think I would enjoy reading. Thank you -- MikeB

Anonymous said...

I guess Symptom Recital is a poem of disillusionment (with some "hope" at the end). Here is another which might also be of the same nature:

"A long, restless night, / now my tangled hair / sweeps the strings of my koto. / Three months into spring / and I've not played one note."

This tanka (31-syllable poem of five lines with 5-7-5-7-7 syllables), was written by Yosano Akiko (1878-1942), and is shown above in a translation from the original Japanese.

Keep up the very interesting posts. -- MikeB