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?

3 comments:

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