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It seems impossible to say anything without it becoming a totally tiresome
personal attack. I did say something, as did Carrol. I don't see any point
to repeating it. But mean-spirited personal remarks do not mean I missed
anything. And as obnoxious as it is to say this, I really don't think you
are qualified to tell me what I understand or miss. One could quite
logically--from your statement--argue that symbols give classified ads the
CAPACITY [emphasis yours] to elicit the incommensurable and transcendent.
In fact, watching even a few on TV suggests that fast cars, chocolates,
shampoo, air fresheners, Cialis (though in separate bathtubs),
"everything's better when it ships free," (now have a slightly hysterical
upsurge of ecstasy), [fill in your own]--are all instant routes to the
incommensurable and transcendent.

This is predictable and immediate leap to sneering is also, I think, why
this list long ago ceased to sustain any real discussion.
Nancy

On Sun, Feb 5, 2017 at 5:37 PM, Ken A <[log in to unmask]> wrote:

> In the ever so brief quote from Hughes, he said the symbolic nature of
> poetry gives it the CAPACITY to elicit the incommensurable and
> transcendence. Why assert that this excludes anything else that poetry
> might do? Carrol and you apparently missed that seemingly reasonable part
> of the formulation.  Of Carrol's objection to Hughes' wordiness: at least
> Hughes had something to say. Most especially on the T S Eliot list, I would
> hope that poetry's dealings with ultimate meaning, the incommensurable, and
> transcendence constitute eminently appropriate topics of conversation.
>
> Ken A
> On Feb 5, 2017, at 4:58 PM, Nancy Gish <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
>>
>> The issue I raised is about "symbol" vs. "symbolist."
>> N
>>
>> On Sun, Feb 5, 2017 at 4:46 PM, Chanan Mittal <[log in to unmask]>
>> wrote:
>>
>>> "Neither flesh nor fleshless"
>>>
>>> "concentration / Without elimination"
>>>
>>> No, it does not exclude anything. It includes the physical as well as
>>> the metaphysical.  Only it does not exclude the ultimate, the
>>> permanent, the Absolute. It adds something to, and thus enriches, our
>>> experience of this world.
>>>
>>> *Who is the third who walks always beside you? *
>>> *When I count, there are only you and I together *
>>> *But when I look ahead up the white road *
>>> *There is always another one walking beside you *
>>> *Gliding wrapt in a brown mantle, hooded *
>>> *I do not know whether a man or a woman *
>>> *—But who is that on the other side of you? *
>>>
>>> CR
>>>
>>> On Sun, Feb 5, 2017 at 1:12 PM Nancy Gish < [log in to unmask]>
>>> wrote:
>>>
>>>> The issue here is, as you note, what one means by "symbolic." Hughes
>>>> seems to think it is the same as "symbolist" in the notion of being a
>>>> gateway to a spiritual world outside physical reality. That would seem to
>>>> cut out a great deal of poetry--like imagism, or WCW or Levertov or any
>>>> poet who saw or sees poems as ways to engage with the material world
>>>> directly.
>>>>
>>>> Otherwise, as you say, it is just a tautology.
>>>> Nancy
>>>>
>>>> On Sun, Feb 5, 2017 at 1:07 PM, Carrol Cox <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
>>>>
>>>> "Because poetry is fundamentally symbolic in its form, it possesses the
>>>> capacity to suggest the incommensurable and unknowable of the
>>>> transcendence
>>>> and thereby reawaken the spiritual experiences that gave rise to the
>>>> symbols
>>>> and stories of poetry in the first place."
>>>>
>>>> This is an odd proposition. Classified ads are fundamentally symbolic.
>>>> Porn
>>>> videos on YouTube  are fundamentally symbolic. Coffee-shop chatter is
>>>> fundamentally symbolic. Nothing in particular follows from the
>>>> tautology
>>>> that poetry is symbolic.
>>>>
>>>> The portentousness of the mere word, "symbol," is itself a bit odd.
>>>>
>>>> And what is the difference between "poetry is symbolic" and "poetry is
>>>> fundamentally symbolic in its form"?
>>>>
>>>> Carrol
>>>>
>>>>
>>>>
>>