Paint The Colours In Words


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Novelists and poets of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries found a heightened sense of the dramatic fitness of their own times. The raw materials of their visions were conceived in this heightened sense and were molded, not as they had been in previous centuries, in mythology, in an ancient past, in classical culture or in the Christian religion. Rather, the new tempo of the times, of modern life, was found in the private experiences of men and women who were not special people on the historical stage and in the simple observations of what was all around them. Indeed, the realities of life pressed upon ordinary men and women with heightened colouring. Poets and novelists tried to paint that colouring in words. -Ron Price with thanks to George Steiner, Tolstoy and Dostoevsky, Penguin, London, 1967, pp.27-29.

Gradually, insensibly, in those
many personal plans(1) a poetic
sense of dramatic fitness
invaded my consciousness:
something in me caught fire.

So it was that I came to be
always adding a bit-here
or taking away a bit-there--
and I'm not talking about
pounds or inches off my
waist, mate, but about
trying to say it right and
an epic slowly penetrated
my sensory emporium with
a feeling of religious values
and practice during all this
process of adding a bit here
and a bit there, yessireebob.(2)

My inner struggle could take form,
could express salient ideas, could
create its own mosaic, its own
portrait of myself, my religion and
my society in the midst of a bustling,
jagged and complex realness, a warp
and weft of numerous strands constantly
interwoven into a thick mesh of necessary
density in a space entitled:Pioneering Over
Four Epochs--an immense memoir--so
immense that nobody would read it.

(1) 1979-1986, 1986-1992 and other plans.
(2) Such was the nature of Virgil’s Aeneid. See ibid., p.78.

Ron Price
29 March 2002
19/5/08 for
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