1/25/18

But they can't have Imagination! Fer Namesake , Ursula K Le Guin

Cy Est Pourtraicte, Madame Ste Ursule, et Les Unze Mille Vierges

by Wallace Stevens

Ursula, in a garden, found
A bed of radishes.
She kneeled upon the ground
With flowers around,
Blue, gold, pink, and green.
She dressed in red and gold brocade
And in the grass an offering made
of radishes and flowers.


What I love about Le Guin is that she contained multitudes, with focus.  One minute she could say something like this:

Adults seek moral guidance and intellectual challenge in stories about warrior monkeys, one-eyed giants, and crazy knights who fight windmills.  Literacy is considered a beginning, not an end.
....Well, maybe in some other country  but not in this one.  In America the imagination is generally looked on as something that might be useful when the TV is out of order.  Poetry and plays have no relation to practical politics.  Novels are for students, housewives, and other people who don't work. Fantasy is for children and primitive peoples. Literaccy is so you can read the operating instructions.  I think the imagination is the single most useful took we possess.  It beats the opposable thumb. I can imagine living without my thumbs, but not without my imagination.
I hear voices agreeing with me.  "Yes, yes!" they cry.  "The creative imagination is a tremendous plus in business! We value creativity, we reward it!" In the marketplace, the word creativity has come to mean the generation of ideas applicable to practical strategies to make larger profits. This reduction has gone on so long that word creative can hardly be degraded further.  I don't use it any more, yielding it to capitalists and academics to abuse as they like.  But they can't have imagination.

And the next, something like this: 

People who don't worry at least a little bit about semicolons aren't likely to be writers.  

And the next:

Sleep gives us something we need, and we know it; but what it gives us is something we can't know, though we may feel it slip from us as we wake. Refreshment, is it? Solace, simplification, innocence?




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