Saturday, March 1, 2014


THE FERRY
What various hindrances we meet
Before we cross the Bar!
The path is choked with weeds, the weeds
Most fascinating are.

We linger in the undergrowth,
We loiter 'midst the sedges;
Full many a country lane conceals
Poison in its hedges.

We pick up this, we pick up that,
When given tit, we offer tat,
Till suddenly we find we're at
The dark and dismal Ferry.

Though to step forward we are loth
The past we have to bury.
Reluctant as we are
We have to cross the Bar.
~ Frank Baker (1908-1982)

20 comments:

  1. Frank Baker!

    An unappreciated writer today -- more's the pity.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Hi, My Dear Free Thinke

    Thank you once again for another great topic and so timely as well. I’m sorry to have to say this but after the events that happened after my previous comment on your blog, May I suggest that you put a “CAUTION” notice, when commenting on your blog.!
    I've had to make some decisions about even replying here once again after my recent comment on your wonderful blog. I don't mind if people disagree with me and have something intelligent to say about it, I do mind when people disagree and act like they know all or they are the best. And even worse, go on an all out attack, putting MY comments and my avatar on their blog and calling me ““a TROLL, a FAKE, AND STUPID”. When all I did here was make a comment relating to your blog. I never at any time said ONE word or even suggestion about Ms Shaw, her political persuasion, her views, or her blog, and yet just because she didn’t like the fact that I chose to use what I would call a cute and funny screen name, I was SO VICIOUSLY ATTACKED.
    So perhaps you should post a warning here stating : CAUTION: Strong language, may be used in the result of your comment, Enter your comment here at your own risk!
    The fact that my blog is about the vacuous, illogical, vapid, absurd, ludicrous, ridiculous, idiotic, imbecilic, things that liberals in this administration have been doing in the past 5 years has led to all of this! That's what it's all about, it’s not really about me or my screen name. Isn’t that true Ms. Shaw! .
    My biggest complaint is about the people who stop by most blogs only to leave a useless comment that reads like a 5-year old wrote it and makes no sense. It's time-consuming to go through them all and delete these.
    The world we live in these days is not only an interesting world we live in but it can also be a very dangerous world, as we see in the headlines every day. And some people just love negativity and spend their lives wallowing in it. I guess to them it creates great pleasure . So we've got to fight the negative with an overwhelming amount of Positive
    PS, I love your blog especially your poetry. And I can't wait to hear your more of your wisdom, and your thoughts my Dear Friend! !

    Have a great day!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Mirror mirror on the wall...

      Indeed. take a peek.

      Delete
  3. Frank Baker an Englishman is a wonderful and unusual writer, and a master of writing on the supernatural, and horror.


    As for the comment above, some bloggers are found to be a combination of ignorance, arrogance, insulting, insolent, abusive and haters , who get their panties in a wad over the slightest thing but most of all they relish and take pleasure on being insulting.
    It’s just so disheartening seeing all this evil...

    ReplyDelete
  4. Good morning, Frieda and Les,

    Once again I urge both of you -- and those few others who may deign to comment here -- to address the POST and NOT each other.

    The only exception to that rule would be if either or both of you -- or anyone else -- has made a pertinent, perceptive, imaginative observation about the article of the day, and you want to add to it, question it, politely object to it and politely give your reasons for the position you have taken.

    If the topic I have chosen doesn't interest you, just move on.

    The extraneous remarks you and others tend to make may be perfectly true, BUT there is nob point in making them, unless they relate to the POST.

    I always have a POINT in mind wit each item I submit. It would be mannerly if those who pas by would at least express some curiosity as ti what it might be.

    Flattery may be better tan invective, but it's no proper substitute for honest discussion of the topic at hand.

    These net venues seem to bring out The Child in All of Us much too readily.

    ReplyDelete
  5. ____________ QUESTIONS ____________

    1. What does "The Ferry" represent?

    2. What do YOU, personally, plan to do with whatever time YOU have left before you too must "Cross the Bar?"

    3. Poetry is full of symbolism, figurative language and fantasy. Rarely does it speak in blunt mundane language.What does the "Cross the Bar" mean factual terms?

    4. What do you think of the illustration accompanying Frank Baker's poem?

    5. Given today's political, economic and social climate why do you suppose I chose to publish this particular poem? How could it possibly relate or apply to the problems that concern us most?

    ReplyDelete
  6. Thanks for your comment, Highlander. Mr. Baker, Alas! Is no longer with us, but his work lives on. Did you by any chance see the review of his best known novel "Miss Hargreaves" posted here a few weeks ago?

    __________ MORE QUESTIONS __________

    1. Could fantasy possibly help us gain keener insight into reality, or is it useful only as a temporary escape from reality?

    2. Why use symbolism, figures of speech, and allusions to history and literature when you could just "give us the facts?"

    3. We often hear "Man does not live by bread alone ..." what might that mean to you?

    ReplyDelete
  7. Frida Van der WienerMarch 1, 2014 at 3:46 PM

    As a point of clarification, the woman above with a similar name is not me. Please notice we spell our first names differently, and my last name follows Dutch convention.

    The kind and wise man who runs this fine establishment can peek behind the scenes and verify this fact.

    Thank you,

    Frida

    ReplyDelete
  8. Walther von der Vogelweide said

    Oh, I am sure Herr FreeThinke is well aware of the difference between gold and dross, Frida. I happen to know orthography is a special interest of his along with a pronounced penchant for correct grammar, good usage, and refined verbal style in his own literary efforts. However, he also has a sly sense of humour and enjoys savoring his little private jokes.

    Believe me, this gentleman is a rara avis who doesn't miss a trick. He may not suffer fools gladly, but he sometimes enjoys seeing their asinine antics on display. A bit of a sadist he is underneath that decorous exterior.

    ReplyDelete
  9. Frida Van der WienerMarch 2, 2014 at 9:58 AM

    Walther,
    Yes, Herr FreiDenke is indeed a courtly man of refined tastes, possessed of a gift for communicating with wit and grace.

    But a sadist? Mein Gott in Himmel, nein!

    ReplyDelete
  10. I'd love to answer those questions, which are right up my alley.

    Alas! I will be spending today getting ready for the snow storm that will be slamming us tonight and tomorrow. Errands to run, laundry to do. I think of Frost's words: "And miles to go before I sleep."

    Not looking forward to shoveling out.

    It's a shame that commenters haven't come along to address those questions. Such is the condition of the blogosphere. Ugh.

    ReplyDelete
  11. 1. What does "The Ferry" represent?

    Barges on the Nile that moved between Luxor and the Valley of the Kings It also represents the "Swan/Aquila" constellations that crosses the Milky Way between the "Scorpio/ Libra/ Virgo" set and the remaining horoscope constellations.

    2. What do YOU, personally, plan to do with whatever time YOU have left before you too must "Cross the Bar?"

    Avoid crossing the bar

    3. Poetry is full of symbolism, figurative language and fantasy. Rarely does it speak in blunt mundane language.What does the "Cross the Bar" mean factual terms?

    See link above

    4. What do you think of the illustration accompanying Frank Baker's poem?

    I've seen better

    5. Given today's political, economic and social climate why do you suppose I chose to publish this particular poem? How could it possibly relate or apply to the problems that concern us most?

    It could, but you would have to give greater significance to death than life. In the words of the Joker, "Why so serious?"

    ReplyDelete
  12. 1. Could fantasy possibly help us gain keener insight into reality, or is it useful only as a temporary escape from reality?

    It's a logical supplement that represents one calculations as to the "desire" of "the Other" in the "symbolic" realm that mediates between reality and imaginary.

    2. Why use symbolism, figures of speech, and allusions to history and literature when you could just "give us the facts?"

    Because you would have to use the symbolic realm of language to represent the facts anyway.

    3. We often hear "Man does not live by bread alone ..." what might that mean to you?

    Emerson, "Conduct of Life (On Beauty)"

    BEAUTY

    Was never form and never face
    So sweet to SEYD as only grace
    Which did not slumber like a stone
    But hovered gleaming and was gone.
    Beauty chased he everywhere,
    In flame, in storm, in clouds of air.
    He smote the lake to feed his eye
    With the beryl beam of the broken wave;
    He flung in pebbles well to hear
    The moment's music which they gave.
    Oft pealed for him a lofty tone
    From nodding pole and belting zone.
    He heard a voice none else could hear
    From centred and from errant sphere.
    The quaking earth did quake in rhyme,
    Seas ebbed and flowed in epic chime.
    In dens of passion, and pits of wo,
    He saw strong Eros struggling through,
    To sun the dark and solve the curse,
    And beam to the bounds of the universe.
    While thus to love he gave his days
    In loyal worship, scorning praise,
    How spread their lures for him, in vain,
    Thieving Ambition and paltering Gain!
    He thought it happier to be dead,
    To die for Beauty, than live for bread.

    ReplyDelete
  13. Anonymous AnonymousMarch 2, 2014 at 3:45 PM

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  17. Thank you, FJ, for enriching the boar. Sorry I've not been more attentive. Been busy, unwell and frankly disgusted -- always a poor combination.

    for the most part:

    ... Fair is foul -- foul is fair
    Hover through the fog and filthy air ...


    In the blogosphere where swamp gas too often exceeds the supply of oxygen.

    Miasma is killing me. ;-)

    ReplyDelete

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