Wednesday, June 12, 2013

It dropped so low – in my Regard –
I heard it hit the Ground –
And go to pieces on the Stones
At bottom of my Mind –

Yet blamed the Fate that flung it – less
Than I denounced Myself,
For entertaining Plated Wares
Upon My Silver Shelf –
~ Emily Dickinson (1830-1886)


  1. Speaking of thinly plated wares.

    FT, do you have an option to ban anonymous posts?

  2. OK, I'm stumped.

    She shouldn't have put plated wares upon her silver shelf?

    Is that like throwing pearls before swine?

    What are plated wares?


    Yes, blogger does have a setting that bans anonymous comments.

    That was the immediate remedy to my troll infestation last year. Alas, even that does little good, since people can readily make multiple accounts and troll you with them, since Blooger has no blocking mechanism.

    That's why Wester Hero made the much maligned decision to go to Disqus. It is excellent at blocking spam, and you can single out individual accounts for blacklisting.

  3. btw - How many Affirmative Action Harvard degree's does it take to gold-plate a communist?

  4. Last night as I lay sleeping,
    I died .. or so it seemed,
    Then I went to heaven
    But only in my dream

    I was greeted by St. Peter
    Standing at the Pearly Gates.
    He said, 'I must check your record...
    Please stand right here and wait.'

    He turned and said 'Your record
    Is covered with terrible flaws,
    On earth I see you rallied
    For every losing cause.

    'I see that you drank alcohol
    And smoked and partied too,
    Fact is, you've done everything
    A good person should not do.

    'We can't have people like you here...
    Your life was full of sin.'
    Then he read the last line of my record,
    Took my hand and said, 'Come in.'

    He led me to the Lord and said,
    We'll take him and treat him well,
    He used to work for Barack Obama...
    He's done his time in hell.

    Have a good day my friend. I've read and enjoy your poetry.

  5. Truth and Freedom vs. Tyranny and Propaganda

    Sabotaging America: Incompetent or Intentional, In an age of deliberate obfuscation, an age of misdirection and misinformation, distortion and deliberate misinformation is it no wonder we have liberals amongst us

  6. Close, IMHO...

    Plato, "Gorgias"

    SOCRATES: I will try, then, to explain my notion of rhetoric, and if I am mistaken, my friend Polus shall refute me. We may assume the existence of bodies and of souls?

    GORGIAS: Of course.

    SOCRATES: You would further admit that there is a good condition of either of them?

    GORGIAS: Yes.

    SOCRATES: Which condition may not be really good, but good only in appearance? I mean to say, that there are many persons who appear to be in good health, and whom only a physician or trainer will discern at first sight not to be in good health.

    GORGIAS: True.

    SOCRATES: And this applies not only to the body, but also to the soul: in either there may be that which gives the appearance of health and not the reality?

    GORGIAS: Yes, certainly.

    SOCRATES: And now I will endeavour to explain to you more clearly what I mean: The soul and body being two, have two arts corresponding to them: there is the art of politics attending on the soul; and another art attending on the body, of which I know no single name, but which may be described as having two divisions, one of them gymnastic, and the other medicine. And in politics there is a legislative part, which answers to gymnastic, as justice does to medicine; and the two parts run into one another, justice having to do with the same subject as legislation, and medicine with the same subject as gymnastic, but with a difference. Now, seeing that there are these four arts, two attending on the body and two on the soul for their highest good; flattery knowing, or rather guessing their natures, has distributed herself into four shams or simulations of them; she puts on the likeness of some one or other of them, and pretends to be that which she simulates, and having no regard for men's highest interests, is ever making pleasure the bait of the unwary, and deceiving them into the belief that she is of the highest value to them. Cookery simulates the disguise of medicine, and pretends to know what food is the best for the body; and if the physician and the cook had to enter into a competition in which children were the judges, or men who had no more sense than children, as to which of them best understands the goodness or badness of food, the physician would be starved to death. A flattery I deem this to be and of an ignoble sort, Polus, for to you I am now addressing myself, because it aims at pleasure without any thought of the best. An art I do not call it, but only an experience, because it is unable to explain or to give a reason of the nature of its own applications. And I do not call any irrational thing an art; but if you dispute my words, I am prepared to argue in defence of them.

    Cookery, then, I maintain to be a flattery which takes the form of medicine; and tiring, in like manner, is a flattery which takes the form of gymnastic, and is knavish, false, ignoble, illiberal, working deceitfully by the help of lines, and colours, and enamels, and garments, and making men affect a spurious beauty to the neglect of the true beauty which is given by gymnastic.

    I would rather not be tedious, and therefore I will only say, after the manner of the geometricians (for I think that by this time you will be able to follow)

    as attiring: gymnastic:: cookery: medicine;

    or rather,

    as attiring: gymnastic:: sophistry: legislation;


    as cookery: medicine:: rhetoric: justice.

  7. "Brevity is the soul of wit."


    Dystopia Schmerzenberg

  8. "A foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of a small mind." - Emerson

    ps- Callimachus did it better, Dystopia

    Your friend, Apollonius of Rhodes.

    Most writers, noble sire, and either son,
    Are, with the likeness of the truth, undone.
    Myself for shortness labour, and I grow
    Obscure. This, striving to run smooth, and flow
    Hath neither soul nor sinews. Lofty he
    Professing greatness swells; that low by lee,
    Creeps on the ground; too safe, afraid of storm
    This seeking, in a various kind, to form
    One thing prodigiously, paint's in the woods
    A dolphin, and a boar amid the floods,
    So shunning faults to greater fault does lead,
    When in a wrong and artless way we tread.

    Horace, "Ars Poetica"

  9. Good old iambic pentameter! It does withstand the test of time very well.

    But now I must into the shower fly
    To ready head and body for a date
    To meet to sip and sup, so I must try
    To keep my end up by not being late.

  10. “Reputation is a hall-mark: it can remove doubt from pure silver, and it can also make the plated article pass for pure.”

    Mark Twain

    ...planting Leyland Cypress in Paradise...



  11. Silverfiddle,
    Plated silver covers "junk" metal.

    When the "junk" metal starts peeking through, the silver ware is ugly.

    Plating has a limited life span; therefore, the revelation of the true composition of plated ware.

    Tarnish can be removed from "solid" silver, but tarnish cannot be removed from plated ware. There is possible restoration of plating, but it is still always plating.

  12. A veggie burger or turkey burger instead of beef burger saves obesity.

    ~ Michelle Obama 2013

  13. Hurrah! Hurrah! for Andie!
    I'm so glad you're planting trees.
    Leyland Cypress make a handy
    Break between you and the breeze.

    They'll quickly grow and screen you
    From the garbage cans and swings,
    And help protect your purview
    From all unsightly things.

    So glad you made contact, Andie. I was honestly beginning to worry about you, since you "disappeared" for several weeks.

    I urge all people of good will to visit Andie's blog -- Divine Theatre. It provides a unique, fascinating and refreshing set of insights and examples in the Art of Living Well through vigorous exercise of the imagination and creative drive. I've found both fun and inspiration at Divine Theatre.

  14. Thank you for clarifying the literal meaning of "plated wares" so well, AOW. Yes. In the manufacture of silver plate a very thin layer of genuine silver is applied to a form made of base metal. Antiques collectors sometimes call it "pot metal" or "slush metal."

    I used to find this particular poem cryptic, but then it came to me that Emily Dickinson uses "silver shelf" as a metaphor for all that is finest, highest, purest, most precious and sacrosanct in her consciousness. In other words "things worth bothering with."

    She is gently chiding herself for having mistaken individuals, pursuits or items that appeared fine at first glance, but later proved themselves base, false or meretricious for something worthy of her time and attention.

    Poetry is full of the symbolic language of metaphor, simile, and allusion.

    Poetry is notable for expressing ordinary thoughts in extraordinary ways that stimulate the imagination and enrich our lives, engage our sympathies, and stir our passions while broadening our outlook.

  15. “In science one tries to tell people, in such a way as to be understood by everyone, something that no one ever knew before. But in poetry, it’s the exact opposite.”

    - Franz Kafka

  16. "Poetry is when an emotion has found its thought and the thought has found words." - Robert Frost


  17. FT,
    Mr. AOW and I used to have a retail/wholesale business dealing in coins, jewelry, and precious metals.

    Understanding the literal meaning of plating is the key to interpreting this poem. And your interpretation is spot on.

  18. BTW, if one's silver shelf holds bleeding plated ware, the plated ware looks even worse. And so does the shelf!



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