This week, a little Shakespeare, a little Lawrence, and a healthy dose of Tom Jones…
Nothing to Save, by D.H. Lawrence
Read by Xe Sands
So I wrote a post. And I deleted it. Because there just aren’t adequate words for grief and loss. And if there were, I wouldn’t want to say them aloud. Or write them.
At some point, there might be a post that celebrates (because he’d much prefer that to this sad sh*t and Lawrence, I have no doubt). At some point.
I’ll miss you, my friend. Thank you for always believing I was more than I could ever believe.
Sonnet 116, by William Shakespeare
Read by Diane Havens
This, one of my most treasured gifts:
A mobius bracelet with sonnet
inscribed upon it
Set to the music of Jon Sayles.
Let me not to the marriage of true minds
Admit impediments. Love is not love
Which alters when it alteration finds,
Or bends with the remover to remove:
O, no! it is an ever-fixed mark,
That looks on tempests and is never shaken;
It is the star to every wandering bark,
Whose worth’s unknown, although his height be taken.
Love ’s not Time’s fool, though rosy lips and cheeks
Within his bending sickle’s compass come;
Love alters not with his brief hours and weeks,
But bears it out even to the edge of doom.
If this be error, and upon me prov’d,
I never writ, nor no man ever lov’d.
Tom Jones – Book 3, Chapter 7, by Henry Fielding
Read by Mark Turetsky
Book 3 Chapter 7 of Tom Jones.
This is part of an ongoing project in which I will record and post one chapter per week of Henry Fielding’s Tom Jones over the course of four years.
So, this is something of a short chapter, but it hints at something that we heard a few chapters ago: that, despite all appearances to the contrary, Mr. Allworthy doesn’t have a faultless character. Here we see that he is sometimes blinded by his own compassion, viz his favoring Blifil over Tom because his sister, the Widow Blifil hates the former and loves the latter.
This chapter also contains the novel’s most concise and blunt statement of its moral: “It is not enough that your designs, nay, that your actions, are intrinsically good; you must take care they shall appear so.” The way Fielding gets this across is interesting in and of itself, in that he addresses the reader (especially the young reader) directly in order to make his point. At this point in the history of the novel, the explicit purpose of the form was either to titillate or to educate (though many of the former books couched their titillation within a sermon about the sins we should all avoid in life, with pictures!).