spliced comma

a blog about books and their desire to be loved

Tag: poetry

The Letter Where Adrienne Rich Declines The National Medal

Over at Brain Pickings, they have reproduced Adrienne Rich’s letter to President Clinton and The National Endowment for the Arts, where she declines her National Medal for the Arts award. The letter is short, but has powerful paragraphs like this one:

There is no simple formula for the relationship of art to justice. But I do know that art—in my own case the art of poetry—means nothing if it simply decorates the dinner table of power which holds it hostage. The radical disparities of wealth and power in America are widening at a devastating rate. A President cannot meaningfully honor certain token artists while the people at large are so dishonored.

There is also audio of Rich reading the letter on Democracy Now‘s radio show.

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Sláinte

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From Flann O’Brien’s At Swim-Two-Birds:

When things go wrong and will not come right,
Though you do the best you can,
When life looks black as the hour of night —
A PINT OF PLAIN IS YOUR ONLY MAN.

When money’s tight and is hard to get
And your horse has also ran,
When all you have is a heap of debt —
A PINT OF PLAIN IS YOUR ONLY MAN.

When health is bad and your heart feels strange,
And your face is pale and wan,
When doctors say that you need a change,
A PINT OF PLAIN IS YOUR ONLY MAN.

When food is scarce and your larder bare
And no rashers grease your pan,
When hunger grows as your meals are rare —
A PINT OF PLAIN IS YOUR ONLY MAN.

In time of trouble and lousy strife,
You have still got a darlint plan,
You still can turn to a brighter life —
A PINT OF PLAIN IS YOUR ONLY MAN.