Women are beautiful. I love them all. I love the way they smile. A lovely, happy woman with a beautiful smile is good for the soul. That is all I have to say for tonight.
This is one of my favorite poems, by the great Victorian poet, Alfred, Lord Tennyson (1809-1892). It is a lyric from a longer poem of his, “The Princess”. I don’t think many people read “The Princess: today, but this little lyric has more than stood the test of time. It was and remains one of Tennyson’s most beautiful and popular poems. There is a haunting melancholy of a lost past conveyed by the lines. Apparently Tennyson was inspired to write this poem while visiting the ruins of Tintern Abbey, a former Cistercian monastery abandoned in 1536 during Henry VIII’s dissolution of the Catholic monasteries in England. For some reason the ruins of this former Abbey inspired many with romantic nostalgia for the England’s Catholic past: Wordsworth also wrote a famous poem about this very same place, “Lines written a few miles above Tintern Abbey.”
Tennyson was the essence of the Victorian poet: upright, traditional, and deeply in love with Britain and the British past. Today he is not nearly as popular as he was in his heyday (he was the poet laureate of Great Britain), but I have always found his poetry to be rich, spiritual and wonderfully lyrical. T.S. Eliot considered him one of the great masters of words and sounds and rhythms in English poetry, and this poem is a fine example of that. In addition to his lyrical brilliance, Tennyson was also a deeply depressive man, and much of his poetry reflects a state of despair and sadness that permeated his life. As someone who had dealt with deep melancholy myself, this is probably one of the reason I have always enjoyed his poetry. In my hunger for beautiful things Tennyson’s poetry is more than satisfying.
Tears, idle tears, I know not what they mean,
Tears from the depth of some divine despair
Rise in the heart, and gather to the eyes,
In looking on the happy Autumn-fields,
And thinking of the days that are no more.
Fresh as the first beam glittering on a sail,
That brings our friends up from the underworld,
Sad as the last which reddens over one
That sinks with all we love below the verge;
So sad, so fresh, the days that are no more.
Ah, sad and strange as in dark summer dawns
The earliest pipe of half-awakened birds
To dying ears, when unto dying eyes
The casement slowly grows a glimmering square;
So sad, so strange, the days that are no more.
Dear as remembered kisses after death,
And sweet as those by hopeless fancy feigned
On lips that are for others; deep as love,
Deep as first love, and wild with all regret;
O Death in Life, the days that are no more.
Sometimes it is good to remember this aspect of sex and sexual pleasure too. After all, sex ultimately exists to keep the human race going. The pleasure part is only one reason to have sex, albeit an extremely important one. Bonding with another person is also an important reason for sex. And then there is the transmission of life. It is something we share with all other mammals. It is important never to forget, in our technologically sophisticated world, that we are in the end still creatures of the earth. As we say on Ash Wednesday in the Catholic Church, when receiving ashes on the forehead, “Ashes to ashes, dust to dust”, an ancient phrase that has lost none of its meaning in our modern world.
Recently after my close call with death I have become more appreciative of the fragility of life, and how much of a miracle it is simply for a woman to get pregnant and give birth. When you start to think of it, it is fairly amazing. And how important are the bonds between a mother and child? I suppose most of our ability to love and express love with others is somehow related to what we share with our parents, the people who created us, gave us life, and cared for us when we were younger. Of course not everyone has the same experience; sometimes, indeed too often, these relationships are not good, but nevertheless the simple biology of procreation is still something to be amazed at.
There is beauty in all aspects of life. The sheer miracle of it all helps me to sustain my belief in God, and how wonderful our world can be. Love is the guiding force of life we all need to partake of more often.
Recently I have realized that most if not all of my photos are of white women. This is a serious lapse of judgement on my part, since, as a man devoted to the appreciation of feminine beauty, all parts of the world are filled with wonderfully beautiful women. Now, I admit I do feel a particular attraction to the white woman, being white myself, but I also enjoy and appreciate women of all different races and ethnic backgrounds. Each part of the world has its own unique types of beauty. They all deserve, even need, to be celebrated. A man should always be open to cultivating his taste in all types of women.
So here is a toast to starting off the new year with a celebration of all the various forms of female beauty the world has to offer. God was good when he created so many different types of women! I love them all!
Here is nice little poem by Robert Frost. Frost has always been one of my favorite poets. His use of the traditional English metrics is nice and his rustic imagery is always endearing. As someone born and bred in New Hampshire, Frost’s poems were always part of the landscape.
Anyway, this poem is appropriate for winter: Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening. Enjoy. I provided the text below. It is always nice to listen to a great poet reciting some great poetry.
Whose woods these are I think I know.
His house is in the village, though;
He will not see me stopping here
To watch his woods fill up with snow.
My little horse must think it queer
To stop without a farmhouse near
Between the woods and frozen lake
The darkest evening of the year.
He gives his harness bells a shake
To ask if there is some mistake.
The only other sound’s the sweep
Of easy wind and downy flake.
The woods are lovely, dark, and deep,
But I have promises to keep,
And miles to go before I sleep,
And miles to go before I sleep.
Another year begins. What will this year bring? I hope good things, for all of us! Hope, one of the three cardinal virtues, along with Faith and Love, is a wonderful thing. Certain aspects of my faith are in question for me at the moment, but I still firmly believe in the power of Hope and Love. And after having experienced a close call with death recently, I have a renewed appreciation of the power of Faith, Hope and Love. I have a renewed appreciation of every precious moment of life, and of living it well.
And Beauty, yes, I believe in the power of Beauty. What is life without beauty. What is life without the beauty of nature, of art and literature and music and painting and poetry and sculpture and all the other things that touch our souls in the deepest ways, things that seem to have their ultimate origin in the loving creation of God. And for me, and for many of my readers, feminine beauty is one of the highest forms of beauty God has created. So, with my renewed appreciation of life, I will continue to celebrate all these things on this blog during the coming year.
Yes, Happy New Year!!!