Sailing From Byzantium: A Meditation on Encountering History

Once out of nature, I shall never take/ My bodily form from any natural thing,/ But such a form as Grecian goldsmiths make/ Of hammered gold and gold enamelling/ To keep a drowsy Emperor awake;/ Or set upon a golden bough to sing/ To lords and ladies of Byzantium/ Of what is past, or passing,Continue reading “Sailing From Byzantium: A Meditation on Encountering History”

Tolstoy’s People

Many great works of literature are built on a central paradox. Like the Penrose steps, they appear to lead one way or another, depending on our perspective. Is Dante‚Äôs great poem an allegory or a realistic narrative? Milton intended his depiction of Satan to explore the deceptive nature of evil, but he created in himContinue reading “Tolstoy’s People”