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Comment 5 of 55, added on July 30th, 2008 at 5:47 PM.
Much of the Cantos seems to me rather incomprehensible and distilled as to
be illegible unless you were Ezra Pound himself or someone who had read and
studied exactly the same works as him. Nonetheless, the Canto here shows
parts of the poem are extremely lucid and clearly argued, as Confucius
himself would have advised.
In fact, sections like this and Canto 81 make me feel that some kind of
justification has to be put in place for the serious reading and study of
the Cantos as an essential part of contemporary literature. It is, simply
put, beautiful; clear, limpid and also sucessful in finding an unaffected
modern idiom. Pound's views were inexcusable, disgusting, insane, but I
cannot convincedly condemn someone whose own poetry has given me so much
pleasure, as here.
Comment 4 of 55, added on May 22nd, 2005 at 9:57 AM.
The three disciples of Confucius represent three arms of the state.
Tseu-Lou is a soldier, Khieu the government official and Tchi embodies the
spirit through philosophy and religion. They each answer the master
correctly offering the best they can do, whether this is putting the
'defences in order' or by performing rituals 'with order in the
observances.' Pound attempts to give this alien philosophy an American
feel, as they sit near 'The old swimming hole./ And the boys flopping off
the planks,'. This is Pound's first attempt to suggest that the earthly
paradise is about sound ghovernment, a theme that is dominant thoughout The
Cantos. The Cantos is the major poem of the 20th Century, one of the few
that investigates how government works and how much state control is
compatible with civilisation. It is a plea for individualism within a
system of justice that is the same for all.
from United Kingdom
Comment 3 of 55, added on April 5th, 2005 at 12:26 AM.
Fruits of a lifetime of reading, this is a attemt to subjectivize sayings
from the Analects to that the voice of Master Kung, shorn of device,
becomes clear in all it's luminous vitality.
My understanding of Pound's treatement of Confucius is that here is a
teacher who is treated in modern Asia as a demagogue and a praiser of
tyrants. But if you were to actually listen to the man, Master Kung, you
would see a proponent of individualism, integrity, vigor, and sprightly
vitality emerge. Kung is not some stiff puppet here but a man willing to
content for the truth.
This, at least, is how Pound seeks to present him.
The context of Pound's treatment of Kung here is the wider criticisms in
the Canto's of money manipulations, usury, and centralized banking as
undercutting human dignity and freedom. Sanctimonious tut-tutting of his
"views" really are beside the point of the central thesis of human dignity
This quote, from Kung, is one attempt to marshall evidence to this thesis.
Personally I think Pound fails. Simon Ley's transliteration of the Analects
captures the exciting true vigor of Confucious without the distortion of
Pound's pounderous political loyalties.
Comment 2 of 55, added on January 17th, 2005 at 6:26 PM.
A pure essence of poetry by the poetic genius of ezra.idisagree with his
political view i have the deep feeling that Canto XIII is closer to
philosophy than poetry.
Ioannis Iolaos Maniatis
Comment 1 of 55, added on November 15th, 2004 at 12:09 PM.
Utterly beautiful, this poem has lasted all my life. I fail to grasp why
critics do not accord Pound the position he so richly deserves.
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