The second Sharing Saturday of the year has arrived and I am excited to share with you some of my writings. I recently wrote a ten-page essay on Jack the Ripper, a serial killer whose identity has never been discovered. This chapter of history has fascinated me since I read Stalking Jack the Ripper by Kerri Maniscalco and I have researched and written a lot about it. So, today I will be sharing with you but a short paragraph about this famous killer. Enjoy!
The Ripper’s crimes took place in London during the nineteenth century when technological advancement and new ideas began to flourish. However, this also brought about a boom in migration and London became an overcrowded, dirty, and desperate place as poor immigrants fought for any way to support their families. Chaos ensued, crimes spread like wildfire; robbery, theft, violence, vandalism and even murder were commonplace as people struggled to feed themselves and their families. Soon London became a haven for criminals and one of the worst parts of London was the East End. From the depths of this place arose one of the most well-known serial killers ever: Jack the Ripper.
I have been so busy in the past few months that I have simply have not had time to post Sharing Saturdays. So, I am going to start with the next Sharing Saturday after the last one even if more than a few weeks have passed. And since it is a new year I have decided to share with you a slideshow of some posts from last year.
Fall is finally here! I can’t believe summer has come to a close. My summer flew by in a wonderful whirl of books and time spent interacting with my amazing followers. Fall is a simply gorgeous time of year with the color changes and I am excited for Winter to follow close on the heels of fall. Today, I will be sharing with you the introduction of an essay I wrote regarding the poem “Ars Poetica” by Archibald MacLeish. It is below. Enjoy!
Poetry is simply a gorgeous creation of words marching in inky blackness against the startling white of a page. And yet the emotion and imagery evoked by twenty-six symbols is stunningly unforgettable. This may in part be due to the idea recognized in Archibald MacLeish’s “Ars Poetica” which states that poetry simply is, not overflowing with a set meaning. “Ars Poetica” focuses on the manner in which any form of art should be personally interpreted instead of set in strict connotations. Through the use of metaphorical couplets, almost constant rhyme, and iambic pentameter, the poem balances free verse and classical poetry. Along with that, the author forms twists by switching the rhyme scheme and not completely sticking to a single meter creating a paradoxical piece. For me personally, the resonance of “Ars Poetica” brings back memories of childhood reading endless poems, stories, and books. In the end, poetry is meant to be, to convey emotion and the everyday struggles and joys of life; it is not filled with meaning and “Ars Poetica” imparts this idea with poignant ease.
Saturday is upon us. Today I have some wonderful news! Escaping from Houdini by Kerri Maniscalco comes out in three days! Three days! It seems like only yesterday that it was two months. I can’t wait for its release so that we can enter yet another bloody mystery.
Saturday has shone its face once again. Sadly, I am behind on posting and it has been a week since my last post, Sharing Saturday Forty. So, I am at last posting and today I will be sharing a short poem with you and my thoughts on the meter used throughout the poem.
I recently stumbled upon a verse that commemorates fallen soldiers on the Thermopylae battlefield at which the Persian’s attacked the fortified Spartans. It is heart-rendingly sad and thought inducing. The poem is below and beyond that is a paragraph articulating my personal opinion on the meter that infiltrates the work.
“Inscription for a War”
Linger not, stranger. Shed no tear.
Go back to those who sent us here.
We are the young they drafted out
To wars their folly brought about.
Go tell those old men, safe in bed,
We took their orders and are dead.
The poetic meter of an “ Inscription for a War” creates a beat that seems to count out the final moments of the dead in verse. The poem consists mostly of iambic pentameter which is slower and stresses the syllables in the manner of a heartbeat or the pounding of drums. This is an excellent meter for the poem, a commemoration of men who died in a battle planned and brought about by those who would never fight at the front line as mentioned in the third stanza, “Go tell those old men, safe in bed, We took their orders and are dead.” The meter does not break throughout the entire poem seeming to never end just like a memory forever passed on. It affects the mood of the poem by infusing it with hope through remembrance for the young drafted to fight a war in which they want no part or know not the true horrors of war. However, it also adds a finality and acceptance to the poem with the constant beat of the iambic pentameter. Overall, the poem seems to be a symbol for all the wars that have been waged throughout history and the meter seems to batter out the never-ending constancy of war. In the end, the author excellently uses iambic pentameter throughout the six line “Inscription of War” to complement the contents and ideas contained within it creating a poignant commemoration for those long forgotten.