Monday, January 24, 2011

Life Explained, Part Twelve: "This Being Baffled Is Itself The Thing"

I came across the following sonnet by Joseph Treasure in the December 19, 1997, issue of The Times Literary Supplement.  I have not been able to find any other poems by Joseph Treasure.  Is the name perhaps a pseudonym?  At any rate, the poem is a fine one.  It has a bit of a Larkin atmosphere, I think.

                         Being Here

Somewhere I was to go, where I could stand
Steadily on the earth and breathe the air.
And so I've bundled up my courage, and
Felt somewhere else the urge to be elsewhere.

Someone I was to meet who'd make things clear.
But though I've found comfort in company,
Answers I haven't found, and what I fear
Is having no-one left to ask but me.

Something I had to learn, but cannot guess
Now what it was.  Yearly more baffling
I find this place, yearly more ill-defined

Truth and untruth, so nothing's done.  Unless
This being baffled is itself the thing,
And minding just the habit of the mind.

                            Richard Eurich, "Fog Bank, Whitby" (1934)

6 comments:

Dave Lull said...

Here's part of a poem from a Google Books snippet view of volume 70 of Encounter:

... catch breath balancing brittle nerves Precariously to drain beside the sink. No estranged wife, no disaffected lover, No woman wanting more than she deserves, No cause, no words to tell me what to think. Joseph Treasure ...

http://tinyurl.com/4cyrmqk

Stephen Pentz said...

Mr. Lull: Thank you very much for the research and for the link! I will try to track down a copy of that issue of Encounter. Thanks again.

Shelley said...

I always enjoy the finding of lost poems.

This one's kind of like the "we learn by going, where we need to go...."

Stephen Pentz said...

Thank you very much for stopping by again, Shelley. I'm pleased that you liked the poem.

zmkc said...

A lovely poem.

Stephen Pentz said...

Good to hear from you again, zmkc. Yes, it is lovely, isn't it? As always, thank you for the comment.