Wednesday, August 05, 2009

Flying crooked

The butterfly, a cabbage-white,

(His honest idiocy of flight)

Will never now, it is too late,

Master the art of flying straight,

Yet has - who knows so well as I?

- A just sense of how not to fly:

He lurches here and here by guess

And God and hope and hopelessness.

Even the acrobatic swift

Has not his flying-crooked gift.


(Robert Graves)

More butterflies later...


Zhoen said...

Which is also how cats walk...

Rouchswalwe said...

If he were a baseball, he'd be a knuckleball! (This is described as a pitch that flies like a drunken butterfly.)

Jan said...

Gooe to call in again to one of the best blogs on the block!

HLiza said...

How did you capture all that? Butterflies are so tiny and so sensitive to their surroundings..I was never able to get their pics!

The Crow said...

The cabbage white is one of my favorite butterflies. In the sun it glistens bright white. In shade, its pale green wings glimmer like a lightning bug.

Lovely photos, Lucy.

Plutarch said...

We have even more than usual this year.

Barrett Bonden said...

Good on yer Rauchswalwe. The knuckleball, baseball's equivalent of the cabbage white - perfect. The trajectory of the pitch is so erratic that only certain catchers (ie, wicket-keepers) are fit to operate behind the plate. Even so the ball is frequently dropped.

I liked this novel (to me, anyway) way of presenting a poem. A couple of lines then a photo, then another couple of lines. Stretching the whole thing out and me thinking it was Lucy all the time. And then the denouement.

Lucy said...

Thanks all.

The whites are among the most erratic and difficult to photograph, which made me think of the poem.

I used to do more of other people's poems and quotes broken up with photos like this, which is why I started doing Joe's series at Compasses. However, since it does look a bit as if I'm trying to pass it off as mine, I've italicised it. Hope that clarifies.

Bee said...

I thought that this was your charming poem!

I'm filled with admiration for your butterfly pictures. We've had so many in the garden recently, and it is exceptionally hard to get any pictures that capture their fluttery grace.

Funny that you should post this today, because just this morning -- when I was at Jane Austen House with Camille (youngest daughter) -- I spied her in the garden, knitting with utter absorption, and surrounded by white butterflies!

A Write Blog said...

Great photos.

Poem captures them too.

Dick said...

Great to read the Graves again. And the butterflies flutter in between the stanzas to fine effect too!

Shaista said...

A beautiful post - I love the cabbage butterfly best of all summer's gifts. I wait all year for its joyful, hope-filled presence in and around our garden. I hadn't come across this Graves poem before -thankyou for including it.