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January 13, 2023


'God may have lost his function as the subject or object of a predicate, but may not be so much dead as entombed in a dead language."

Northrop Frye, "The Great Code"

A New God…!

My brain is searching
For a new God
Can anyone think
Where I might find

Before I reached
Somewhere low
After reaching
Somewhere high

I want to see
My new God
I want to know
If He can vanquish
All genocides

If Not
Can I still call him God?
Yes, I’m sure
We will call him
Once again
Our God!

Our throats
Repeat daily the word,
Million and Billion times
With no response
Then for what…?!

Sylva Portoian, MD
Winner of the Carnegie Poetry Prize,spring 2009
Has 10 medical articles, including in "the lancet".


‘We should not forget our ancient gods,
We created them with our creative hand
After then we started carving Khach-kars
(Armenian cross-Stones)’

Thank you for these comments. The problem of evil remains unsolved. Northrop Frye's essays are terrific ("The Modern Century," "The Educated Imagination").
The post does illustrate the danger in starting an analogy from the greater to the lesser in comparative importance. God makes poetry look very small.

My Lurianic instincts tell me that God depends on poetry!

As for the "problem of evil," these days I'm toying with C.S. Lewis's conceit that "evil is a parasite [on goodness], not an original thing." Strangely, I find that uplifting!

Thanks so much, David, for the great response to the awful piece in the Times about Eliot murdering poetry. In today's Times, there are several good Letters to the Editor on the subject.

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I left it
on when I
left the house
for the pleasure
of coming back
ten hours later
to the greatness
of Teddy Wilson
"After You've Gone"
on the piano
in the corner
of the bedroom
as I enter
in the dark

from New and Selected Poems by David Lehman


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