Charles Clanton Rogers

Reflections based on poetry, music, visual art, book reviews, history of science, first-person history, philosophical essays and International Blogging

brook frost 3

West Running Brook

‘Fred, where is north?’

‘North? North is there, my love.
The brook runs west.’

‘West-running Brook then call it.’
(West-Running Brook men call it to this day.)

‘What does it think k’s doing running west

When all the other country brooks flow east
To reach the ocean? It must be the brook

Can trust iitself to go by contraries

The way I can with you–and you with me–
Because we’re — we’re — I don’t know what we are.
What are we?’

‘Young or new?’

‘We must be something.
We’ve said we two. Let’s change that to we three.
As you and I are married to each other,
We’ll both be married to the brook. We’ll build
Our bridge across it, and the bridge shall be
Our arm thrown over it asleep beside it.
Look, look, it’s waving to us with a wave
To let us know it hears me.’

‘ ‘Why, my dear,
That wave’s been standing off this jut of shore –‘
(The black stream, catching a sunken rock,
Flung backward on itself in one white wave,
And the white water rode the black forever,
Not gaining but not losing, like a bird
White feathers from the struggle of whose breast
Flecked the dark stream and flecked the darker pool
Below the point, and were at last driven wrinkled
In a white scarf against the far shore alders.)
‘That wave’s been standing off this jut of shore
Ever since rivers, I was going to say,’
Were made in heaven. It wasn’t waved to us.’

‘It wasn’t, yet it was. If not to you
It was to me — in an annunciation.’

‘Oh, if you take it off to lady-land,
As’t were the country of the Amazons
We men must see you to the confines of
And leave you there, ourselves forbid to enter,-
It is your brook! I have no more to say.’

‘Yes, you have, too. Go on. You thought of something.’

‘Speaking of contraries, see how the brook
In that white wave runs counter to itself.

It is from that in water we were from

Long, long before we were from any creature
Here we, in our impatience of the steps,
Get back to the beginning of beginnings,

The stream of everything that runs away

Some say existence like a Pirouot

And Pirouette, forever in one place,

Stands still and dances, but it runs away.
It seriously, sadly, runs away
To fill the abyss’ void with emptiness.
It flows beside us in this water brook,
But it flows over us. It flows between us
To separate us for a panic moment.
It flows between us, over us, and with us.
And it is time, strength, tone, light, life and love-
And even substance lapsing unsubstantial;
The universal cataract of death
That spends to nothingness — and unresisted,
Save by some strange resistance in itself,
Not just a swerving, but a throwing back,
As if regret were in it and were sacred.
It has this throwing backward on itself
So that the fall of most of it is always
Raising a little, sending up a little.

Our life runs down in sending up the clock.

The brook runs down in sending up our life..

The sun runs down in sending up the brook.

And there is something sending up the sun.

It is this backward motion toward the source,

Against the stream, that most we see ourselves in,
The tribute of the current to the source.

It is from this in nature we are from.

It is most us.

“To-day will be the day….You said so.’

“No, to-day will be the day

You said the brook was called West-running Brook.’

To-day will be the day of what we both said.’

by Robert Frost Mar 26, 1874 – Jan 29, 1963


brook frost

9 thoughts on “West Running Brook

  1. bbnewsab says:

    A post full of wisdom. But perhaps a bit long-winded. I had some difficulties finding the read thread.

    Anyhow, KK, your post confirms what I myself believe in.

    I believe all humans have a need to be seen and accepted. We want to be loved. But many families are dysfunctional. Way too many. Love is often absent.

    Often the father is nonattending – or at least incapable to hug his own children and/or show them respect.

    Religion often teaches that children must obey their parents (fathers), even if their parents are wrong. It’s strictly forbidden to question their authority. Some religions are more authoritarian than others. Religious fundamentalism and authoritarianism go hand in hand.

    Authoritarianism often leads to an experienced sense of externalized locus of control. And that, in turn, can make a child feel frustrated and full of hatred, seeking to revenge itself.

    If all children could have a childhood similar to the one KK is telling us about here on his blog, even ISIS/Daesh would have been a bridgebuilding organization instead of promoting insane terrorism and terror.

    But now I notice I return to expressing my thoughts of religion(s) here on KK’s blog. And I know that is not appreciated. But nevertheless I choose not to erase this comment. I think my message is important to know, especially if KK is going to succeed in his ambition to create a global community of bridgebuilders.

    So hopefully KK will not delete this comment, although he dislikes my promoting of antireligious ideas (at least on his blog).

    Liked by 1 person

    1. clanton1934 says:

      Thank you, PV. I have never deleted a single word of your helpful words of insight.. The only thing I have said one time was: “Sometimes I choose to ignore the topic of “magical thinking “. And then I went on to say that forces like ISIS will not allow me to ignore it. I wanted to “tame Mr. Fox” using the fox’s own definition of taming which is acceptance and intentionally “taking care of & being responsible for” – not changing the nature of. The little prince’s rose: he says it is his rose including what she says and even when she says nothing! He has chosen take care of her” being responsible. Read what the Fox explains: what “to tame” means. Being responsible for, because he has chosen to–he said nothing about the little Prince changing what the fox is!
      As for “Magical Thinkers” : They have chosen to be the enemy of rational thinkers. We, rational thinkers do not get to choose the challenge which confronts; we can only choose how we respond to it! I will not choose to ignore it. I am a student of “The Art of War”, Sun Tse. He says you must study you enemy and respond sometimes being silent in ones study; never ignore the enemy. The godfather says “embrace the enemy”; “keep your friends close, but your enemies closer”. Engage not ignore!
      So PV is KK’s Fox, whom he has “tamed” (by the Fox’s definition!)
      Be the Fox. The Fox also “tames” the Little Prince. Diogenes is looking for an honest man to honor him not to change him!
      You are just fine now come on to “my planet” and sit down next to me while I play you a tune! K

      Liked by 1 person

  2. It all start with family, and if that is broken many other parts become unhinged.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. clanton1934 says:

      Absolutely! I have written several posts on family. The family that was born into & the family that I have today: “I have won the Family Lottery,?twice”! Your’s must be great. c

      Liked by 2 people

      1. Yes we saw them. it’s the best lottery anyone can win!!

        Liked by 2 people

  3. bbnewsab says:

    What a wonderful dialogue to follow/read! I get tears in my eyes.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. clanton1934 says:

    Good evening, PV,

    Liked by 1 person

  5. bbnewsab says:

    A very Good evening to you, KK! And all your RWT (Readers & Writers Tribe) Community.

    And since we here in Sweden now already have started the 26th day of November, I also say Good night to you all at the same time.


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