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King Lear Act II Scene II

KENT:
Fellow, I know thee.

OSWALD:
What dost thou know me for?

KENT:
A knave; a rascal; an eater of broken meats; a
base, proud, shallow, beggarly, three-suited,
hundred-pound, filthy, worsted-stocking knave; a
lily-livered, action-taking knave, a whoreson,
glass-gazing, super-serviceable finical rogue;
one-trunk-inheriting slave; one that wouldst be a
bawd, in way of good service, and art nothing but
the composition of a knave, beggar, coward, pandar,
and the son and heir of a mongrel bitch: one whom I
will beat into clamorous whining, if thou deniest
the least syllable of thy addition.

OSWALD:
Why, what a monstrous fellow art thou, thus to rail
on one that is neither known of thee nor knows thee!

KENT:
What a brazen-faced varlet art thou, to deny thou
knowest me! Is it two days ago since I tripped up
thy heels, and beat thee before the king? Draw, you
rogue: for, though it be night, yet the moon
shines; I’ll make a sop o’ the moonshine of you:
draw, you whoreson cullionly barber-monger, draw.

[Drawing his sword]

OSWALD:
Away! I have nothing to do with thee.

KENT:
Draw, you rascal: you come with letters against the
king; and take vanity the puppet’s part against the
royalty of her father: draw, you rogue, or I’ll so
carbonado your shanks: draw, you rascal; come your ways.

OSWALD:
Help, ho! murder! help!

KENT:
Strike, you slave; stand, rogue, stand; you neat
slave, strike.

[Beating him]

I have had the privilege of scuba diving. I did it once on holiday, and I’m aware that it’s one of those subjects that people can get pretty boring and sincere about, and sincerity, for we British, is no state in which to dwell, so I’ll be brief. The scuba dive itself was nuministic enough, a drenched heaven; coastal shelves and their staggering, sub-aquatic architecture, like spilt cathedrals, gormless, ghostly fish gliding by like Jackson Pollock’s pets. Silent miracles. What got me, though, was when I came up for air, at the end. As my head came above water after even a paltry 15 minutes in Davy Jones’s Locker, there was something absurd about the surface. How we, the creatures of the land, live our lives, obliviously trundling, flat feet slapping against the dust.

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field

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Nate Klug on Milton’s God

Atsuro Riley is the best least-well-known poet writing today: Thicket

I really like the folding of Rilke that George Kalogeris does in Rilke Rereading Holderlin

Maureen N. McLane : Best Laid

Eliza Griswold : Water Table

Carrie Fountain : Burn Lake

Delightful surprises in Zachary Schomburg’s The One About the Robbers

cross

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Henry Wadsworth Longfellow’s “The Psalm of Life”:

Life is real! Life is earnest!
And the grave is not the goal;
Dust thou art, to dust returnest,
Was not spoken of the soul.

E. E. Cummings, 26 from No Thanks:

what does little Ernest croon
in his death at afternoon?
(kow dow r 2 bul retoinis
wus de woids uf lil Oinis

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