One Hour

8 Jan

Three photos from my desk in my room over one hour.

“One Hour to Madness and Joy”

by Walt Whitman from Leaves of Grass, 1900

ONE hour to madness and joy!
O furious! O confine me not!
(What is this that frees me so in storms?
What do my shouts amid lightnings and raging winds mean?) 

O to drink the mystic deliria deeper than any other man!
O savage and tender achings!
(I bequeath them to you, my children,
I tell them to you, for reasons, O bridegroom and bride.)

O to be yielded to you, whoever you are, and you to be yielded to me, in defiance of the world!
O to return to Paradise! O bashful and feminine!
O to draw you to me—to plant on you for the first time the lips of a determin’d man!

O the puzzle—the thrice-tied knot—the deep and dark pool! O all untied and illumin’d!
O to speed where there is space enough and air enough at last!
O to be absolv’d from previous ties and conventions—I from mine, and you from yours!
O to find a new unthought-of nonchalance with the best of nature!
O to have the gag remov’d from one’s mouth!
O to have the feeling, to-day or any day, I am sufficient as I am!

O something unprov’d! something in a trance!
O madness amorous! O trembling!
O to escape utterly from others’ anchors and holds!
To drive free! to love free! to dash reckless and dangerous!
To court destruction with taunts—with invitations!
To ascend—to leap to the heavens of the love indicated to me!
To rise thither with my inebriate Soul!
To be lost, if it must be so!
To feed the remainder of life with one hour of fulness and freedom!
With one brief hour of madness and joy.


10 Responses to “One Hour”

  1. dave January 9, 2011 at 2:09 am #

    beautifully done. one blue hour of freedom. may it not be the only or the last.

  2. tombeidler January 9, 2011 at 8:13 am #

    I’m not familiar with this poem so thanks!

    The hours are changing for the better. Did you feel the Earth “switch gears” and change directions? Much more noticeable up here in Helsinki so high.

    • hellosinki January 9, 2011 at 9:18 am #

      Things are certainly changing here. Can you believe that it’s raining today? RAIN, not snow!

      • dave treece January 10, 2011 at 12:35 pm #

        indeed! don’t look now, but the days are getting a little longer. i noticed over the weekend that at 1730 it was still light outside!

      • hellosinki January 10, 2011 at 5:53 pm #

        slowly but surely, we are inching our way towards spring!

  3. TIna January 9, 2011 at 10:34 am #

    I love Whitman, but I had never heard this poem either. i like it a lot. also, it’s incredible how fast the light disappears up there!!

    • hellosinki January 9, 2011 at 10:41 am #

      Thanks, Tina. The light here is an endless source of wonder! And by the way, if you are ever traveling and find yourself feeling slightly homesick for America, you should read Whitman.

  4. nikki January 9, 2011 at 7:08 pm #

    Those three photographs are amazing! The light is just so magnificent there. You should try the same thing one morning for the reverse effect.

    • hellosinki January 10, 2011 at 8:21 am #

      Thanks…overcast and yucky today, no sun to be found.

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