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A funny quote, and a terrifying one

From The Royal Hunt in Eurasian History, on the training of cheetahs for hunting. After finding the prey, they unleash the cheetah (very funny fact: the cheetah rode on the same horse as his handler, sitting on the back) and set their

head toward the Prey; if he sees it, he gives a shriek, leaps down, falls on the Beast, and pulls it down; if he missed it he is commonly discouraged, and stops; the Master goes to him, comforts him, makes much of him, and tells him it is not his Fault, and that he had not been set directly before the Beast. They say he [the cat] understands that Excuse, and is satisfied with it.

Anybody who ever owned a cat will recognize the situation.

And from Eliot's The Dry Salvages:

The bone's prayer to Death its God. Only the hardly, barely prayable
Prayer of the one Annunciation.

As usual, Eliot's theology is terrifying (and insane for any self-professed Catholic). Death its God is bleak in a relatively naive way, but Prayer of the one Annunciation in that context is starkly existentialist, even and more so because it's not secular.

The more I reread Four Quartets, the more interesting I find it.



( 4 comments — Leave a comment )
Aug. 3rd, 2015 08:01 am (UTC)
Fucking cats. Fucking Eliot.
Aug. 3rd, 2015 07:00 pm (UTC)
Theology and cats. As the phrase goes, in ancient times cats were worshiped as gods, and they haven't forgotten that.
Aug. 5th, 2015 05:51 am (UTC)
I don't understand Eliot. Unlike oke most poetry, however, I fel that there is something there to be understood. And by gods, some of it is beautiful.
Aug. 6th, 2015 01:27 am (UTC)
however, I feel that there is something there to be understood. And by gods, some of it is beautiful.

Yes, that.
( 4 comments — Leave a comment )


cass, can you not

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