Wednesday, April 19, 2006

Peachy, to the door and what the Romans did for me.

1. The lovely egg-yolky colour of tinned peaches.

2. Getting my groceries delivered. It feels like shoplifting because so little effort is involved.

3. A.E. Houseman's On Wenlock Edge. It's one of my favourite poems. This is because it's very learnable -- each line has a little picture, and the rhyme scheme is simple a b a b. Also, it's about Romans and it deals with one of my favourite themes: things are pretty much the same as they ever were.

I had a bit of an epiphany about this during my GCSE year when I was studying some other poems about Romans in Latin. Catullus was a young man who wrote a series of very brilliant (and very rude, some of them) poems about a heart-rending love affair. I studied them, read them over, wrote about them and suddenly realised that Romans were not just exercises in a Latin primer; they had been human beings who quarrelled and fell in and out of love and teased their friends, just like me. Catullus also made me realise that there was something in this writing lark: he did his best to express things as handsomely and as pleasingly as possible, and 2,000 years later, people are still reading it.

Anyone else got a favourite poem about Romans?