Saturday, September 01, 2007

Ode to Auden

Today is September 1:

Autumn, not Auden, is on its way. But one of Wystan's finest poems was "September 1, 1939." I'd like to commemorate the poem not by quoting some of what it contains after revision but what is left out. Auden struck the line "We must love one another or die" in later versions, citing it as too saccharine. Perhaps it is. But the sentiment sticks. Let's experiment and see if we can make that line a life. jc