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Thinking is evolution of learning over time.

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Learning is evolution of knowledge over time.

in From Art to Science in Manufacturing: The Evolution of Technological Knowledge (2005)Report problemRelated quotes
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Lessons Learned Over Time

Grapes ripe to pick and juicy when first licked,
Will always keep a taste sweet in one's mind.
As remembered lessons learned over time,
Are kept as one ages.
And the vine from which they were picked,
Remembered as if the only one to exist...
That committed an encouragement to nourish.

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Accountability over time

I have always believed
that people
who propagated
accountability over time
should go to places
like the nuthouse

Yet the time
of a person’s life
runs out
and every day
sneaks past
while the next
goes on continually

Yet it remains wise
to live every day
to the limit
and to make
the best of it
as if it is the very last.

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Over Time

milz will climb over time and shine like a glass of wine,
as in time, as in time, is yet for him to find...
for which he is blind, blind to find this vary fine and devine peace of time...
milz will only climb and shine
over time for now its milzs time to shine,
shine so bight with light that might be so bight
for now is milzs time to shine
how milz will climb over time..
for he is a great friend of mine
milz milz milz milz milz milz milz
oh how could the world live with out milz

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Sage Law Wisdom Learned

Universal law of life
respected wise people
knowledgeable wise
experienced seasoned
in wisdom life learned

Revered for wisdom
revered for good
judgement wisdom
long experience gained
really lifetime learned?

Sage law dictates
law of young born old
old soul life reborn
old soul new born
past lessons learned

Sixty at sixteen
pales beside wisdom
universal at five six
eyes watching
eye knowing

Eyes thinking
mind expanding
listening learning
absorbing time
prepare life purpose

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Look Through My Eyes

There are things you life, you learning over time you'll see
Cause out there somewhere It's all waiting if you keep believing
so don't run don't hide
It will be alright you'll see trust me
I'll be there watching over you
Just Take a look through my eyes
If there is a little place somewhere out there
Take a look through my eyes
everything changes you'll be amazed what you find
if you look through my eyes
there will be times on this journey what you see is darkness
out there somewhere till it I finds you
If you keep believing
so don't run don't hide
It will be alright you'll see trust me I'll be there watching over you
Just Take a look through my eyes
If there is a little place somewhere out there
Take a look through my eyes
everything changes you'll be amazed what you find
if you look through my eyes
all the things that you can changes
there's a meaning in everything
and you will find all you need
there is so much to understand
Take a look through my eyes
If there is a little place somewhere out there
Take a look through my eyes
everything changes you'll be amazed what you find
if you look through my eyes
Take a look through my eyes
There is a little place somewhere out there
take you look through my eyes
everything changes you'll be amazed what you find
if you look through my eyes
take a look through my eyes

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Knowledge is evolution of thinking and languages over time.

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Intelligent Design

I, dot, would score, scour ocean floor,
you too were dot, not more.
We'd LOOP the LOOP in primaeval soup
our POOL gene POOL core corps.
We'd POLO here, there POLO for
none then knew scoop could droop.
We'd grin, twin core to win encore
no sour sin, hour, no law!
No fairies, flowers' fragrant bower,
nor need, nor greed for power.
No men's omens, hymns, amens dour,
no hymen's Babylonian tower -
no cause because nor clause, paws' claws,
no doors, chores, flaws, no pause.

I'd stoop, you'd swoop, with helluva whoop -
no care, unfair dis....pair.
Above, below, we'd group, regroup
all with no 'mal[e] de mer'.
Amino here, ah me! know there
was troop on troop on troop, -
we'd pair, repair, again prepare
see sea combine with air.

We'd twirl, we'd whirl, like a hoola-hoop
around, around some more,
in tune to moon as cock-a-hoop
we'd twin, to spin restore.
Linked chain would roam upon Time's foam,
off shore s[p]aw[n], sink or soar,
'neath starry dome in mono chrome,
no after, no before!

We'd skirl, we'd swirl, up, down would curl,
ages of practised ease,
we'd furl, unfurl, in endless whorl,
world with no word disease.
When I was girl and you my pearl,

no men, to bend, no knees, -
no need but feed we all agreed
to speed on pretty please!

No peg was round, no hole square found,
when round and round half, whole,
ringed whole half bound by no compound
too stable. Time redoled
quad code surround life force around
niche roles from pole to pole.
Unsound were some, some sound, none crowned
with soul, goal, go[a]d, control.

Inside was outside, outside in,
with no dividing line, -
we'd do without ‘without', ‘within',
but ever intertwine
ignoring every moral gin,
we played both vine and wine,
no angels danced upon a pin,
no hypocrites to whine!

Though question begs, we had no legs,
nor sought to understand, -
we were the dregs from which All pegs
its story book to hand.
We by degrees, through fire and freeze
rose from a twisting band
to all one sees through seven seas
in water, air, and land.

LAYER would RELAY by night and day
Y REAL would, EARLY, wait
in reel we'd feel we'd feel - this way
all could participate.
Blown ONION clone ON I ON loan
ionosphere alone.
No chromosome, no chronos zone,
no wear, no tear, none lone.

We'd dance to chance as all advance
tomorrow WAS SAW today,
electrons free charged you and me
with mission key to play
from cause/effect to Man erect -
elected some would say -
but Man's a phase, an empty phrase
on evolution's way.

BEYOND YE BOND, before spore, frond,
FREE on REEF miocene,
we'd LEAP, PEAL, monde, in ocean, pond,
HOMY? OH MY! what scene!
Both black and blond could thus respond -
back, front, as same was seen -
in rondo fond knew no despond
all were both king and queen.

This VERSES SERVES, through learning curves
TIME'S TIDE DIETS EDITS,
EMITS MITE'S swerves, all ITEMS pervs,
no value judgement sits
on PAST, TAPS nerves with morals verve
refuses to admit.
DEW WED RESERVES surprise deserves
REVERSES SURE, RUSE writ.

AIM I AM splice to WE IS - WISE,
STREAM'S MASTERS all, explored
before lice, rice, mice, pure or vice,
the protein chains which stored
Man's gene device which in a trice
sees stable links restored.
No 'ugly', 'nice' in fire and ice,
religions were abhorred.

Each THREAD no DEARTH of wealth gave Earth,
biodiversity,
chance gifted worth, some death, some birth,
as opportunity
to find true berth, to wind, unearth
niche branches on life's tree -
expanding girth Man calls with mirth
'his' geneology.

In RING we'd GRIN as out and in,
and in and out without
a doubt begin with end, no sin
know - not the slightest doubt.
Win/win we'd spin, ere flesh or fin
food chains devised, we flout
God's origin as Man's odd kin
[r]evolving roundabout.

Ah me! amoeba's form from storm
original to worm
went squiggle wriggle, - then no norm
defined existed - term
invented to give guiding cue
to those whose epiderm
and ethics hairless grew, who'd woo
one sect, one spouse, no germ!

My coil with toil from sea to soil
rose from primaeval beach,
the tide we'd ride - some turned to oil -
to show there's reach in each
to change arrange - styles passing strange -
despite strange Kansas preach.
The basic code stays à la mode
the generations teach...

From ape to man mutating plan
expanded over time,
no date began, none ends the span
as human pantomime
is but a stage which slave and wage
conceived, believed a crime,
but when life's page leads to New Age,
will ever poet rhyme?

Some say through sin redemption win, -
‘intelligent design'
inset to whet hopes thin they pin
on certainty divine
without the which they cannot stitch
through life of strife straight line,
alternate pitch hold poor, not rich,
may compromise set shrine.

Thoughts heretic hold wasting wick
which must itself consume,
to fixed line stick, on others pick
as sentenced to dark tomb.
One truth deduce - Hand did produce
some superhuman loom
and then set loose the sacred goose
to save man from sin's doom.

Who query climb from seabed slime
to homo sapiens
dont care a dime for threats to clime
from man's invasive trends
prefer prime-time's polluted grime -
jest blessed by best 'amens'.
Believe that time through endless time
plays out planned requiems.

At all events some Peter's pence
provide, and daily pray
for guidance whence God's evidence
may spring, sting wayward, gay.
Devoid of sense, 'intelligence'
'divine' they say Man's way,
began, - intense, spare no expense
to show 'design' at play.

Verse worldywise some curse supplies
an overview to plead
that chance suprise from chaos buys
Man, monkey. Key indeed
in deed must rise as acts advise, -
not Acts the future feed, -
not Heaven's skies, but causal ties
think links beyond base crede.

One could flow on but some upon
Earth pan attention span,
feel overdone more words than one! -
hide-bound mind-sets deadpan.
Feel for 'such stuff' four lines enough -
where awe's applause they'd pay.
Through smooth and rough, think groove, act tough
to prove G[o]od's interplay.

Most sit on fence in self-defence,
as arguments they weigh,
to all intents expedience
allows cowards leeway.
Good sense prevents incense pretence, -
who'd welcome overstay?
My pen repents, I fold poor tents,
tip forelock, slip away.


© Jonathan Robin 13 April 2005,16 November 2006,17 August 2008

Verses written 13 April 2005: part 1.2.3 first half 4-8.16.
Verses written 16 November 2006 part 1 3 second half,5.14.15.17-24
Verses written 17 August 2008 part 1 9-13 plus minor revisions

__________

NOTES

Words in CAPITALS: From form morph /loop polo pool... anagrams

Bracketed words s[p]aw[n] have several meanings spawn, pawn, awn, aw(e) , saw, spa span etc

Miocene: Period from 25 million to 13 million years ago; appearance of g[r]azing mammals
____________

Synopsis


This poem traces the evolution from primaeval soup to today through underscoring the world before words and tracing the development of Evolution basic chains
'rose from a twisting band' to the amoeba
'Inside was outside, outside in' to mankind
'from cause/effect to Man erect'
and beyond
'but Man's a phase, an empty phrase
on evolution's way.'
and presents an evolutionary case despite the opinions of the recently defeated Kansas Board of Education anti Darwinian legislation
'despite strange Kansas preach.'

Thus 'From ape to man mutating plan
expanded over time,
no date began, none ends the span
as human pantomime
is but a stage '

and 'Who query climb from seabed slime
to homo sapiens? '
...the poem reiterates the belief
'time through endless time
plays out planned requiems'

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Nevada Mental Institute

Is this really a mental hospital?
It didn't look that way to me
a man in his wheel chair
kept saying this to himself
'O I wish I was never born!
O I wish I was never born! '
Some gaunt apparitions
here and there
minding their own businesses
howling at me
'Stay away! '
Seeing the blood stains
on the carpet floor
I shivered with fear and fright
that they might
devour me and my body
drinking my blood
dripping on the floor
which caused me to refuse
to take any medications
Was nice they didn't impose them on me
simply a shot or two
once in a while
Gosh!
Let me get some sleep
can you stop these women
screaming at nights
in room where I was assigned
to stay and sleep?
Madness drove me to all the way
to that place
though I tried to escape
the hands who put me there
after a long ride to San Francisco
to see the one I wanted to see
but failed to find the person's number
on phone book
for his wife's name was
on the registered
Couldn't keep these followers
from my back
in fear of being murdered
I decided to kill myself
but not with enough money to buy
the twenty-five dolor silver knife
from the shop I visited
during the break of the bus stop
I ran for help
to the law enforcement man
who took me to the hospital
for me to be checked
and eventually
hospitalized
here at the Nevada Mental Institute
'You might hurt yourself.'
It's safer here
no more of murder-fear
no more of followers' torments
but sleep and rest
It was only two weeks' time
but felt like centuries
Mother was wondering where her child
had disappeared to
since the last she contacted her
Never heared from her
was on look out for her
but in no vain
I was still asking the people in that
institute
if this was really mental institute
they say it was
but she didn't believe it
nor could confirm the fact
for they all looked like normal
town people who gathered for the day's town meeting
but they kept saying to me
that it was mental hospital
which I couldn't believe
The night came
and I had to go back to the room
where the apparitions were screaming all night
I decide to stay outside
which the caretaker minded so
'Go back to the room
Go back! '
I didn't listen to her directions
but stayed outside
for the whole night
When the dawn broke
she found me
never having slept for the whole night
thinking those people might
devour me and my body
drinking my blood drip
staining the floor
which was already stained
by someone else's blood
they might have drunk
together as an orgy
a ritual to celebrate the new birth
of being a complete transformation
that had to take place
Being dead and torn apart
and devoured by the members of the ancient sect
one is able to renew its being
like the Greek god Dionysos
Bachus his name was
I had to be devoured by these people
who gathered for the town meeting
to discuss the matter
for that day
I was ready for the ritual
to take place
and be dead and torn a part
so my renewal will follow
but that never happened
to my surprise
people were all at their places
minding their businesses
with a child with mother
with a handicapped man in wheel chair
who kept repeating himself
'O I wish I was never born!
O I wish I was never born! '
You have a dillusionary hallucination
The doctors told me
that was my diagnosis
but what is it?
No idea
anyway the diagnosis is over
and I refuse still to take medications
A girl who was sweet to me all through
showed me how to swallow pills
doctors prescribed her
and I do know how to swallow pills
but I wouldn't do that
for that will keep me to sleep
and they will eat my meat and drink
my blood staining the floor with my blood
shed and dripped
I fear these women gaunt
approaching me with their silence
Taught me how to wash hands clean
how to clean face clean
They themselves were also not that clean
either though
they showed me the step by step
processes to clean and wash my hands and face
It was late fall
with trees turning their leaves red and yellow
I missed my home
chilly fall seasons when the trees change
their colors leaves fall on streets
Mother still couldn't locate the girl lost
and she gave up on finding her
Looking out the window
to see all the tree leaves changed into red and yellow
I sighed
when I would go home?
Would that time will arrive
or would I be murdered here
and be eaten by these strange people
and disappear from this planet?
The caretaker Richard was playing the zig saw puzzle game
and he was very good at it
2: 48 pm
(November 22,2012)
I was watching him play the puzzle game
just as I was watching over these kids
play chess game during their learning class time
their minds were being practiced by
the game playing and thaw out the wrong
that have been done unto their system that made
the kids learning disabled
it was not about learning but
about the system that got them
crooked and wronged in their processing
of the information that was coming into their perceptions
Old people deny the truth
the young want to confront the truth
but not many are courageous enough to
admit that they were wrong and they were
not in the right path in dealings with these minds
so artistic were the learning disabled students
share the extreme sensibility that no minds
could have ever experienced
They wrote poems songs plays and
newspaper articles and did some
creative things but their system was
wronged by the wrong information process system
The victims of the system were all gathered in my
Special Education classes
wanting to learn their way
but the schools didn't know how to educate them
how to meet their needs
to challenge them in a way they can
truly learn the lessons in their lives
That's what these doctors were doing with me
in each session
probing and inquiring my modes and my motives
for doing the things I was doing with my life
and my thinking..
Why did you not apply for the citizenship?
Does this mean you don't want to accept the main stream
of the United States of America?
Do they want me to lose my nationality
and become totally devoted to their nation
The USA?
What did they say that for?
It was so funny I thought these people
who followed me got mad at me
for I didn't apply for the citizenship to conform
to the main stream America.
Was I to say sorry that I didn't?
Was I supposed to get the citizenship once I become
the permanent residence of the USA?
Am I that needed quality that they impose me
to become the USA citizen for I was not
and that might have offended them a lot
So I feel I have to explain why I am not
a citizen of the USA
to the people who seemed quite upset with me
so to appease them I told the doctors
I might apply for the citizenship
for I was half committed to the nation
who hosted me for the last 8 years
but I didn't want to lose my nationality
as a Korean and didn't want to be one of the
immigrants losing their faces and histories
and their names none of them attracted me
So I have said to the doctors
I might apply for the citizenship
to appease them and make them not so offended
what I am in the country of the dream land
where many new comers are actually
making their way up to the ladder
to reach the American dreams
and I have to defend my self
for not applying for the citizenship
if I didn't they would kill me and murder me
that was a horror
to see these people around me seeing me
as a foreigner not quite part of the
American scene
Anyway there came the time that
made me discharged from the hospital
after moving onto to the next ward
more peaceful and more friendly
Could get to talk to some people
around the table
could get some night sleeps
and the time that felt like centuries
actually two weeks was over
and I was headed for home
That caretaker Richard, bless his soul,
spared his $20.00 for me to use
on my way back to home
It was a sheer donation he gave
out of his own pocket
that I will never forget
and safely home voyage made
and them back to my home country
to the loving family and country of my own
I never wanted to abandon my nationality
as a Korean
and never really wanted to be a part of the
American scene
not quite my style though
so I began writing poems after poems
upon arrival in my country
and here I am now telling you
the story of my own
how I became to know the verses
and the skills I always had been
envying in others who did a good job on
doing it...
got a good job working at a college
teaching the young
finding the proper accommodation
and commuting back and forth from
Seoul to the small town
where the college was located
which was a big inspiration for me
to meet the young minds face to face
on daily basis learning their
learning style developing the right instruction
that might suit them learn better
This has been going on for 15 years
now as of today
The new language they spoke was so refreshning
in me that resonated the long gone memories
that I had forgotten
and new language with a new life began
with this job assignment
I got at this college
yet still being challenged by the
past experiences and memories
that don't go away out of my mind
that will keep ringing
in my ears and brain to teach the good lesson
they can teach
Education is the ability to enable a person
to listen and understand the others
without losing their temper
the calm and serene mode of thinking comes
only from the proper education
to listen and understand what others are
saying to them
This writing of poems is also an art
that requires that kind of attention
to draw the attention of the readers
who are tuned in
what the poet is telling them about
so the connection between the writer and the reader
has to be established
and foremost of all
the freedom to speak out what one has
in mind
the place where they can express themselves
in free mode of consciousness
all these come from the true
democratic society where the nation Korea
didn't have when I left the peninsula
some 13 years before the time
Thoughts were strictly controlled
and the expression of one's feelings and minds
are extremely limited and banned
almost
from I which I found an exile
in some other country for that period
of time
No body knew I was on exile
even myself
until one man asked me if I was on exile
then I realized that it was an exile
long way from home
to renew my new interiority
new paradigm of thinking and feeling
Thanks to the doctors at this
institute
I was finally able to gather
information on me and my processing information
channels
which helped me understand where I stood
in two different societies
By stating this facts
I am no longer compelled
to feel obligated to assimilate to any
nation nor pressure to have to explain what my doings
and sayings and writings
Finally the nation was allowing me to speak
what I want to say
before I was banned to write to the
college newspapers
for my thoughts were too radical
and my papers were mostly
not published for my thoughts
could have offended the school officials
Wow you are bright!
Wow you are bright!
Those empty praises usually followed
after my papers were denied
publications
They would rather go along with the
system that suppressed the freedom of speech
wanted to remain in the safe side
while I had to suffer the unnecessary
unworthiness and low self-esteem
their praises didn't help me to get over
the damages they had done on me
but I persisted and endured the crushing down
on free thoughts and expressions
only through some healing that took place
prior to that time
I was finally able to see the truth
directly on their faces
and face it more gracefully
without much emotional turmoils
nor unnecessary crushing down on self
It was my exile that I took
to get over the wounds the society had done
to me
with so many angelic hands helping me
assisting me
with their warm family members
How can I not remember the ones I met
on the road to heal and cure myself
and eventually return my gratitudes back to them
whenever the chances came to me
Life is in good hands now
and I no longer have to suffer
for the truth stays in me
from now on.

7: 09 am
(November 23,2012)
Korea-Japan time

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A Map Of Culture

Culture


Contents

What is Culture?

The Importance of Culture

Culture Varies

Culture is Critical

The Sociobiology Debate

Values, Norms, and Social Control

Signs and Symbols

Language

Terms and Definitions

Approaches to the Study of Culture

Are We Prisoners of Our Culture?



What is Culture?


I prefer the definition used by Ian Robertson: 'all the shared products of society: material and nonmaterial' (Our text defines it in somewhat more ponderous terms- 'The totality of learned, socially transmitted behavior. It includes ideas, values, and customs (as well as the sailboats, comic books, and birth control devices) of groups of people' (p.32) .

Back to Contents


The Importance of Culture


The concepts, culture and society are closely related. Culture is defined as all the products of society- material and nonmaterial; Society consists of interacting people living in the same territory who share a common culture. We really can't have one without the other (unless you want to call archaeological remains and historical records 'culture') . People in society create culture; culture shapes the way people interact and understand the world around them.

Culture determines what we know- the sum of all the angles in a triangle; what a screw driver is used for; how to use a computer to find out where Peloponnesians are...

Culture also determines what we don't know- how to catch a fish by hand; how to build a dugout canoe and navigate the South Seas without chart or compass.

Culture determines what we want to be- lawyer; dairy farmer; computer programmer; doctor; shaman; pearl diver



Culture Varies


It varies with the physical setting or geography: (A good example here is music. Think of all the differences in music that are related to geography. We're a mixed society in the United States, but think of the regional origins of much of our our music: Clogging in Tennessee; Cajun music (Zydeko) in Louisiana; City music vs. Country/Western Music, etc.)

It also varies with time: Have you ever tried to read Beowulf; Shakespeare; work a slide rule; drive a buggy; understand Victorian morality and ethics? I asked my young daughter if she wanted to go to a record store. 'What's a record? ', she asked. (Her generation has been exposed only to tapes and CDs) .

Think of culture as a stream flowing down through the centuries from one generation to another. Each generation contributes something to this stream, but in each generation something is left behind, some sediment drops to the bottom and is lost to society, (Bierstedt) . Examples of things lost to society the art of stained glass window making, violin making (The greatest violins ever produced by man were made in Cremona, Northern Italy in the mid 16th century) . (Science 84 5: 2 pp 3643) .

Culture is Critical to the Survival of Human Race


Because of the nature of the animal that we are. Unlike most animals that are specially adapted to the environment in which they live, we lack special physical characteristics such as long fangs, sharp teeth, claws, fur, feathers, or scales; or even physiological behavior patterns such as hibernation, to enable us to survive in a hostile environment. But, like the higher primates, (which we are one type of) , we share a number of important characteristics:

Characteristics of all primates:

Sociable: (Primates are gregarious and like to be in groups)
Smart: (large brain/body weight ratio) Humans' brains are most complex.
Sensitive hands: (All primates have an opposing thumb) .
Sound: (Primates are extremely vocal) .
Stand: (All primates can assume an erect posture which frees the hands):

Biological characteristics possessed by humans, alone:

Sex and Mating: (Year around mating- Unlike other primates, we lack a special breeding season. This, has important implications for gender roles) .
Schooling: (The young have a long period of dependence on adults. This also has implications for gender roles) .
Symbolic Speech: (Although there are numerous examples of chimpanzees being taught to use symbols to communicate, humans alone have developed a highly complex system of symbolic speech) .
Locomotion: (Humans alone, walk erect) .

Humans possess a highly developed, complex brain, which allows us to communicate symbolically, to learn quickly, and to innovate. We lack instincts (or if they do exist they are not readily apparent) . It is our culture that enables us to survive as a species. Culture provides answers to such basic problems as finding shelter, food, and clothing. Culture provides guidance for our every day lives; social organization which keeps us from tearing each other apart.

Every generation has to learn from scratch the culture of its society or it will perish. All the basic institutions of society that we discussed earlier; the economy, education, religion, recreation, politics represent needs that society must meet. Ways of meeting these needs are handed down from one generation to the next. They represent our culture. What we lack in physical attributes and strength, we make up for in our ability to communicate and learn culture from one generation to the next.

This, in my opinion, is precisely why Sociology is so important. It's humankind's almost total reliance upon socially transmitted patterns of behavior that enable it to survive. Society and culture are the subject matter of Sociology.


The Sociobiology Debate

There is a school of thought, Sociobiology, which sees much of human behavior as being instinctual. Sociologists generally hold that culture evolved (or developed) due to the influence of values (ideas) or due to changes in the material base of society (technology fire, the wheel, the computer) . They usually argue that biology (genetic programming) has a limited role. Sociobiologists, claim that human culture and social behavior derive from a process of natural selection and genetic transmission. Our genes predispose us to certain patterns of behavior unique from other animals. Sociobiologists support their argument by citing a number of 'cultural universals' found in all societies. They say that this is evidence of the influence of genetic factors. Examples have been drawn from the work of anthropologist, George Murdock (1945) who argued that all societies demonstrated some form of the following:

athletic sports

laws

bodily adornment

medicine

cooking (meal preparation)

incest taboos

cooperative labor

music

courtship

myths

dancing

num erals

dream analysis

personal names

family feasting

property rights

folk law

sexual restrictions

funeral ceremonies

religion

food taboos

toilet training

games

tool making

gift giving

weather making

Sociobiologists argue that human behavior ultimately is derived from our biology rather than learning. According to Murdock, all societies have incest taboos. Why? One biological argument would be that in-breeding can produce genetic defects, or that it may reinforce undesirable traits (such as hemophilia or mental instability) . Incest taboos force a group to broaden its gene pool which reduces the probability of passing along 'dysfunctional' traits. One could apply this argument to the Catholic Church: By forbidding priests and nuns to marry, it forced the recruitment of individuals from outside the church to keep the gene pool fresh. (This would prevent the formation of 'religious royal families' and the decline of the faith when a feeble minded monarch emerged) .

But there are problems with this argument. Referring to incest: Why is incest defined differently from one society to another? The range of variation is tremendous! Some societies have allowed marriage between brothers and sisters. Others forbid it between relatives closer than first cousins. Still others have restrictions going out even further; requiring individuals to marry outside the tribe. If there is a genetic basis for the incest taboo, why is there so much variation? Another point is that just as 'dysfunctional traits' can be reinforced through inbreeding; so can 'desirable' characteristics. (Dog breeders and horse breeders do this very thing) .

If everything were programmed genetically, we would expect to see little variation across societies in the way people handled the affairs of their everyday lives. But there are tremendous differences in...

the sports that we play and the way we play them
the families that we form and the ways we form them
the various ways in which we court our spouses
the friends we make and the way we make them
the tools we make and how we use them
the languages we invent and the way we speak them
the food we eat and how we eat it
the religions we form and how we practice them
the laws and customs we make and how we observe them.

The key point is that this behavior is learned. Humans can change culture without changing genes. Biology sets the stage by giving us unique capabilities that distinguish us from other species; culture determines how we use those unique capabilities.


Values, Norms, and Social Control

Values are socially shared ideas about what is 'right' and 'wrong; ' 'good' and 'bad' in society. Values are general ideas- broad and abstract. They vary from one society to another and one way to study society is to examine the values held by its members. Values are important because it is from them that we derive the norms or rules that govern our everyday lives. Values help guide conduct in unfamiliar situations and may lead to the formation of specific norms. Generally speaking, we tend to hold on to our values and are unlikely to compromise them. American values have been intensively studied by numerous scholars:

American values (Robin Williams) :

achievement and success

freedom

activity and work

conformity

humanitarianism

science/technology

progress

nationalism/patriotism

material comfort

democracy

efficiency/p racticality

individualism

equality

racial/ethnic superiority

American values (Talcott Parsons) :

instrumental activism

maximization of opportunity for individuals and sub collectives

progress

pragmatic acceptance of authority

economic production

objection to pretensions of generalized superiority of status

technology and science

Individuals as well as entire societies may experience value conflict. A great example of value conflict at the individual level is provided by the 1941 movie, 'Sergeant York, ' (starring Gary Cooper) . The movie tells the story of Alvin Cullum York, regarded as one of the outstanding heroes of World War I, who was awarded the Congressional Medal of Honor for killing 20 enemy soldiers and capturing over 100 prisoners. At first, York was a conscientious objector who held deep religions convictions against killing. The value conflict in this case involved the Sixth Commandment's prohibition against killing and what he felt were his duties as a patriotic American- to answer his country's call. Cooper, who won an Oscar for his portrayal of Sgt. York, did a wonderful job showing how individuals 'freeze up' and are unable to do anything until they resolve these kinds of internal value conflicts.

One very powerful example of a value conflict at the societal level is the current debate over abortion. Values are not readily compromised and it is often impossible to find 'common ground' in these kinds of disputes. The debate over slavery and states' rights in the 1850s is an example of a value conflict that was eventually resolved through war- the bloodiest war in this nation's history. The deplorable state of affairs we are now observing in what was formerly Yugoslavia, is essentially another value conflict.


Norms are derived from a society's overall values. Values determine norms. Remember, norms are classified into several types.

Folkways (weak norms customs, etiquette; three meals a day, wearing shoes to class, tipping after a meal, taking same seat in class)
Mores (strong norms considered vital to our well-being, values, morals; cheating on spouse, child abuse and murder)
Laws (Norms established and punished by the state with punishments fixed in advance: written or encoded mores, folkways, and taboos; from traffic laws to laws against rape and murder) .
Taboos (Very strong norms whose violation is considered loathsome and disgusting)

Social Control is the means by which society ensures that its members follow approved norms. Norms are supported by sanctions- positive and negative; formal and informal; which are used to bring people into line.

Informal:
Positive (informal) sanction: give child a candy bar for behaving
Negative (informal) sanction: give a child a stern look for talking in church
Formal:
Positive (formal) sanction: combat soldier gets Congressional Medal of Honor for heroism
Negative (formal) sanction: person gets speeding ticket for doing 56 mph in a 55 mph zone

Back to Contents

Signs and Symbols

There is an important difference between signs and symbols that you should know. Symbols set man apart from animals. Animals use signs.

Signs are representational: There is a direct connection between the sign and the reality it refers to. The meaning is clear and unambiguous. Sort of like stimulus and response. There is no need to interpret meanings.

Smoke indicates that fire is present (or will soon be present)
The family dog scratches the door to the back yard- It wants to go outside. It gets its bowl- It wants food. (The bowl is directly related to food) . It lays down belly-up- It displays submission.

Symbols are interpretative:

A symbol is an object, gesture, sound, color, or design which stands for something other than itself. We humans give meaning to these things. Examples- wedding band; leather jacket; sports car; the length and color of a person's hair; (punk rockers; T.V. ministries where people are neatly dressed; flag burnings) . Symbols may have multiple meanings. Example- the cross on a church steeple; a burning cross; a red cross on the side of an ambulance. (A smile can take on many different meanings) . Symbols can change meaning over time. Example- 'V' sign was once obscene. It stood for victory in World War II. During the Vietnam War it meant peace. Symbols are capable of stirring up deep emotions. In the debate over abortion, individuals don't classify themselves as 'pro' or 'anti' abortion. Rather, they use the terms 'pro-choice', or 'pro-life'- 'choice' and 'life' are two important values in U.S. society. People often disagree over whether or not a symbol is appropriate for a given place or circumstance. Several years ago, there was much debate over whether or not McDonalds' 'golden arches, ' an internationally recognized symbol in its own right, should be displayed so prominently over the VCU Student Commons' entrances. Eventually, the arches were taken down.


Language

Most people feel that language is unique to human beings. Other species use signs with genetically fixed meanings and can learn to respond to specified stimuli- (Pavlov's dogs salivating at the ring of a bell) - but only humans can be said to have language. Language consists primarily of verbal and written symbols with rules for putting them together. (Language also consists of the nonverbal expressions which accompany speech in face-to-face interaction. Raising an eyebrow or winking an eye often relays more meaning than a hundred words. We can therefore modify our definition to include 'verbal, visual, and written symbols and their associated rules for putting them together.'

Is language really unique to humans? There are a number of very interesting studies that suggest that certain animals have a highly developed capacity for language. Click on the links, below for some serious and scholarly references on animal communication.

§ Birds

§ Chimpanzees

§ Gorillas

This next site has some interesting material on

§ Dolphins and Whales



Language is truly the 'keystone to culture' for without it, we could not pass on the collective experience of society and the lessons it teaches for survival. It is the primary way that we pass on our culture from one generation to the next. It enables us to store meanings so we don't have to relearn everything with each generation.
Language allows us to create worlds we've never seen and develop new ideas to explain the world around us. A good example is atomic theory. Before the advent of the scanning electron microscope men had predicted the existence of atoms and molecules using the symbols of language. Language also allows us to develop new ideas to apply to the future.
George Orwell realized the importance of language in his epic work,1984. Why did the rulers of Oceania develop 'Newspeak'? They wanted to restrict the creative ability of humankind so they wouldn't have the concepts of freedom, free enterprise, individuality. 'The purpose of newspeak was not only to provide a medium of expression for the worldview and mental habits proper to devotees of Ingsoc, but to make all other modes of thought impossible.' (Orwell, p.246)

The SapirWhorf Hypothesis states that language not only reproduces our ideas, but it also shapes the way we think. It orders our reality. It may prevent people from being aware of things in the environment and focuses our attention on certain things. Examples:

Sexist language shapes our thinking about women. Coaches who ridiculed male players when they weren't playing well by calling them ladies? Language that treats women as objects; 'chick, fox, babe, hot cakes, skirts, etc. will tend to make us think of women as objects, not people.
Racist language, ethnic language; Micks, Spicks, Whops, Pollocks, Degos, Ollies, etc. tend to lower our image of people.
Color: The human eye can discern thousands of different shades of color, yet in our society we identify only 6 to 8 particular ones. A tribe in New Guinea breaks colors into categories of 'warm' and 'cold' (so much for the science of spectroscopy in that society) !
The Eskimos have many different words for snow. Unless we ski a lot, most of us use one- 'snow.'
Christian missionaries in Hawaii were shocked to find no word or concept for sin.
In (North) American society, we tend to treat physical objects as if they had wills of their own. If a pen rolls off a table, we'll say 'It fell off.' or 'It rolled off the table and fell on the floor.' The Russian culture works differently. Their response would be something like 'They did it.' or 'They caused it to fall on the floor.'

Are we slaves to our language? The language we speak predisposes us to see the world in certain ways, but language is extremely flexible. As we find ourselves lacking words to describe new ideas, machines, processes, and technologies, we coin new terms and phrases. 'Black holes, ' 'Quarks, ' and even 'Supply side economics, ' are all creations of the mind and examples showing where language has lagged behind conceptual ideas in the mind.


Terms and Definitions


Related terms and definitions:

Cultural universals: These imply practices common to every culture. We've already discussed the Anthropologist, George Murdock's proposed list of general traits found in every culture. It seems that there are a large number of very general traits common to all cultures, but no specific ones like what, exactly, defines murder, incest, etc. in a society?
Ethnocentrism: This is the tendency to judge other cultures by the standards of our own. ('Body Ritual Among the Nacirema') .
Cultural relativism: The recognition that one culture cannot be arbitrarily judged by the standards of another. We need to adopt this stance when studying other cultures.
Cultural Integration: Culture is not a random assemblage of skills, customs, values, and beliefs. These elements are woven into a definite pattern and are somehow related to one another.
Cultural Diversity: Common culture gives us a sense of identity but there is a great deal of variation among groups. We witness cultural diversity on both the international and national levels. We've already talked about regional differences when we compared the North with the South in the United States.
Subcultures: Within a culture there may exist groups of people who have their own distinct sets of values, customs, and lifestyles. (Italian Americans, African Americans, Catholics, Protestants, Jews, the young, the middle-aged, the old, etc.) . We can even say that there is a subculture of college life.
Countercultures: a counterculture that is fundamentally at odds with the dominant culture. (The youth movement of the 1960's, for example) .
Real and Ideal culture: Ideal culture is what the values say we believe in, what we should practice, while real culture is what actually exists. Often there is a discrepancy between the two resulting in cultural strain.

Approaches to the Study of Culture

There are several approaches to the study of culture. Here are two examples:

Functionalism looks at the roles that components of culture play in maintaining the social order as a whole. What are the consequences for a society if we remove or change one element of its culture? (i.e. in America, the computer) . The problem with this approach is that it tends to overlook change when stressing the functional relationships between variables. It also has a pejorative or negative view of unbalance in the system, even when such unbalance may mean social improvement.

.

The Ecological approach examines the culture of a given society in relation to the total environment in which it exists. For example, why do people in India let sacred cows roam the streets by the millions (100 million) when so many people are hungry? One reason is that cows are needed to produce the oxen which Indian farmers must have to plow the fields. Without them, even more people will starve. Also, the cows produce over 700 million tons of manure each year. Half of it is used for fertilizer; the other half is used for fuel. When the cows die, they are eaten by the untouchables or outcasts who are the hungriest people in the population. The cows' hides are used in the leather industry.



Are we prisoners of our Culture?

No. Culture does make humans what they are, but humans also make culture. We constantly make changes to our culture. It guides us through life, but we also change and modify it to our needs and desires. If we could not do this, everything would be the same from generation to generation just like the bees and termites. It's hard for 2. Processes of cultural change: Cultural change is usually slow and deliberate. When changes occur in one cultural element (the economy) changes can be expected elsewhere (politics) . Things generally tend to be linked together.

There are three mechanisms by which cultural change occurs:

Discovery the perception or recognition of something that already exists- fire, the New World.
Invention combining old knowledge to produce something that did not exist before, the compass, for example.
Diffusion the spread of cultural elements from one culture to another. i.e. gun powder from China to the West. Most cultural change occurs in this manner- (Linton's 'One hundred Percent American' article) .

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A Tale Of True Love

Not in the mist of legendary ages,
Which in sad moments men call long ago,
And people with bards, heroes, saints, and sages,
And virtues vanished, since we do not know,
But here to-day wherein we all grow old,
But only we, this Tale of True Love will be told.

For Earth to tender wisdom grows not older,
But to young hearts remains for ever young,
Spring no less winsome, Winter winds no colder,
Than when tales first were told, songs first were sung.
And all things always still remain the same,
That touch the human heart, and feed Love's vestal flame.

And, if you have ears to hear and eyes for seeing,
Maidens there be, as were there in your youth,
That round you breathe, and move, and have their being,
Fair as Greek Helen, pure as Hebrew Ruth;
With Heaven-appointed poets, quick to sing
Of blameless warrior brave, and wisdom-counselled king.

And, tho' in this our day, youth, love, and beauty,
Are far too often glorified as slave
Of every sense except the sense of Duty,
In fables that dishonour and deprave,
The old-world Creeds still linger, taught us by
The pious lips that mute now in the churchyard lie.

And this true simple tale in verse as simple
Will from its prelude to its close be told,
As free from artifice as is the dimple
In childhood's cheek, whereby is age consoled.
And haply it may soothe some sufferer's lot,
When noisier notes are husht, and newer ones forgot.

And think not, of your graciousness, I pray you,
Who tells the tale is one of those who deem
That love will beckon only to betray you,
Life an illusion, happiness a dream;
Only that noble grief is happier far
Than transitory lusts and feverish raptures are.

It was the season when aggressive Winter,
That had so long invested the sealed world,
With frosts that starve and hurricanes that splinter,
And rain, hail, blizzard, mercilessly hurled,
Made one forlorn last effort to assail
Ere Spring's relieving spears came riding on the gale.

For Amazonian March with breast uncovered
Blew loud her clarion, and the wintry host
Took courage fresh and lingeringly hovered
Round vale and hill, wherever needed most;
And ever and anon the raging weather
And wolfish winds re-formed, and onward swept together,

Loud-bellowing to the thunder-clouds to follow:
But all in vain, for here, there, everywhere,
Primrose battalions, seizing ridge and hollow,
Dingle, and covert, wind-flowers wild that dare
Beyond their seeming, bluebells without sound,
And scentless violets peeped, to spring up from the ground.

And, covering their advance, swift-scouring showers,
Gathering, dispersing, skirmished through the sky,
Till squadrons of innumerable flowers
Thronged through the land far as you could descry.
Then Winter, smitten with despair and dread,
Folded his fluttering tents, sounded retreat, and fled.

Whereat the land, so long beleaguered, seeing
The peril past, and Winter's iron ring
Broken, and all his cohorts norward fleeing,
Came forth to welcome and embrace the Spring,
Spring the Deliverer, and from sea and shore
Rose the rejoicing shout, ``See, April dawns once more!''

Radiant she came, attended by her zephyrs,
And forth from dusky stall and hurdled fold
Poured lowing kine and sleeky-coated heifers,
To roam at will through pastures green and gold,
Where unweaned lambs from morning until night
Raced round their nibbling dams, and frolicked with delight.

High up, on larch and cypress, merle and mavis
Vociferated love-lays sweet as strong,
And the bird dear to Homer and to Hafiz
Proclaimed the joy of sadness all night long;
Vowed each new Spring more Spring-like than the last,
And triumphed over Time, futile iconoclast.

Then imperceptibly and slowly rounded
Slim girlish April into maiden May,
Whereat still louder everywhere resounded
The cuckoo's call and throstle's roundelay.
It was as though in meadow, chase, and wood,
God made the world anew, and saw that it was good.

Then feudal Avoncourt, the stern and stately,
Whose dawn deep hidden in undated days,
Not like those palaces erected lately
Whose feet swift crumble, and whose face decays,
Defieth Time's insatiable tooth,
Relaxed grave gaze and wore the countenance of youth.

It had beheld kings and proud empires vanish,
Male sceptres shattered, princedoms pass away,
Norman, Plantagenet, Lombard, Swabian, Spanish,
Rise, rule, then totter, and topple from their sway;
York and Lancastrian Rose unfold and bloom,
Then canker and decay, and vanish in the tomb.

It faces the four winds with like demeanour
Norward as Southernward, as though to say,
``Blow from some other, stronger and still keener,
Wherefrom you will, and I will face that way.''
And round it as you roam, to gaze perplexed
Each side seems loveliest till you look upon the next.

Its present seeming unto ages Tudor
It owes, by unnamed, unknown hands designed,
Who planned and worked amid a folk deemed ruder,
But who with grace enduring strength combined.
Like sturdy oak with all its leaves still on,
When foliage from elm and sycamore have gone.

Upon its delicate, lofty-jutting portal
Imaginative minds and hands have wrought
Of dead artificers once deemed immortal,
From Southern climes by kings and magnates brought,
When architects and sculptors smiled in scorn
On plain defensive days and called the world reborn.

But time hath mellowed mullion, roof, and gable,
Stone-work without, and wainscotting within;
And nigh them oaken-timbered barn and stable,
Lowlier, withal of countenance akin,
Cluster, for in times olden, meek, and proud,
Being nearer much than now, their kinship was avowed.

From it slope woodlands and long alleys shaded,
Saving that all around it and more near
Stretches wild chase by ploughshare uninvaded,
Where roam rough cattle and unherded deer,
That look up as you pass from brackened sod,
Then flee with step as fleet as that whereon they trod.

Through vale below from many a source unfailing
A river flows where deft hands cast the line,
Well stocked with wary trout and bolder grayling.
Through smooth, fat pastures dotted o'er with kine
League after league the water winds away,
Oft turning as though loth from Avoncourt to stray.

It was in the sweet season that hath ravished
The virgin heart since ever love began,
A maiden, upon whom had Nature lavished
Each fair gift given to maiden or to man,
Roamed all alone through windings of its wood,
Seeking the way to where Avoncourt haply stood.

Onward in search of it she went, but slowly,
For who could hasten through so fresh a scene,
With violets paved, the lovelier because lowly,
And pallid primroses on ground of green;
While overhead each bird that hath a voice
Seemed in its own blithe notes to revel and rejoice.

And ever and anon she gazed around her,
Or knelt to gather some appealing flower,
And to dear God, the Father and the Founder
Of all things good, the all-protecting Power,
Breathed a brief prayer of thanks within her breast,
Feeling she roamed in Heaven on earth made manifest.

Sometimes she broke into spontaneous singing,
Such as fond nurse to fretful babe might sing,
Whose close as sudden is as its beginning.
Herself she seemed a portion of the Spring
Which, if she went, would lose the chiefest part
Of that which charms the gaze and captivates the heart.

At length she passed from out these paths embowered
To where meek does, young fawns, and shaggy beeves
Ranged amid bracken; but the House, that towered
Full nigh at hand, for intercepting leaves
She still descried not, so, advancing under
An arch of hornbeam, stood in husht, astonied wonder.

For there it rose as silent and abstracted
As though it nothing shared or had to say
With those that shadow-like have lived and acted
Upon the stage we call our later day;
From passing passions thoughtfully aloof,
Through age, not pride, without lamenting or reproof.

Then slowly timid, tentative explorer,
Longing to see yet dreading to be seen,
Asudden living figure rose before her
Of manly mould and meditative mien;
Modern, withal with air of ancient port,
As if the same blood flowed through him and Avoncourt.

``Forgive,'' she said, ``an overbold intruder!''
``I doubt if anywhere you would intrude;
But sooth none do on this survival Tudor,
Who visit its old age in reverent mood.''
``And that indeed I do. I never saw
Aught that I so admired, or felt for so much awe.''

``Will you, I round it willingly can guide you,
Unless-and, told, shall fully understand,-
Wander you rather would with none beside you
To mar the silence of the windless land,
Saving Spring's choristers, whose constant trills
One hears or doth not hear, according as one wills.''

``You know it well?'' she asked. ``I ought to know it.
Here was I born, here grew to boy's estate,
Pored o'er the page of storier and poet,
All that is big, magnanimous, and great,
Hardened my own, tried my dear Mother's nerves,
Robbed the home orchard, poached my Father's own preserves.''

``And are you now its occupant and possessor?''
``So called, alas! whose ancestors have paid
The final tax, by Death the stern assessor
On all poor mortals equitably laid.
I have a leasehold; no one can have more,
This side at least the vague, still-undiscovered shore.''

Thereat there fell a silence on their speaking,
And on they moved, he follower more than guide;
Oblivious she what 'twas that she was seeking,
Since conscious now of manhood at her side.
Withal, so much there was to lure her gaze,
That his on her could rest, nor stint its look of praise.

Then when they reached the Jacobean portal,
Back rolled its doors of iron brace and stay,
On grooves that seemed more cut for feet immortal
Than for a feeble transitory day,
And mounted oaken stair axe-hewn, unplaned,
With lion-headed piers unpolished and unstained.

From coffered ceiling hung down tattered banners,
And weapons warlike deadly deemed no more
Were parked on landing; grants of ancient manors,
With charts and parchments of black-letter lore,
Stacked spears and dinted armour; ebon presses
With jealous bolts stood locked in embrasured recesses.

Chamber on chamber wainscotted and spacious
Was lined with effigies of warriors wise,
Reticent rulers, dames revered and gracious,
Whose fingers wove the silken tapestries,
Time-toned but faded not, that draped the wall
Of gallery long and straight, and square-set banquet-hall.

About lay obsolete instruments, wheel and spindle,
When women read much less and knew much more,
Huge logs for early-rising maids to kindle
On deep-set hearths, mottoes of lasting lore
In ancient tongues, Norman, or Saxon stave,
Bidding man live and die, meek, pious, steadfast, brave.

And many a question asked she, always getting
The answer craved for, given prompt and plain.
``But look,'' she said, ``the sun will soon be setting,
And that old dial-hand that doth nor gain
Nor lose, I am sure, in its diurnal pace,
Reproves me I still lag in this enthralling place.''

``Then come again,'' he answered, ``at your leisure,''
And led her outward where the ancient pile
Looked as though dwelt within no special treasure,
And owned no spell nor charm save sunset's smile;
Like one of those large natures that betray
No sign that they are made of more than common clay.

``And may I ask, your homeward footsteps, whither?
What! there! it is on Avoncourt estate,
And I by shorter path can guide you thither
Than that you came by, fear you to be late.
You lodge with much-loved tenants, for the wife
My foster-parent was in rosy-dawning life.''

``She did not tell me that; but sooth our meeting
Was but two days back, though I quickly saw
That she for you would evermore be bleating
With voice of blent solicitude and awe.''
``'Tis so: on Sundays with a spirit meek
She worships God, then me the rest of all the week.''

Wending and winding under curved ways shaded,
Wider than heretofore, they farmward trod,
While twilight incense all the air pervaded
Round flower-decked altar at the shrine of God,
This sacred Earth, and for approaching night
One star kept watch, as yet Heaven's only lamp alight.

To her it seemed the Real and Ideal
At last were one, and every bird that sings
Joined prayerfully in chorus hymeneal,
Ere folding music underneath its wings.
How little did she guess that ambushed grief
Watched all her thoughts and lurked 'neath every dewy leaf!

``Are both your parents at the farmstead staying?''
``Alas!'' she said, ``like yours, they both abide
My coming further off, and in my praying
Alone survive; my guardian and my guide
My Mother's sister, whom we there shall find,
Most loving and most loved of living womankind.''

Where buttressed Church with crenellated Tower
Over the village still kept watch and ward;
``For these,'' he said, ``inherited have that power,
The pious citadels of peace that guard
The sin-beleaguered soul, and still repel
From humble homes and hearts the ravening hosts of hell.''

Within were monuments of home-delved marble,
Whereon lay figures of his race and name,
Crusaders whose dead deeds no time can garble,
Learning destroy, malignity defame:
Legs crossed, feet resting against faithful hound,
And, at their side, their dames and children kneeling round.

Then would they wend them valeward to the river,
And he cast line that neither curled nor sank.
Round ran the reel, then the lithe rod would quiver,
And May-fly trout lie gasping on the bank,
Or, like a flying shadow through the stream,
Startled, would pass to pool sheltered from noonday gleam.

Which pleased her most, for sooth she thought sport cruel,
Yet watched it for the sake of his rare skill,
But happiest when asudden wingèd jewel,
The king-fisher, disturbed near rustic mill,
Darted, and deep into its nest withdrew,
Shortly to issue forth, and, flickering, raid anew.

So passed the days unnoticed and uncounted,
As louder, longer, later, piped the merle,
And cuckoo oftener called, if harsher throated,
And hawthorn decked itself with loops of pearl.
It seemed a world reborn without its woes:
Woodbine was in the lanes, and everywhere the rose.

All things that are in that seductive season
In them struck root and with them got entwined;
Looking before or after had seemed treason
To the free heart and unconditioned mind,
As daily tightened beyond time's control
That strongest of all ties, the kinship of the soul.

And deeper into bliss they wandered blindly,
While woe and wet winds kept from them aloof,
As from screened homestead visitings unkindly,
Where old-world windows under gabled roof
Seem gazing at the present from the past,
And wondering how long such happiness will last.

Ah me! the days of Summer, not of Winter,
The shortest are and swiftest glide away,
And leaves of Autumn, sober mezzotinter,
Linger far longer than the blooms of May.
Time that, when fledged by joy, finds wings to fly,
With sorrow for its load limps slowly, wearily.

One evening, as they watched the sunset fading,
``To strangers Avoncourt must never pass,
For that would be dishonouring and degrading,''
Thinking aloud he said: ``withal, alas!
Sit by its hearth they must, and much I fear
That there they must abide for many a coming year.

``No fault of mine nor yet of those now sleeping
In tombs ancestral. Unrelenting time,
That hath the future in its unseen keeping,
Hath lowered the lofty, let the lowly climb,
And swept away the sustenance of my home.
What is there that endures? Go ask of Greece or Rome.

``Mullion from sill, transom from beam, is cracking,
Beauty and majesty their only stay;
And, save new wealth supply what now is lacking,
These too in turn will slowly pass away.
And I must save and strive in duteous ways,
So irksome felt by most in these luxurious days.''

``There is another way, some deem a duty,
None call unworthy,'' slowly she replied.
``Women there be, gifted with charm and beauty,
On whom hath Fortune lavished wealth beside.''
``I am not made like that,'' he firmly said;
``I but for love alone should ever woo or wed.''

And, as he said it, on her face he centred
Strong tender gaze, as though to search her soul,
Which straight so deep into her being entered,
She felt a current beyond will's control.
Crimsoning she turned aside, and thus confessed
The secret she had thought to hide within her breast.

Out of a cloud long gathering burst a flashing,
Followed by thunder's discontented sound;
And straight they heard slow big round raindrops plashing
On the green leaves o'erhead and emerald ground.
``Hark! I must hasten home,'' she said, ``before
The storm-wrack breaks.''-``And I will see you to your door.''

All through the morrow much he seemed to ponder,
And oft would halt and gaze upon the ground,
Or look out fixedly on something yonder,
Unseen by others, which at last he found,
And then strode quickly on, since he had solved
The doubt that would die out oftener the years revolved.

``Yes, for she hath that higher understanding
That routs Life's phantoms with a fearless face,
And knows, when spectral enemies throng banding,
The good from bad, the noble from the base.
To-morrow will I offer, ask for, all,
Love, Faith, and Hope can give, whatever else befall.''

But on the morrow came she not. More lonely,
Wandering, he felt than ever heretofore;
Nor on the morrow's morrow, and he only
Could wait her will, nor wend unto their door
Till wearily some doubtful days crept on,
And then the farmstead sought, to find its guests had gone!

Gone three days back, and none knew why or whither.
Then he with promptitude unleashed his mind,
In search for trace, now hither and now thither,
But trace or tidings nowhere could he find.
Still unremittingly he sought: in vain
Was search within our shore, was search beyond the main.

Slowly the glory from the Summer faded,
And ominously leaves began to fall;
And ever and anon harsh gusts invaded
Avoncourt, moaning through deserted hall,
And roaring woefully up chimney wide;
And mute the deerhound clung unto her master's side,

Or gazed at him with sad look sympathetic,
As though it too missed what its master missed.
``Ah, Lufra!'' said he in a voice prophetic,
``She is gone, and we shall never see her more.
Cling you to me, and I will take you where
Wander awhile I must, wherever I may fare.

``No more than you can I unmask the meaning
Of hapless things that baffle mortal vows.''
Then, sighing, saw he white-haired Winter gleaning,
Amid the crackling drift and fallen boughs
That lay on avenue, chase, and garden garth,
Fuel to feed faint flame upon her widowed hearth.

He was not one of those who love to wrangle
Before the populace for place and power,
Or fight for wealth with weapons that but strangle
The nobler passions, manhood's richest dower.
``I will return when wound shall less be felt,
And work among my folk, dwelling where once she dwelt.''

Farewell he took of wood-reeve, keeper, ranger,
And tenants grave with grief, and some in tears,
And order gave that Avoncourt to stranger
Be leased for maybe many coming years;
Then crossed the vigilant, unsleeping sea
That ranges round our Isle, to keep it great and free.

He lingered not in that vain-glorious city,
Whose Rulers pass the sceptre to the crowd,
But wended to the Land where amorous ditty
By swain at work to maid is sung aloud;
Where life is simple, and unchanging ways
Of tillage still recall loved Virgil's rustic lays:

Where on majestic pedestals the mighty
Marble imaginings of Art august,
Thought-wrinkled Zeus and dimpled Aphrodité,
Exact our homage and command our trust;
Immortal gods whose never-ending sway
Rebellion cannot shake nor scoffing sweep away.

And in that high companionship he slowly
Stifled his sighs and cicatrised his wound,
And, with the griefs the lofty and the lowly
Alike must feel, his share of pain attuned;
More willingly, it may be, since he knew
He unto love and loss would evermore keep true.

Ofttimes he stood by shrines where peasants kneeling
Told of their sorrows to the Mother-Maid,
Unto celestial sympathy appealing
From the world's pitiless splendour and parade;
And in that sight he resignation found,
With sun, and sea, and sky, and mountain-peaks around.

So that when nigh upon a year had vanished
Homeward his longing and his looks were cast,
Feeling 'twere base to longer stay self-banished,
Grafting his future on a fruitless past.
And soon his steadfast journeying came to close,
Where Avoncourt amid its unchanged woodlands rose.

It had meanwhile been leased to lately wedded
Tenants, unknown to Fame, but well endowed
With what could rescue it from fate so dreaded
Of slow decay and ruin-mantling shroud,
And who already had done much to win
Its walls from storm without, and worm and moth within.

So, as in duty bound, he promptly started
From home prepared for him on his estate,
With cheerful step if somewhat heavy-hearted,
To visit those who lived within his gate;
Ascending through the woodland's winding ways,
That wore more careful mien than in the bygone days.

It was the dawn of Autumn, very season
When he from further search for her forbore,
Whom to forget had seemed to him a treason,
Though well he knew he ne'er should see her more.
Sound, sight, scent, yellowing elm, and conecrowned fir,
Sunshine and shade alike, reminded him of her.

But, resolute to curb regret, he entered,
And, led through hall and corridor, he wound
To long ancestral gallery, and centred
His curious gaze on what he saw around.
It seemed to have lost no look of days gone by,
Withal to blend young smile with ancient majesty.

Still on the walls the effigies ancestral,
In armour or in ermine, hung unchanged,
With the device of wild boar, wolf, or kestrel,
That once in English forests freely ranged;
With later draperies that seemed to bring
Distance more near and shed a grace round everything.

While gazing out on well-remembered garden,
Where old yew hedges screened new-planted rose,
Against whose beauty none his heart could harden,
He heard a door soft open and then close.
And, turning, saw Egeria, with a face
Pale as a moon that moves alone through lonely space!

``Are you a guest,'' he said, ``in my poor dwelling?''
``I am,'' she answered, ``your-your tenant's wife.
Hear me in patience, dear, while I am telling
What tell I must, but tell this once for life.''
Whereat they towards each other drew more near:
One spoke, one listened, both without a sob or tear.

``I loved, I love you. Noble since I know you,
Here I confess that I shall love you still;
Since you will never show me nor I show you
More tenderness than now, for such God's will.
Knowing I should, love once avowed, rejoice,
Should not refuse your love, could not resist your voice,

``From you I fled, and steadfast left behind me
No word to weaken you, no sign, no trace,
Whereby your manliness could following find me.
For well I knew, that day your face my face
Scanned in strong silence, probing to my heart,
Love once confessed, no power could keep our lives apart.

``And well, too well I knew, for all things told me,
Men's tongues, the air, I thus should wreck your life,
And Avoncourt reproachfully behold me
A selfish bride and paralysing wife;
That duty had decreed a harder fate
For you, for me. If wrong, I know the right too late.

``In innocency's life there comes an hour
When stands revealed what it could never guess:
That there is magical and mystic power
To make love strong or leave it powerless;
If felt, if given without one selfish thought,
That Love is Wisdom's self, and all beside is nought.

``Ask me no more, I beg, than what I tell you:
I am your tenant, at another's will.
How, wherefore, when, on that which then befell, you,
Though I be mute, will understand me still.
Forgive, but ne'er forget me. Now depart,
Till to endurance Time shall mellowed have the smart.''

Her hand she stretched towards him, and, low bending,
On it his lips he reverently laid,
As on some sacred relic pilgrims wending
From far-off land with faith still undecayed.
Then he went forth, and she remained, alone,
Stern Duty unassailed upon its sovran throne.

But with the morrow's dawn there came the tidings
How that a crafty, freedom-loathing race,
Its schemes unmasked, had come from out its hidings,
And flung defiance in its Suzerain's face,
Then on his open territories burst,
Proclaiming these annexed unto its rule accursed.

Then England said, ``I must endure no longer
This long-conspiring, now presumptuous brood,
But must assert the Sceptre of the stronger
Against their vapourings vain and challenge rude,
Who have against me their false flag unfurled,
Urged to their ruin by an Empire-envying world.''

Nor England only, nor main-moated Britain,
But their brave offspring homed beyond the sea,
In righteous wrath arose, and, duty-smitten,
Vowed that their Afric brethren should be free
To think and speak the thing they would, and dwell
Equal and safe around Law's peaceful citadel.

Then said Sir Alured, ``Against such foemen
I too will ride and strike,'' and round him drew
All Avoncourt's hard-knit, well-mounted yeomen,
And to his lands ancestral bade adieu.
Beneath him seethed the waters no one barred,
Over the wave-wide track our steel-shod sentries guard.

And day by day Egeria scans and watches
The ebb and flow of fluctuating war,
And ofttimes sees his name in terse dispatches
Shine among those that most distinguished are.
Then pride and terror in her heart contend,
And low she prays anew, ``Dear God! his life befriend!''

And when she reads of some fresh deed of daring
That decorates his breast and crowns his brow,
Sparing of others, of himself unsparing,
She weeps apart where no one sees. But now
This Tale of True Love hath been truly told.
May it by some be read, and by it some consoled!

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Sloppy thinking gets worse over time.

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Hominid and human evolution took place over millions and not billions of years, but with the emergence of language there was a further acceleration of time and the rate of change.

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Time Of Day

i smell the coffee

with you
my third mourning

but this time
i sweeten

maple syrup to
blackest crude acid i

open the windows
draw a blind

leave
the door unlocked

that much easier
with practice over time


resh 2012

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Time is come late

Many geniuses faced the penalty of
death.
Many cheats held glory until their death.
Many nobles died by accidents.
Many rogues thrived by incidents.
The world finds it after the event is over.
Time- it does only one thing:
To brood over the past.
21.02.2002, Pakd

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Run Cockroaches Over Him

divine revelation
for that inert, slow thinking child
run cockroaches all over him
walk him through a room of them
after that see him
get better day by day
intellectually
coackroaches
the harbingers of energy
that sets free that seed
of intelligence in anybody
try it and tell me whether it is true! ! ! !

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Hail Hail Spit N Drool

I took time to think things over - time I didn't want to spare.
Cause someone told me I had things to fix - things I didn't wanna repair.
So I was talked into sitting quietly thinking bout the things I'd done.
Didn't like it so I said wisely oh hell!
Where's my fun?
Hail hail spit n'drool.
I liked the way that things were going don't like the way they're going now.
But I'd like to add there is a thing I can do
gonna tell you what

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Clowntime Is Over

Tears on your blackmail
Written to ransom
A point of the fingernail
Says that hes handsome
Clowntime is over
Time to take cover
While others just talk and talk
Somebodys watching where the others dont walk
Clowntime is over
A voice in the shadows
Says that his men know
He dont step back as expected
Hes otherwise and unprotected
Chorus
Almost too good to be true
Who do you? why do you? what do you do?
While everybodys hiding under covers
Whos making lovers lane safe again for lovers?
Chorus

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Clowntime Is Over No. 2

clowntime is over
Tears on your blackmail
Written to ransom
A point of the fingernail
Says that he's handsome
Clowntime is over
Time to take cover
While others just talk and talk
Somebody's watching where the others don't walk
Clowntime is over
A voice in the shadows
Says that his men know
He don't step back as expected
He's otherwise and unprotected
Chorus
Almost too good to be true
Who do you? why do you? what do you do?
While everybody's hiding under covers
Who's making lover's lane safe again for lovers?
Chorus

song performed by Elvis CostelloReport problemRelated quotes
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