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La Macheide

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In the case of “Prufrock”, though, Eliot obviously wants to avoid that “contract”. He wants the poem to sound like the “rambling” of an old man; perfect, symmetrical or predictable meter would run counter to that goal. Instead, he surprises us with each line, all within its scrambled heterometrical structure. IMHO, this is a significant part of the beauty and innovation in “Prufrock”. (It also explains its alleged role as “la Macheide” in debates over the subsequent decline of metrical work and study but we can leave that discussion for another day.)

comment to a post under the blog for the poetry foundation

Another day? Oh, let’s not delay another!

Search “macheide” on Google, on Microsoft’s new Google-wannabe Bing, contributing to Cornerstone Recovery via GoodSearch (powered by the Yahoo! search engine), on Excite, or on just about any other Internet Search engine, and perhaps upwards of 95% of the search results will point to one of my own footprints (including my own websites, mrs macheide’s websites, or discussions pointing to me or to her), with most of the remaining links arising from German chess players, topped off with a small handful of links pointing to Lasker’s philosophical treatise wherein he created the word “macheide” and its concept.

Throughout the thousands of links comprising that collection, the quote above stands out quite unique: obviously drawing no reference to me, it uses the term “la macheide” in a non-chess discussion, on a topic very near and dear to my heart – poetry! indeed, about an issue of poetics that has always been of extreme interest to me!! And does so in a very natural manner that seems to presume that the other readers will naturally understand the reference! Then is not questioned by any of those other readers about that statement!

Yet any followup Internet searches on “la macheide” or on “the macheide” or on any other restricted reference do nothing more than make it easier to find references to the Lasker origin of the concept.

Since when have poetics experts become so natural with the macheide concept as to use it so fluently?! I’m not complaining that they do – their reference is quite exquisite! Just . . . I feel a bit left out. Now I want those lectures or treatises or discussions that led this commenter to so naturally, so correctly, so appropriately call on the name ‘macheide’ in this non-chess context.

Consider that a new Internet research expedition I shall undertake. Possibly commencing with simply contacting the author of the comment.

Written by macheide

10 June 2009 at 6:06 am

Posted in macheide


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