Sunday, November 3, 2013


Sometimes five Imprimaturs are seen together dialogue-wise in the piazza of one title-page, complimenting and ducking each to other with their shaven reverences, whether the author, who stands by in perplexity at the foot of his epistle, shall to the press or to the sponge. These are the pretty responsories, these are the dear antiphonies, that so bewitched of late our prelates and their chaplains with the goodly echo they made; and besotted us to the gay imitation of a lordly Imprimatur, one from Lambeth House, another  from the west end of Paul's; so apishly Romanizing, that the word of command still was set down in Latin; as if the learned grammatical pen that wrote it would cast no ink without Latin; or perhaps, as they thought, because no vulgar tongue was worthy to express the pure conceit of an Imprimatur, but rather, as I hope, for that our English, the language of men ever famous and foremost in the achievements of liberty, will not easily find servile letters enow to spell such a dictatory presumption English.

NOTE:  The dizzying beauty of John Milton’s almost possessed prose is point to the counterpoint of the Main Event. 

Which is, on the one hand, the recumbent supinity of our current political press, and on the other, the creepy anonymity granted college student comment sewer denizens who aspire to take their place.

The New Normal.  How does it Feel? 


  1. Illiteracy is lamentable. I suppose that is an unconscious drive of yours with your blog. At least people have access now what with e books. I must say that text speak is an impediment. I wish people would ignore more, if you know what I mean. It seems that if something is in print or on the internet it is given undeserved credence. Like the man said, keep on truckin'.

  2. By the way, you seem rather astute at computers, so I'll ask you something I've asked Google several times with no reply - you probably noticed the dash symbol where my photo should be. I've tried 3 or so times to put one there. It stays for a few hours and then reverts to that symbol. Any suggestions? I also can't keep photos on my blog, the same thing happens.

    1. I wish I were astute at computers. I'm not and my daughter is constantly reinforcing my justified sense of low self-esteem. Blogger seems to have been having fits lately. I've been posting now daily for over three years and I've discovered when revisiting past posts that Blogger is removing photos. I'm restoring them and re-laying things out when I can very slowly, but it's really frustrating because, you know, I try to post things in a way I think reflects my intentions and (limited) potential. As far as literacy and your other observation, I agree. Text-speak and Twitter-speak don't agree with me at all. For awhile a year ago or so, I was writing a "food news" column for a local monthly magazine and I did like the fact that I was word-limited and that I needed to revise for length. I think the John Milton passage from Areopagitica here is an astonishing piece of writing. Curtis

  3. Thanks. Nice to know that it's not just me. I do notice that my profile photo seems to have stayed in place, knock wood.

    Along with Nick Cave you remind me that I should read some Milton. I guess it's from the same reticence I have with Dante. :( Not very Lynchian of me is it? And I'm otherwise quite the Lynch fan. I'm also delving into my Jerusalem Bible often. Not the only inconsistency of my character. :/