Kick-Ass Emotional Insight from Dylan Thomas

Vik RubenfeldPoem1 Comment

(Image via Black Spruce Hound)

I’ve posted previously about how a work of art communicates a meaning that only your emotional ability can appreciate. Today’s Dylan Thomas poem, “In My Craft or Sullen Art”, is a great example.

In My Craft Or Sullen Art
by Dylan Thomas

In my craft or sullen art
Exercised in the still night
When only the moon rages
And the lovers lie abed
With all their griefs in their arms,
I labour by singing light
Not for ambition or bread
Or the strut and trade of charms
On the ivory stages
But for the common wages
Of their most secret heart.
Not for the proud man apart
From the raging moon I write
On these spindrift pages
Nor for the towering dead
With their nightingales and psalms
But for the lovers, their arms
Round the griefs of the ages,
Who pay no praise or wages
Nor heed my craft or art.

Let’s focus on these lines:

And the lovers lie abed

With all their griefs in their arms,

Intellectually this is merely a mystery. It isn’t at all apparent to me intellectually why lovers would feel that in holding one another they are holding their griefs. But with my emotional ability, I feel the lines have a huge meaning that is easily grasped. I have a response to this of, “Yes, that’s it exactly.”  It’s a fantastic example of emotional insight in art.

Do you feel it?

One Comment on “Kick-Ass Emotional Insight from Dylan Thomas”

  1. Pingback: Emotional Insight from “Catcher in the Rye” Part II | Vik Rubenfeld Author Blog

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