Dreams are rhapsodies of children unborn

and ships burned anchored

because the gods are whores

as usual




© Basilike Pappa, 2018



Image: Burning of the Frigate Philadelphia in the Harbor of Tripoli, February 16, 1804, Edward Moran (1829-1901)


32 thoughts on “Burn

  1. I noticed you posted this picture of the burning ship with the accompanying poem on October 7th (which is still tomorrow for me) but I find it interesting because it was on this date October 7th back in 1571 that the naval forces of Spain and the Republic of Venice burnt and sank the ships of the naval forces of the Ottoman Turkish Empire at the naval Battle of Lepanto which saved Western Europe from being invaded and conquered by the Ottoman Turks like happened to Eastern Europe.

    Liked by 4 people

    1. I hadn’t thought of that at all!

      I wanted to use a painting by Konstantinos Volanakis, but it’s named ‘The Burning of the Turkish Frigade’ and thought not to. I didn’t want my post to have any ‘national’ connotations.

      But thank you for reminding me of the Battle of Lepanto. Cervantes was there too.

      And thank you for reading!

      Liked by 3 people

  2. This puts me in mind of a poem I “found”, Basilike. I took John Donne’s “A Burnt Ship”, ran it through Google Translate a few times, and captured a new and strangely compelling version of his poem. What is it about burnt ships that inspires us so?… :- )

    (By the way, did you know the Americans burned the Philadelphia? It had been captured by Barbary pirates after it ran aground near Tripoli, and U.S. forces destroyed it to deny them the use of the warship.)

    Liked by 1 person

    1. You got me thinking!

      I think ships represent dreams or ambition. They’d take you to other lands, to build a new life or to conquer (sad but true). Perhaps by watching how a ship is built, you could feel the dream growing, expanding inside you. I suppose it took time to make a ship, and surely craftsmanship. All this can be destroyed very fast by fire — the time, the care and the dream. There is also a tragic irony in the burning of a ship: it is destroyed while the means to save it is all around it.

      I didn’t know about the Philadelphia. I must do some studying. Interesting story!

      I’d love to read your found poem, Bill!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Your thoughts on ships are very interesting, Basilike! Now you’ve got *me* thinking. LOL!

        Donne’s poem “A Burnt Ship” runs like this:

        Out of a fired ship, which by no way
        But drowning could be rescued from the flame,
        Some men leaped forth, and ever as they came
        Near the foes’ ships, did by their shot decay;
        So all were lost, which in the ship were found,
        They in the sea being burnt, they in the burnt ship drowned.

        My “translation” via Google Translate came out like this:

        Shot of the ship in the collapse
        Of momentum, people jumped,
        So it’s obvious that everyone is missing the boat —
        They are sinking into the sea, the ship is on fire.

        :- )

        Liked by 1 person

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