Michael Field

[i. e. Katherine Harris Bradley u. Edith Emma Cooper]



Sight and Song





THE aim of this little volume is, as far as may be, to translate into verse what the lines and colours of certain chosen pictures sing in themselves; to express not so much what these pictures are to the poet, but rather what poetry they objectively incarnate. Such an attempt demands patient, continuous sight as pure as the gazer can refine it of theory, fancies, or his mere subjective enjoyment.

'Il faut, par un effort d'esprit, se transporter dans les personnages et non les attirer à soi.' For personnages substitute peintures, and this sentence from Gustave Flaubert's 'Correspondence' resumes the method of art-study from which these poems arose.

[VI] Not even 'le grand Gustave' could ultimately illude himself as a formative power in his work – not after the pain of a lifetime directed to no other end. Yet the effort to see things from their own centre, by suppressing the habitual centralisation of the visible in ourselves, is a process by which we eliminate our idiosyncrasies and obtain an impression clearer, less passive, more intimate.

When such effort has been made, honestly and with persistence, even then the inevitable force of individuality must still have play and a temperament mould the purified impression: –

'When your eyes have done their part,
 Thought must length it in the heart.'

                                            M. F.

February 15, 1892.





Erstdruck und Druckvorlage

Michael Field: Sight and Song.
London: Elkin Mathews and John Lane 1892, S. V-VI.

Die Textwiedergabe erfolgt nach dem ersten Druck (Editionsrichtlinien).

URL: https://archive.org/details/sightandsong00fielgoog
PURL: https://hdl.handle.net/2027/mdp.39015012356690





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Cameron, Brooke: The Pleasures of Looking and the Feminine Gaze in Michael Field's Sight and Song. In: Victorian Poetry 51.2 (2013), S. 147-175.

Dever, Carolyn (Hrsg.): One Soul We Divided. A Critical Edition of the Diary of Michael Field. Princeton 2024.

Ehnenn, Jill R.: Michael Field's Revisionary Poetics. Edinburgh 2023.

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Richardson, LeeAnne: Turn of the Century Women's Poetry: Skirting the Problems of Periodization In: Nineteenth-Century Gender Studies 13.3 (2017), S. 81-101.

Saville, Julia F.: The Poetic Imaging of Michael Field. In: The Fin-de-Siècle poem. English Literary Culture and the 1890s. Hrsg. von Joseph Bristow. Athens 2005, S. 178-206.

Stetz, Margaret D. / Wilson, Cheryl A. (Hrsg.): Michael Field and Their World. High Wycombe 2007.

Thain, Marion: "Michael Field". Poetry, Aestheticism and the Fin de Siècle. Cambridge u.a. 2007.

Vadillo, Ana P.: Women Poets and Urban Aestheticism. Passengers of Modernity. Basingstoke 2005.



Lyriktheorie » R. Brandmeyer