Looking up at the stars, I know quite wellThis couplet reminded me of perhaps my favorite of all limericks, also written by Auden:
That for all they care, I can go to hell.
– "The More Loving One"
As the poets have mournfully sung,And taking these two small verses together, I realized that Auden had as cold an eye as anyone...and I myself seem to have a colder eye. I'm skeptical, even at times sardonic (scornful, mocking, cynical—my standard attitude toward all things Bushevik; of course, when it comes to our "president," a lot of us are sardonic).
Death takes the innocent young,
The screamingly funny,
And those who are very well hung.
– "The Aesthetic Point of View"
Maybe I really do have a colder eye, and that's why I'm so drawn to James Joyce and Flann O'Brien and W.B. Yeats? (Yeats's tombstone enjoins us:
Cast a cold eyeI've made a note now to re-read A Colder Eye.
On life, on death.
Horseman, pass by!)