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Thursday, January 6, 2011

The Off Season


It starts in the spring. Trees are blooming, the sun is shining.
The perfect time to start tennis.
The game has rules that most don’t know. I learn those rules, so I can compete.
Competing is what makes it so fun.
Warming up is the chance to intimidate.
Intimidate your opponent so they choke.
Once you get in their head, its over before you even start.
The first toss is in the air. You keep your eye on the ball. Nothing can distract you.
The next thing you know, your arm is flying as high as it can go.
You meet the ball in your strings, and your wrist snaps down.
The perfect serve.
The ball goes into your opponent’s body. The underrated shot that no one can stop.
You continue to dominate the first game.
It is the time to switch sides, and see what the other man can do.
The first serve is a fault. You move in closer for the second serve. The ball goes in, you smash it back.
The first rally of the game begins. This is a test of the mind. You work your opponent back and forth, wearing him down.
The ball goes where you want it. Corner to corner until you trick him and hit it on the same side.
He trips trying to switch directions. You make him look like a fool.
You dominate the rest of that match, and the rest of the regular season.
After that is where the real competition begins.
You start at districts. You are challenged at first, then you realize you can win.
Your team cheers you on, wanting you to go your farthest.
You win districts and head for state.
The first match is a struggle, barely pulling off the win.
Second round. It is close the whole time, but now you lose.
Congratulations go to your opponent. You tried your best.
There is always someone better than you,
But that is why you have the off season.

Byron's Club


Byron’s Club is a very colorful blog that immediately grabs your attention.  Authors Athena Proctor, Austin Bell, Baily Copeland, and Alejandra Garcia do a fantastic job at making sure you are properly entertained, while still expanding your knowledge. Their blog is about Lord Byron who is a historical romantic poet. They show great interest in their research, which always helps make a blog livelier. I really enjoyed different pictures they used to help you get a better idea about who Lord Byron really was. Most people don’t know a lot about him, but by reading this blog, anyone can learn loads of information about him, his life, and his poetry. They go into great detail in describing the meanings of the poems, and face it; analyzing poems can be difficult at times. It is even more difficult when the person is from a different time period and their way of speech is different. You really will never get bored reading this blog. In random spots there are some funny posts and pictures, which help give comic relief to such a serious topic. Sometimes reading long paragraphs can get boring and repetitive. On any page you look at you can find some great quotes by Lord Byron. This also helps to shake things up, and if you are looking for some hints to help your life, these quotes are great! When you feel that you have learned all that you can about Byron, they have links to other pages where you can learn more about Byron, or other historical romantic poets. These other sights are good as well, and will lead you to learn wonderful information. This blog is very important to those who know nothing about poetry, or Lord Byron. Most people don’t even know who Byron was, and if that is you, check out this blog! People should know about romantic poetry because it helps you understand things in life that you may not have understood before. So please do your self a favor and check out this blog. You will benefit greatly from it, and you wont regret it.

Reading Response #3


The Revolutionary Vision of William Blake by Thomas J. J. Altizer is an article that focus’s not only on Blake’s theories and ideas, but also his vision of Christ. Blake is a hard man to understand when trying to figure out what his poetry is getting at. “Thereby he is deeply unknown to us all…” (33). This is the whole point of Altizer’s article; to help us understand Blake. His main focus, however, is on Blake’s view of Christ and Satan. Blake finds contradictions in the Bible, which he uses to create much of his poetry and artwork. By doing this, he makes people question what they have once learned. One of Blake’s main ideas was that God is equal to Satan. This goes against everything that the Christian society has been taught. In doing this, he uses the basic idea that God and Satan are opposites of each other. He then goes on to point out that there has to be opposition in all things in order for us to exist. When these two ideas are combined, he can say that because we have to have opposites, and because God and Satan are opposite, they are really the same. With out one or the other we could not exist, which makes the statement possible, that God equals Satan. Blake then can further continue this idea, or theory by saying that if God or Satan dies, then the other must die too. Once this seed has been planted in your mind, you begin to ask questions. Blake did not believe in organized religion for many reasons, which are discussed in this article. Altizer is able to make Blake’s ideas more clear to us, thereby expanding Blake himself. He talks about how Christianity started as an apocalyptic faith, but then completely reversed itself. How could today’s Christian society be correct in their teachings, if they have reversed their whole ideas from the time that Christ was on the earth? Organized religion was what Blake wanted us to stay away from, and with the help of Altizer we are able to understand why and we are able to understand Blake.

 
         
Blake’s poems are very interesting. I don’t say this because of his high level of writing, but I say this because his poems make you think and question. Through out the Bible, there are stories where people had to show great faith. People like Job, or Moses. Blake questions this idea of faith, and religion in general. How can we know if there is a God or not? There has been many times where Blake focused on this greatly, to the point where he said that the idea of God is something that we use to try and find comfort in. Blake makes many good points in his theories, but I disagree with him. This is a subject that I have thought about many times. You may say that I am wrong, but everyone has to make these types of decisions on their own. For me I have decided that there is a God. For thousands of years, people have believed in some sort of God or gods. Like Blake, I also believe that organized religion, most often times is incorrect. This is because as principles of religion were passed down, they were often changed to fit the ideas of man, instead of the ideas of God. Because of this, religion has strayed too far from the truth, so it is important that we try and figure out the truth for our self. I think that’s what Blake’s whole idea on religion was. Don’t just listen to someone and take their word for it. Take the time for yourself to research and figure out what you think is right.  Blake is a great poet, and some may even call him a great philosopher. I completely agree with this, and that’s one of the reasons I chose to study him. Although many do not know it, Blake has become one of the largest influences on Christian society, and poetry today. Thanks to Altizer, even the more simple minds can understand Blake.

Freedom To Fall

Freedom To Fall By Amanda Yacapin is a poem about how things change from when your a child to when your all grown up. She starts out by telling a story about a group of children running up to the top of a hill and then rolling back down as fast as they can go. All of the kids are having a great time. They have no worries, they are care free, and all they can can think about is having fun. As the poems moves on she talks about how things in life look different through an adults eye. "...What used to be the freedom of falling is now the fear of losing control." suggests that life as a child is a complete 180° turn once you experience the challenges of adult hood. It shows there are no serious consequences for your actions as a child because face it, your a child. When you becone an adult you have to worry about so many things you never thought about as a child, how your gonna make your bills, if you have money for gas, and work. I guess this is why she says "No more tumbling and fumbling. My adult life has come" to explain how the fun of being a child slips away from you without any warning. Another side to this poem is that yes, not being able to have anymore childish games is no fun, but being an adult has so many good sides. You cant drive a car when your a child. You cant own a house when your a child. You cant have a job and income when your a child. I beleive that amandas main point for this poem is that when you become an adult, you will lose all of your old ways, but gain responsibilty and enjoy your new found life.

Prose Poem: The Rain Show

The light of the sun slowly fades away as the thick smoky gray clouds hide it away. Then it all starts with a low pitched pitter patter then a louder plip, plop that quickly begins to intensify. Pretty soon the rain starts to pound fiercely against the glass window tap, tap creating a sharp quickening rhythm that’s all its own. The sound of the rain is so strong and over powering that it forces me to listen to its song. I stare out the window watching as the millions of rain drops slide across the glass one chasing right after the other. Puddles begin to form and I can see the rain drops bounce lightly against the water. I start to wonder if it will ever stop raining. In this moment it feels as if the water will keep falling from the sky for all of eternity. Now the wind has joined in, roaring and creating its own music that harshly clashes with that of the rains. Leaves ruffle across the sidewalk, and the tree branches swish violently through the air. It’s like I’m getting my own show right from my window. But it finally comes to an end just like all things, both good and bad. The rain stops, the wind hushes to a soft whistle, leaves settle all across the ground, and the branches start to sway gently to a stop. All those sounds quietly begin to fade away and there’s a feeling of tranquility. The moon glistens behind the now translucent clouds. I look over the dark glazed streets that are illuminated by the light of the golden yellow street lights lined up in perfect order. It’s dark and getting late so I finally let the curtains fall into their place. It’s the end of the show.        

Blogging Community: "All About Blake"

The blog “All About Blake” by Austin Livengood, and Lichelle Garcia is a blog that has a little bit of everything on Blake’s writing. Similar to our blog we share the same goal of looking into Blake’s various works. Their blog features many interpretations on a variety of Blake’s poems.    
The first thing you will see when you go on their blog is a slide show of William Blake’s famous quotes which I really liked. Aside from that their blog features videos of poems being read aloud to go along with some of their posts. There are also lots of pictures, as well as links to different websites. Something I really liked about the blog was that off to the side are listed all of Blake’s poems with links to each one. Their blog has this really cool slide show of some of Blake’s artwork. What I like the most about this blog is that each post has links at the end that allow you to see where they got their ideas from and allow you to do some exploring of you own on the subject. The post on the article, “William Blake's America, 2010” was one that I found the most interesting. I would definitely recommend reading it. It mainly talks about the selfishness of people. It goes on talking about how there can be people who have so much and still want more, meanwhile there are some people who have nothing at all.
This blog would be really helpful to someone who wants to get a better understanding of the meanings of Blake’s poems. On the blog there are a lot of interpretations on Blake’s poems such as “A Little Boy Lost”, “The Tiger”, “Love’s Secret”, as well as others. It can be really helpful to read about others thoughts and opinions on poetry because sometimes someone might see something in a poem that another might have never even thought of. Reading some of those posts can be really helpful for someone trying to make sense of Blake’s poems, or for someone who wants to hear about other persons thoughts.
Check out the blog "All About Blake" here:  http://all-about-blake.blogspot.com/

Alaska

A magical place. The top of the world. Oh yes, you must be in Alaska. Alaska shows its true colors the second you jump off that plane, or hop off that boat. Weather its fishing, hiking, boating, hunting, kayaking, or even mountain climbing you better strap in, because Alaska will knock you off you feet.
Layer up because the chills awaits for you. When you first experience the weather up there your life will feel complete but just wait, there’s more to come. Alaska will determine if your a real man or if you should just stay at home drinking your hot cocoa. It takes all of you and a little bit more to adapt to the lifestyle up there but when you do. oh man, it is the greatest feeling in the whole world.
A HUGE part of Alaska if the fishing! you have got every kind of fish up there from a trout to a King salmon. Going fishing in Alaska is no casual trip to the lake, no no no. You have got to plan for WEEKS about where your going, how your going to get there, what gun your going to bring for protection, and what you need to pack. The reason you bring a gun to a fishing trip is because of the overpopulation of Grizzly Bears! and they LOVE the fish your going to catch for them. My gun of choice would probably be a 12 gauge shotgun or a 300 magnum rifle because those are the only two guns that can take a bears head clean off...
The feeling of landing your first king salmon is indescribable. It’s the most amazing feeling ever. Last thing you remember is you bored standing on the edge of a beautiful glassy blue river when boom, it hits, and comes down on you like a ton of bricks. Your back hurts. your adrenaline's pumping. the end of your pole is violently shaking. your reeling in your line just as fast as you can go. but the smile on your face masks all of that. All you want to do is see your fish, and the second you throw it up on the bank and look at its rosy red glow and steel silver shine you know you did a good job.