The Metaphysical Sword

By Jeremy Ingalls
IT has been clear for some time that unless our civilization were truly on the way to speedy extinction there would arise a new poetry to replace the exhausted and despairing voices which have given the tone to the ‘age of disillusion’ of the last twenty years. There are already signs that such a renaissance is taking place, and this volume is one of them.
The life of man is holy. Do not hide
From such an outright, strong and plain word,
says Miss Ingalls. To her the ultimate reality is the world beyond and the world within, and her poetry is a reminder to man that
We are bred brothers for a further reason
Than your humanities, clean milk and music.
Her language is precise and economical. In ‘A Message to Tu Fu’ she commands the carved visual image, the clear light and cool phrasing, of the Chinese manner, but the majority of the poems are created in strong forthright speech rhythms ‘carried alive into the heart by passion’; and, as in ‘The Fable of the False Premise,’ she has a direct, edged irony which goes straight to its mark.
I saw Rat nibbling on a wise man’s book.
Rat of Rat’s premises conclusions took
Of his Rat’s way so to apply his learning.
Worm had a book and wormily from browsing
Fed Worm, digesting his one page, forsook
Worm’s habitation; Worm’s way of thinking
Could not forsake nor Rat his premise either.
Fallen angel, how fallen, who will challenge neither.
E. D.