19th Century Literature Week 12 - Time to party like it is the the end of the century...

So, we have finally made it. The literal end of the semester, al that remains is the exam and then the bliss of uni break. I would be deluding myself if I did not say I am longing for that break. Nevertheless, there is still work to be gotten through.

It was interesting reading through the preface to The Portrait of Dorian Grey. Usually,you would think of a preface to give some kind of insight into the text from the writers point of view, rather than the writer arguing the finer points of what art is really on about. But then again it would be silly to assume that Wilde would do something that we would consider the logical choice. Regardless, you could agrue til you blue in the face over what is really meant by most of his statements.


I had already planned to travel into the city to take some photos once I finished at work, and I was really glad that one of my photographing buddies tagged along because once we got to the city we found that we needed to find someone else to photograph- due to a stupid half marathon fencing everywher off. So we headed off to Vaulcuse instead and caught dawn there. I was a little annoye because I was really wanting to do some architectual photos, but I can easily do that another time. So, for 2 hours we roamed up and down the coast line, taking photos at various places. The thing that annoyed me the most was all the lights from the boats moored offshore that came up as blips on the horizon- ruining the otherwise perfect dawn. The colours of the sky was amazing but all the predawn photos are just littered with little out of place lights. Oh well, there is always another chance to get some photos.



Considering this is my last post of the semester, I am just going to place ever "unpublished" poem I have up for you all to view. The last poem  started out as just a line written in my commonplace book by Joanne Aboud, as it was part of a dream that really scared her, and insisted that I write a poem using it. Ususally, I wouldn't do it because it was not my thought which spurred the poem but as I was going through a creative dry patch, it just felt like a good way to end the semester.


The Tree Upon The Cliff
By Jonathan Maranik

Clinging desperately to the cliff,
a smal tree grows
completely cut off from the world.

Within its own way
and in its own time,
this small tree grows
unaware of the risks
that will befall it.

Strong winds will come
to blow it away.
The cliff will even throw rocks
in an attempt to remove
the tree from its face.

And until a calamity befalls
the small tree growing on the cliff
will continue to be
cut off from the rest of the world.


By Jonathan Maranik

Fear grip
when confidence

Folly strikes
where intellect

Hatred habours
when love

Malice grows
where mercy

Humanity fails
when apathy


The Jumbled Scene.
By Jonathan Maranik

Never bfore have I seen
anything like that before me.
Words cannot truly describe
this jumble of images
before my eyes.

Despite te horrow eminating
from that appaling mess,
my gaze upon it is fixed,
unwavering in violent protest
as it progresses.

It is impossible to tell
it it is getting better or worse,
only that whatever it is
is a vile creation
destined to fail.


The Vice
By Jonathn Maranik

Stuck in a vice with no way of escape and the pressure slowly
increasing. Each passing moment, its grip gets tighter
and the space between gets smaller. Struggling
is futile as its gripis too strong as it slowly
starts to crush. Stuck in a vice, almost
completely closed, there is little
hope of ever being


"It's Not My Problem!"
By Jonathan Maranik
at the request of Joanne Aboud

"It's not my problem!"
Is the cry of our age,
as we turn our heads
to the ground
and walk away.

"It's not my problem!"
"It's his!"
"It's hers!"
"It's theirs!"
"But definitly not my own!"

"It's not my problem!"
"Not now!"
"Not then!"
"Not ever!"
"You caused this mess!"

"It's not m problem!"
Is all that we can say
as our world
starts to end.

Jonathan Maranik.


(no subject)


19th Century Literature Week 11 - So much WIT that is hurts...

As we are now entering into our last week of this semester and starts to seem like it is just dragging around, I decided to take a look back over my LJ. One, to esure that I had saved all my entries, but also to ensure that I had been commenting as I should have. Even without looking over my LJ, I knew I had not been. So, to amend that slight over sight, I have resolved to by the end of semester to have commented on ever single second years LJ. I don't mean the sort of commenting that MG would do, but my response to something within your post. So, stay tuned and watch for my ugly mug to appear on your page at sometime.


I don't know if I am being lazy or not in not wanting to talk greatly about the texts we have been looking at this week, or whether I am just running around in circles. It is not that I didn't enjoy reading them, it is more that I feel we just glossed too briefly over the surface of Victorian Era.

Like the daring musical exploits of Gilbert and Sullivan, whose productions were as silly as they were brilliant. Having known a bit of their works due to my mothers love of the version Australian productions from the mid 80s, it is still amazing to see how loved they are more than a hundred years from when they were originally written.

The most widely known of their musicals would be The Pirates of Penzance followed closely by The Mikado. However, I really only know Pirates and in particular one song towards the end of Act 1, which I have nicely found the youtube video for. And yes, Kevin Kline is playing the Pirate King for those of you playing along at home. If you were wondering what MG meant when he said that the songs were usually sung fast, then this is a brilliant example of fast singing, as well as how comedic their operas were.


And yet again, more poetry. Enjoy.

By Jonathan Maranik

I am uncleanliness and disorder.
I am all that is wrong with the world.
If only I could clean myself,
Then maybe I wouldn't be a burden.

The children mock me in the street,
The adults just gasp and stare.
No matter how hard I try to change,
The disorder and dirty still remains.

I am uncleaniness and disorder.
I am a product trapped with the system,
With no room to move around
Or free myself from the chains.

My fate is locked fast in place,
Dictated by those disgusting choices I made.
Yet, despite all that I cannot change,
You all have turned out the same.


Ode of the Bloody Chorus
By Jonathan Maranik

To those who went before us
And sung in that bloody chorus,
This pause we take today
is a poor way for us to repay.

You protected us with your lives,
With blasts of guns or the flashes of knives.
Yet we can never truly imagine
What it was like when the ammo ran thin.

Or how you felt the trembling ground
When shells rained all around.
How you dealt with all that pressure
Is to something we could never measure.

We offer up our hollow words of peace,
So that our country is not torn to piece.
How come we haven't leant that lesson
You fell to teach us in that grand aggression.


That Magpie
By Jonathan Maranik

The magpie sat in wait,
Watching sharply from his nest
For the first sign of danger.
He would not fall for some silly bait,
Knowing the dance of the possum was a test.
What he waited for was the face of a stranger.
And when his eyes did see
That stranger coming near,
Lik a dart he did fly.
Straight and true, and as silent as could be,
His attack come swiftly from the front and the rear,
Leaving the stranger guessing why.

With his pointed claws and beak,
He repelled the stranger in jest
And returning to his empty nest,
The magpie waited to strike again at the weak.


The Blissful Cow
By Jonathan Maranik

The cow munched blissly
In the field,
Completely unaware
Of th troubles all around.

No great concern at all
For the wolf stalking the sheep
Or the weasel in the chicken coop.
All she cared about
Was the next grassy mouthful.

The fires within the barn,
Threatening the farmer's son's life
Or the dam that was almost dry,
Were not even passing thoughts
Within the cows mind.

The cow munched blissly
In the field,
Completely unaware
That she was next upon the farmer's plate.

  • Current Music
    Back In The Day - Megadeth

19th Century Literature Week 10 - There is something weird about being Ernest...

I am not overly interested in discussing either Anton Chekhov's or Oscar Wilde's plays about the lives and journeys of the upper classes of society, mainly because when it comes to the class struggle I really don't care for it. Sure, I can see the problems within they are trying to address. It is all just a little bit too much communist for me.

As you might have noticed, I have strayed away from doing any form of formatting over the last half of the semester. This is mainly because I have become lazy with my posts. Yes, I could easily add it all back in, but I have decided that it is just too much on top of everything else I have to do in these last few weeks.


Over the last few weeks, I have been shown a few youtube videos that have recently sparked off a chain of thought that I cannot help but laugh over. Watch this harmlessly altered video below and let me know what you think.

The only thing I am going to say on it, for now as I will make comments on it later, is that I find it amazing how we have all become conditioned to expect certain things in certain situations.


Last saturday (2nd of May), my photograhy group got together again and we travelled down to Lower Portland. For thoe of you who don't now where that is, it is in the general area of Wisemen's Ferry. And if yo don't know where that is, look it up. I don't know which I enjoyed more, the drive there through the think fog long that thin widy road or the roaming around taking photos. It was beautiful and we could not have asked for a more perfect morning. The fog through the trees created fanatastic shadows that my friends were able to photograph significantly better than myself (considering that they have been doing it longer than myself and one is a professional photographer) and the thick dew everywhere meant that everythig glistened or was covered with droplets of water. In reflection of the morning afterwards, I came up with a few fog related poems. So, here are some of my favourites from the morning.



As always, here are some poems from my commonplace book. I am still trying to catch up with all my poemtic entries from the last few weeks, but then again I think I will just seperate posts to get them up. As I read back over them, there really is a common theme of being over whelmed, being lost and being frustrated coming out in quite  few of me latest poems. This is mainly due to the simple fact that I have really felt overwhelmed and frustrated with certain parts of life, and then just felt generally lost as everything seems to have become hazy. I am even more certain then I have ever been that I want to be a teacher because of our Day A Week visits ad I long to get out there and teach, but because every feels so out of my control right now it is a hard reality to truly feel joyed about.

Anywho, enjoy my poems... if you can.


By Jonathan Maranik

Your words around me
Sound like the ramblings
Of a drunk.
Each syllable seems
Like a sharp dagger
In my ear.

You all laugh at something
And I just stand there,
Unaware of the joke or pun,
Becoming increasing arkwrd
With each passing word.

Yet, even though you are talking
Around me in your native tongue,
Knowing all too well I don't know it,
Excluding me from your discussion,
If I say something about it
I am the one being


To Ruin
By Jonathan Maranik

The spiriling embers
burn cleanly through
tearing ashunder
tearing to ruin.

The dark sky thunders
calamity pours down
crumbling strongholds
crumbling to ruin.

The day rewinds
reliving each moment
crying remorsely
crying to ruin.


The Fog Part 1
By Jonathan Maranik

The fog surrounds me,
Thick and cold,
Obscures my sight
With wet walls of white.

The pathway forward
Is but a step away,
While the journey back
Is lost for now.

Despite my lack of sight,
I must continue forwards,
I must push on til I
Step ot the other side.

The frst rays of day
Struggle through the fog,
Mking my goal
Infinitely clearer.

The Fog Part 2
By Jonathan Maranik

Encased on either side
Within this fog, I could hide
Behind the folds of clouded white.

Lost within the shifting mess,
Any thought of progress dashed
As around the same spot I go.


By Jonathan Maranik

Lying awake screaming,
You feel the splinter,
Small and niggling,
Stuck deep in your hand.

For hours, you tried
With needles and tweezers,
To pull it out, but
Only made it worse.

You cannot forget it
Or remove its sting.
Time might heal some wounds,
Yet a splinter will remain.

A small piece penatrated deep
At th source of all your pain.


You, Me and ...
By Jonathan Maranik

The death seeping through my veins,
The sickness that curses us all.
The beat that continues my life,
The cancer that speeds our end.

The skin thatbbbles and cracks upon me,
The pus that oozes out of their wounds
The precious liquid of life within me,
The poisonous bile share amoung you.

The organs I eed the most to work,
The parts of you that fail first.
The pain caused spreads out fast,
The death within flairs once more.

  • Current Music
    You Can't Always Get What You Want by The Rolling Stones

19th Century Literature Week 9 - So close to the end that it hurts...

As the semester draws to a close and the final assignments for various subjects due dates get closer, I cannot help but do everything in my power to delay the inevitable through skilled and well honed procrastination. This primarily involves usually just staring aimlessly at my laptop screen as randomish pages flicker by. Or movie randomishly purchased for the sole purpose of delay.

The most recent movie that I have purchased was Harold and Kumar Escape From Guantanamo Bay. As far as movies go, it is and never was intended to be a great movie- merely completing the story arc that they started ith Harold and Kumar Go To White Castle. Comepletely politically incorrect and at times could be seen as racially offensive. However, in my eyes, the main saving grace of this movie was the poem that Kumar wrote during his college years and the recites at te end of the movie. The scene is captured below, from youtube, with Danish subtitles because everything is better in the Netherlands.

Click here to read the words of the poem, that is if you cannot read Danish.

For myself, aving toyed many a time about how to write a mathematically based poem- I now have some inspiration on how it might be accomplished. For those wondering because your minds turn off when Maths is raised, it is completely mathematically sound and logical- even though 3's clearly cannot move on their own. I don't think I will try a maths poem anytime soon, but I do plan at some stage to give it a try.


As we start to wrap at the Russian component of our studies, I cannot help but be in complete awe of how Tolstoy writes- especially after having read Master and Man. They is a subtle strength within the words he writes which not only make you feel for the characters but also makes you feel like the characters. Never before I have a read anything quite like it and I doubt I ever will.

Of the two stories we have ad to read of Tolstoy's, I prefered the conclusion of Master and Man much more than that of The Death of Ivan Illych. Maily because both of the main characters "grow" to be wiser about themselves from the experience. True, they both end up dead in the end, but Tolstoy' manages to bring such a strong significance to their deaths that it is scary.

Some day, I wish I could complete a short story with just a fraction of te power tand skill that Tostoy does because I never seem to have a problem starting them. Hmm, maybe I should then attempt to finish them...


As always, here are some poems from my commonplace book. The last one, for those who have been reading along, is the completed poem I talked about wanting to write as a parody to Lyrical Ballads. Enjoy.

A Mountain

By Jonathan Maranik

A mountain stands up ahead
beckoning to be conquered,
insisting on being tamed.
But I cannot do it.
Every step forward,
every inch higher,
just reveals more of the mountain,
more to be climbed,
more to be overcome.

I have lost sight of the top.
I don't know how much further
til my task is done,
or how far I have come.
All I can do is place
one foot int front of the other
and struggle forward.


Before I Fade.
By Jonathan Maranik
(::note:: I am intending to try and put this to music.)

Wretched feeling
Blunt and bleeding
Pour my life right
Down the drain

Cursed peeling
Crushed and reeling
Strength pulls down
Beyond the grave

I don't want to go away
I don't want to say goodbye
Save me now
Before I fade

Listless wanting
Crazed and craving
Tendrils lash me
To the stone

Bruiseless beating
Timed and Fleeting
Endless spirials
Cleft in twain

I don't want this all to end
I don't want this left in the air
Save me now
Before I fade

Drowning in this tired ocean
All that's left is torn away
Peaceful ending only fiction
all this torment blinds in grey

Tearless crying
Fake and abusing
Pity is wasted
On hopeless displays

Joyful ending
Bitter and rending
All that there was
Is no more

I don't want to go away
I don't want to say goodbye
Save me now
Before I fade

I don't want this all to end
I don't want this left in the air
Save me now
Before I fade

Save me now
Before I fade





Satirical Mallards

By Jonathan Maranik

Twas a rather balmy summer day
When I decided it was time for me to say
Something bold and freightening.
Yet, was 'twas' the right word
To start my enlightening
Or did it make me sound like a nerd.
With a plethora of choices which could be used,
Twas seemed to be the one least abused.
No other word seemed to fit
In the slit where twas did sit.

Leaving the foolishness of twas aside,
Deep into writing I did bide,
Starting with an unused word.
"About a verb?" I heard myself relay
"To me that seems rather absurd.
"You might as well write it about a bale of hay.
Your subject needs to be witty,
"Suitable for those in the field and the city.
"Within this epic and lyrical ballad,
"Shold be the tale of a satirical mallard."

"A satirical mallard?" I did reply hastly,
"Are you mad? Are you crazy?
"To suggest such a topic,
"Despite how much might be said,
"Would be like travelling somwwhere tropic
"Only to stay within a bed.
"I will not cave in,
"Nor will I ever begin
"To even consider writing
"On a topic as frightening.

"You know as well as I do,
"As you and I are one not two,
"That there is nothing we fear
"More than that head of green,
"Or it's bBody of white. It's shear
"Presence within any scene
"Shakes us right through to the bone.
"Oh, how I'd rather rave on and moan
"Than to sit here in the dark,
"Imagining a lot of them quark!"

"Quark?" The voice within then arose,
"Why that sounds more like what a nose
"On steriods makes when being blown."
"Here now," I did start, feeling rather poor
At what myself have been shown
And knowing all to well that more
Was sure to come, "I do protest
"That as of now, I have no interest
"In continueing this absurd debate,
"As we'll get no where at this rate."

Shortly there after, silence did follow
And closely partnered with a hollow
Sensation as I felt my creativity-
The source of my current distress
And any hope of poetic novelty
Of which I had aimed to express,
Depart on a long trip from my mind.
Right now I am truly in a bind,
As all I can now think of is a mallard
Being satirical and the focus of a ballad.

Jonathan Maranik
  • Current Music
    Some lame song on the work music system.

19th Century Literature Week 8 - comments.

I have a totally agree with you, Tolstoy is fantastic. What I particularly like is how as he describes his characters, yo truly feel as though you can relate to what the character is going through on almost every level. Whether is it Ivan's slow death and realisation of the ineviable, or Nikitia's inability to voice his desire to be treated better than he is.

I particulal like your poem as I can relate completely to not only tricks the mind can play when it is over worked but how sometimes what it is telling us is the truth realy is not what is teally happening in the world around us.

19th Century Literature Week 8 - Rushing headlong along with the Russians.

As the days all seem to roll into one and life just keeps getting in the way of everything, I cannot help but be amazed by Tolstoy's writing. Sure, it is not the most modern thing out there, but (like MG said) his writing is like no one elses. It has been a whil since I became completely engrossed by an author. The last two authors were Tom Holt (whom I still want to find and read more of his works) and Kurt Vonnegut. Which, for my particular tastes in literature, Tolstoy is a rather dramatic change from the comedic fiction that the other two write. I don't know if I will endup sitting down and reading War and Peace, but then again I don't know where life is going to take me.

Since my last entry, I have found piles of things within my commonpace book that I can post. At some stage I will end up posting everything I have written there, but for now I will merely add two of the poems I particular liked writing and a short grab of prose. Enjoy.

The Skies
By Jonathan Maranik

The skies above me open up
and come thundering down upon me,
but I don't mind.

I am battered lef and right, up and down
by the icy rain and temperous wind,
but I don't mind.

Not an inch of my body is untouched
by the raging forces around me,
but I don't mind.

My body is battered and broken,
pummeled by the forces swirling around me,
but I don't mind.

Beneath my battered surface is
a wound that may never heal,
but I do mind.

I continue on my way and brave the storm,
trying to face the pain within,
but I do mind.

Nothing will ever make me feel right again,
this body now means nothing to me,
but I don't mind.


By Jonathan Maranik

At first it was just one small
insignificant hread that came loose.
In the grander scheme, it was not important
to the garment.

Yet now, as the rest of the threads
follow in step and come undone as well,
What was once a great garment is now
nothing more than
tattered remains.


Janus stod on the edge of the cliff face. It seemed as though everything was leading up to this point and tha everything in the foreseeable future was shifting and changing with each passing minute. Staring blankly out at the seemingly endless wilderness all around, especially all that lay at the base f the cliff, he tired and struggled to remember what brought him here in the first place.

What brought him to the complete edge of the world.

What brought him to the edge of his life.

A cold wind roars up from far below, sending a death shiver thoughout Janus' body. For a moment, whilst he was wrestling with the wind for his life, wrestling with the motion to just go with the flow and drift over the edge. The direction the wind was puling hm seemed lik smartest direction to go in.

But what would that achieve?

What would giving his body over to the whims of the wind achieve?

Closing his eyes tightly, Janus leaned even more so over the edge. Yet, despite everything that had happened, he couldn't bring himself to tae that final step nd permentally define what his shifting future would be.

Slowly opening hi eyes on the vast vista below. The trees with their molted colours of dying leaves. The rocks and the boulders that once beloged to the cliff below him, with about 2 kilometers between him and the were they now lay.

Cautiously turning away, Janus tkes a step away from the cliff and slips.

Slips and stumbles backwards.

Backwards and over the cliff he had only just turned from.

"Well, atleast it is all over now." Janus thought as the top of the cliff raced past his head. "Atleast now I can finally be free. Heck, atleast I did not do it myself."

  • Current Music
    Misunderstanding - Genesis

19th Century Literature Week 7 - ... huh?

As I come to write this entry late again, I was considering talking about Hard Times, but with a pile of reading and other work still to get through in this the "uni break week" I am just going to post a few things from my commonplace book.

By Jonathan Maranik

Walking in step
With everyone around
Step           Step           Step
        (Step)        (Step)        (Step)
My inner beat strikes
A different tune
Step             Step               Step
        (Mosh)         (Thrust)         (Hop)
To that of those
Who are beside me.

And yet, despite my
Individual beat
Step              Step                Step
        (Crash)        (Thrash)          (Bop)
I remain the same
Stoic and in tune
Step           Step           Step
        (Step)        (Step)        (Step)
With the monotonous
Multitude all around me.

Barren Leaves
By Jonathan Maranik
Inspired by The Tables Turned by William Wordsworth

From the pages of barren leaves
that surround me daily
a new life is breathed.

One of truths previously
One of an old life

From those barren leaves
my mind has been opened
to see
to feel
 to think
to live
like I never have before.
  • Current Music
    Lightning Rod - The Offspring

19th Century Literature Week 6 - comments.

I find interesting that in your reply to my poem you turned it from being in the second person to the first person, I mainly noticed this because of obersving a year 10 special needs english class where the teacher needed to explain the concept about 10 times before they got it and even then I still don't think they got it.

As a result, your poem then focuses on what you think of the people "sleeping" on the trains whereas mine is meant to be a comment upon our society.

I also partcularly liked your response to Mariana. It is as they say "absence make the heart grow fonder" but sometimes (as you illustrated) it does not.


19th Century Literature Week 6 - Stepping out of the wilds and into technlogy...

Well, here is yet anoter late entry.

As we start this into the Victorian Era there is one thing that I noticed above and beyond everything else that was particuarly different between the new writers and those of the Romantic period.

Beards and faical hair.

Look back over the various lecture presentations and you will plainly see that for the most part the Romantic writers were clean shaven- espcially the women of the period- or pretty much close to it (such as Lord Byron and his little moe). But then as we step into the Victorian world, just abou every writer- male and female (Elisabeth Browning just made it look like it was on her head)- had a beard or similar facial hair. My favourites are as follows

Matthew Arnold and John Stuart Mill
Forefathers of modern Sideburns

Friederich Engels
and Karl Marx (on the left)
Fighting social injustice one beardless face at a time.

Oh, seeing such glorious imaging of beards (and I am not being sarcastic) makes me wish I was allowed to gow one and pay homage to those great men of the Victorian Era (stupid work forcing me to be clean hsaven). But aleast I can grow my sideburns as I wish, just like Matthew Arnold and John Stuart Mill did.


One of the big themes throghout Hard Times is the loss of childhood imaginationand innocence as they hav facts beaten into them by the education system. It is something that we, as future educators, need to be weary of- that we don't start forcing FACTS on our students. Yet, we all wil reach that point where we realise that we can not experience the world as we once used to because of the FACTS we gain as we get older (either through education or our own readings). I had one such experience on sunday night.

After church and having aready watched a movie, a friend and mysef decided we needed to watch something else- something from our youth. So, quicklyflicking through his families dvd colletion we found Hercules and just knew it was what we were going to watch. I was excited because it has been many years since I last watched it and had been wantin to for a while now.

But, just from the introduction where the muses were setting the scene, I found myself pointing out all that was wrong with it. I was shocked and screamed silently at I had killed a part of my youth by my own interest in Greek Mythology. I was at a loss because I did not think I was gong to be able to enjoy it as I used to.

And just so you all know, I did enjoy watching it nonetheless.

Jonathan Maranik

  • Current Music
    Kensington Town - UB40