(1311-02-27) De Quiete
RL Date: 03/03/2019
Related: Read To Me, Day of Eisheth: Performance Contest, The Shaming of Poetkind.

A philosophical treatise in 999 lines of Tiberian dactylic hexameter, entitled De Quiete; or, About Rest. Its nine unmarked sections of 111 lines apiece are crafted to balance and reflect one another and yet to flow together, seamlessly, into a single cohesive work. The poet has made liberal use of Hellenic terminology, cf. footnotes at the bottom of each page, facing which there is an oratio soluta translation into d’Angeline for those who are not scholars.

The first triad: Quies in Nature.

Section 1: An opening hymn to Naamah as the source of all rest and peace. Scriptural and mythological stories re-framed to suit the theme. An invocation to an unnamed Muse to accompany the writer through his trials and lead him to the font of poetic inspiration.

Section 2: A catalogue, in the tradition of Natural Philosophy, of examples of quies in the natural world; and a description of all things flowing into their fitting positions wherein they may be at rest under the eternal laws of Nature.

Section 3: The converse. Examples of the natural world lacking in quies, and things striving to be where they ought not. Storms and hurricanes, natural disasters, &c.

The second triad: Quies in Man.

Section 4: The tale of a man who cannot find quies, who wants and craves far above and beyond what is given him by Nature and by Fate, and who is tortured by desires which can never find fulfillment.

Section 5: The poet’s voice transitions into the first person, in a meditation upon giving himself over to quies beneath the guiding hand of his Muse. She has many names — Nature, Fate, Right Thinking, Correctness — but all her guises have the same truth at their core.

Section 6: A description of a man in an ideal state of quies. Ideals of ataraxia and apragmosyne, with a Stoic twist toward social duty and responsibility to one’s community.

The final triad: Quies in Society.

Section 7: Directly continuing from the previous, this section tells of what a (noble) man who has achieved that ideal quies can do for the benefit of the people he governs, and how the state as a whole might be perfected by the attainment of its own quies.

Section 8: The social problems which ensue when one subtracts quies from such an optimal society: poverty, crime, civil strife. The description of a plague, dwelling at length upon the full horrors of death, illness, and man’s inhumanity to man in his hour of need.

Section 9: A summary of the poet’s findings and, in a conclusion which bookends the first section, a prayer for peace and quies to all people, everywhere.

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