Pathetic Fallacy

Pathetic Fallacy illustration
Dry grasses have weathered;
beneath the rain’s autumn knell
mildew creeps under rotting wood.

Over the darkening grass, I imagine
the dank abode of man, fixed
to the flesh, married like a snail
with the skin.
Clods of turf, distant cries
from the primeval soil,
root him to the scorched earth.
He cannot see nor feel –
he is a prisoner, subject to
five indelible wits.
Above him, the heavens maintain
a dispassionate vigil;
the moon is its slave,
straddling the unquiet night.

His body hangs in reverence –
an oblation to mysteries;
I see him imitate the ethereal stars,
his smile is perfection.


Pathetic Fallacy – a term used by the Victorian art critic John Ruskin (1819-1900) to describe the elevated state of individuals when emotionally affected by natural landscapes.