Beauty is inflexible.
Beauty does not change. Though the person who is beautiful fades, and the light changes, beauty does not. It reflects higher: to the forms by which all things are truly known.
Though many call that which is ugly beautiful this is a lie. It is modern propaganda. It is something mandated by sheer force of power, and the worship of this is a lie.
The Modern man is asked to be flexible in his religion, also. He is asked not to consider his religion’s proclamations and prescriptions as anything lasting and final. He is asked to surrender his claim, as an adherent, that his religion holds a monopoly on the truth—indeed, that there is any truth at all, at least any to be found in religion. He is asked to make way in his churches, his synagogues, even his mosques for those who would claim to believe what he believes without showing forth evidence to support these beliefs; in other words, those who claim adherence while not practicing the religion’s tenets.
The Modern man is taught to view his religion as merely one among many on the Earth, and taught further that, since all of them are equal (equally wrong, from a Modern perspective), they all deserve support and toleration, and no one should be preferred to the other.
The Modern man is asked to be flexible about certain things which his intuition might tell him are fairly inflexible. He is asked to be flexible about the relationship between men and women, and even about what ‘man’ and ‘woman’ truly mean. He is asked to be flexible about greatness—about ideas of what constitute greatness, and about which individuals are truly considered great.
I speculate. Perhaps Pound was a fascist — and he was — because he did not like modernism, this compulsory flexibility, this demand for tolerance. He was too well educated, and he knew the ancients had better standards.
Aye! I am a poet and upon my tomb
Shall maidens scatter rose leaves
And men myrtles, ere the night
Slays day with her dark sword.
‘Lo ! this thing is not mine
Nor thine to hinder,
For the custom is full old,
And here in Nineveh have I beheld
Many a singer pass and take his place
In those dim halls where no man troubleth
His sleep or song.
And many a one hath sung his songs
More craftily, more subtle-souled than I;
And many a one now doth surpass
My wave-worn beauty with his wind of flowers,
Yet am I poet, and upon my tomb
Shall all men scatter rose leaves
Ere the night slay light
With her blue sword.
‘It is not, Raana, that my song rings highest
Or more sweet in tone than any, but that I
Am here a Poet, that doth drink of life
As lesser men drink wine.’