Snow is white

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Poetry  |  House: Booksie Classic
'Snow is white' is a famous example of a basic factual sentence in the philosophy of language. Here the adjective and the noun are reversed. The point is that the reversal turns prose into poetry: the sentence 'white is the snow' does not represent a fact about the world; it brings a world forth. This difference is mirrored in the contrast between, wise men (philosophers), on the one hand, and poets and children, on the other. The latter are happy, totally absorbed in building their snowman/poem, and in so doing bringing forth a world; men, despite their wisdom, simply watch on, 'representing' a world which they would rather be able to inhabit unreflectively. True wisdom is the ability to do the latter; it is 'other wise'.

Submitted: January 25, 2013

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Submitted: January 25, 2013




Snow is white


Snow is white, tell us wise men.

But this is not how it is for poets;

For them, it is otherwise,

For in their eyes...


White is the snow

That in winter, from above, unfurls,

Settling down below,

Underneath the tall green firs,


Where children, glove-clad,

Gather and mould it into men,

And men, love-sad,

Wish to be young again.

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