Home After Three Months Away by Robert Lowell (read by Tom O'Bedlam)
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Uploaded on Sep 20, 2009
After three months in the looney-bin, McLean Hospital in Belmont, Boston, Lowell is looking for his new identity, examining those things which are familiar is his surroundings for clues.
Psychoanalysis was in vogue at the time and it's what really characterises the Confessional Poets. This was when it appeared that it offered salvation rather than destruction, and before they realised that the self will disintegrate if examined too closely and proper regard should be directed outwards to other people and one's vocation in life. Poor Robert got the worst kind of help.
NOTE. From comments received it seems that an explanation is required. Psychoanalysis was a form of psychotherapy pioneered by Sigmund Freud and now virtually abandoned. Very few mental patients are psychoanalysed these days. Robert Lowell's experiences are documented on the web, and if you want to read about his Oedipus Complex and so forth, I'm sure you can find what you're looking for.
Of course psychiatrists like the rest of medical profession close ranks and don't admit their past mistakes and incredibly barbarous malpractices: that might reduce the artificial status upon which their profession depends and prevent them from continuing their lucrative conspiracy against the layman.
Okay, I admit that last cutting phrase was borrowed from George Bernard Shaw: "Every profession is a conspiracy against the layman."
"Is Richard now himself again?" is an obscure reference. There's a famous line by Colley Cibber (1671-1767) in his verion of Richard III, "Richard is himself again" This simple phrase that everybody uses came from this.
There's a reference to the Sermon on the Mount, "Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow; they neither toil nor spin, yet I tell you, even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these "
Lowell mentions Magnolias often and they are a feature of Boston. The picture is of Magnolias in Boston but whether there is any proximity to his house I don't know.
This is Robert Lowell reading "Old Flame":
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