City of Bones and Poetry

While I’m not a crazy Cassandra Clare fan, I do have a deep respect for her poetry (and literature) choices. At the start of every section of her books, she chooses a relevant quote, most of which I’m madly in love with. So here’s my collection of poetry mentioned in the City of Bones!

Julius Caesar by William Shakespeare – I love that this quote gives us a little insight into the creation of Clare’s fantasy world. Also it’s beautiful.

I have not slept.

Between the acting of a dreadful thing

And the first motion, all the interim is

Like a phantasma, or a hideous dream:

The Genius and the mortal instruments

Are then in council; and the state of man,

Like to a little kingdom, suffers then

The nature of an insurrection.

Paradise Lost by John Milton – This epic poem is fantastic, although very long!

I sung of Chaos and eternal Night,

Taught by the heav’nly Muse to venture down

The dark descent, and up to reascend…

The Aeneid by Virgil – I believe this is Latin. You’ll have to excuse me if you’re all experts in Latin and I’ve been completely patronising in providing a translation, but I for one had no idea what it meant!

Facilis descensus Averno:

Noctes atque dies patet atri iaunua Ditis;

Sed revocare gradum superasque evadere ad auras,

Hoc opus, hic labor est.

(The descent to the underworld is easy; the door of terrible Dis (god of the underworld) is open by day and night. But to retrace the step and to escape upwards to the air, that is the work, that is the struggle.)

The Descent by William Carlos Williams – Lets take a moment to appreciate that name. Poor guy. Anyway, this is an absolutely beautiful poem that you really should read. It’s format is interesting too, but I’m afraid I couldn’t replicate that here.

A world lost,

a world unsuspected,

beckons to new places

and no whiteness is so white as the memory of whiteness.

And that’s all for the quotes mentioned in City of Bones by Cassandra Clare. What did you think of the poems mentioned? Are there any new writers there for you? (there were for me!)

Thanks for reading, and have a lovely day.



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