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Benway

Poetry Thread

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Saharah Blue

The Waking

I wake to sleep, and take my waking slow.

I feel my fate in what I cannot fear.

I learn by going where I have to go.

We think by feeling. What is there to know?

I hear my being dance from ear to ear.

I wake to sleep, and take my waking slow.

Of those so close beside me, which are you?

God bless the Ground! I shall walk softly there,

And learn by going where I have to go.

Light takes the Tree; but who can tell us how?

The lowly worm climbs up a winding stair;

I wake to sleep, and take my waking slow.

Great Nature has another thing to do

To you and me; so take the lively air,

And, lovely, learn by going where to go.

This shaking keeps me steady. I should know.

What falls away is always. And is near.

I wake to sleep, and take my waking slow.

I learn by going where I have to go.

by Theodore Roethke

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Kitsune

Going Places

Another
cigarette ash
television serial filled
advert analysing
cupboard starving
front room filling
tea slurping
mind chewing
brain burping
carpet picking
pots watching
room gleaning
toilet flushing
night,
with nothing to do

I think I'll paint roads
on my front room walls
to convince myself
that I'm going places.

By Lemn Sissay

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Benway

I studied this poem at school, and my son is studying it now.

Felix Randal by Gerard Manley Hopkins

Felix Randal the farrier, O is he dead then? my duty all ended,
Who have watched his mould of man, big-boned and hardy-handsome
Pining, pining, till time when reason rambled in it, and some
Fatal four disorders, fleshed there, all contended?


Sickness broke him. Impatient, he cursed at first, but mended
Being anointed and all; though a heavenlier heart began some
Months earlier, since I had our sweet reprieve and ransom
Tendered to him. Ah well, God rest him all road ever he offended!


This seeing the sick endears them to us, us too it endears.
My tongue had taught thee comfort, touch had quenched thy tears,
Thy tears that touched my heart, child, Felix, poor Felix Randal;


How far from then forethought of, all thy more boisterous years,
When thou at the random grim forge, powerful amidst peers,
Didst fettle for the great grey drayhorse his bright and battering sandal!

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maddy harper

i sit and wait, for the sound of your voice, the tutch of your hand on mine, the feel of you in my arms, i sit and wait... maddy harper x

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Saharah Blue

The Year

What can be said in New Year rhymes,
That's not been said a thousand times?
The new years come, the old years go,
We know we dream, we dream we know.
We rise up laughing with the light,
We lie down weeping with the night.
We hug the world until it stings,
We curse it then and sigh for wings.
We live, we love, we woo, we wed,
We wreathe our prides, we sheet our dead.
We laugh, we weep, we hope, we fear,
And that's the burden of a year.

by Ella Wheeler Wilcox

I thought this fitting for the season and the ending and soon to be beginning of a new one.

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Saharah Blue

Ring out the old, ring in the new, Ring, happy bells, across the snow: The year is going, let him go; Ring out the false, ring in the true.

by Alfred, Lord Tennyson

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Saharah Blue

On Problems

Our choicest plans

have fallen through

our airiest castles

tumbled over

because of lines

we neatly drew

and later neatly

stumbled over.

by Piet Hein

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Saharah Blue

Threnody

Lilacs blossom just as sweet

Now my heart is shattered.

If I bowled it down the street,

Who's to say it mattered?

If there's one that rode away

What would I be missing?

Lips that taste of tears, they say,

Are the best for kissing.

Eyes that watch the morning star

Seem a little brighter;

Arms held out to darkness are

Usually whiter.

Shall I bar the strolling guest,

Bind my brow with willow,

When, they say, the empty breast

Is the softer pillow?

That a heart falls tinkling down,

Never think it ceases.

Every likely lad in town

Gathers up the pieces.

If there's one gone whistling by

Would I let it grieve me?

Let him wonder if I lie;

Let him half believe me.

by Dorothy Parker

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Kitsune

My two faves from GCSE English

"Little Boy Crying"

By Mervyn Morris

Your mouth contorting in brief spite and
Hurt, your laughter metamorphosed into howls,
Your frame so recently relaxed now tight
With three-year-old frustration, your bright eyes

Swimming tears, splashing your bare feet,
You stand there angling for a moment's hint
Of guilt or sorrow for the quick slap struck.

The ogre towers above you, that grim giant,
Empty of feeling, a colossal cruel,
Soon victim of the tale's conclusion, dead
At last. You hate him, you imagine
Chopping clean the tree he's scrambling down
Or plotting deeper pits to trap him in.

You cannot understand, not yet,
The hurt your easy tears can scald him with,
Nor guess the wavering hidden behind that mask.
This fierce man longs to lift you, curb your sadness
With piggy-back or bull-fight, anything,
But dare not ruin the lessons you should learn.

You must not make a plaything of the rain.

Rising Five- Norman Nicholson

"I'm rising five" he said
"Not four" and the little coils of hair
Un-clicked themselves upon his head.
His spectacles, brimful of eyes to stare
At me and the meadow, reflected cones of light
Above his toffee-buckled cheeks. He'd been alive
Fifty-six months or perhaps a week more;

Not four

But rising five.

Around him in the field, the cells of spring
Bubbled and doubled; buds unbuttoned; shoot
And stem shook out the creases from their frills,
And every tree was swilled with green.
It was the season after blossoming,
Before the forming of the fruit:

Not May

But rising June.

And in the sky

The dust dissected the tangential light:

Not day

But rising night;

Not now

But rising soon.

The new buds push the old leaves from the bough.
We drop our youth behind us like a boy
Throwing away his toffee-wrappers. We never see the flower,
But only the fruit in the flower; never the fruit,
But only the rot in the fruit. We look for the marriage bed
In the baby's cradle; we look for the grave in the bed;

Not living
But rising dead.
I don't know why they struck such a chord with me, maybe because these were the ones we covered, but they hold a special place. I think the first is important to me because it shows the difference between a child and it's guardian's view on something. It shows how the child reacts to being told off and just why the parent has done so -and how the parents feels to have told their child off.
The second one I like because it shows what a rush we are often in to 'grow up', we never seem to appreciate the present, always carelessly looking for the next step.

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Saharah Blue

Your Feet

When I cannot look at your face

I look at your feet.

Your feet of arched bone,

your hard little feet.

I know that they support you,

and that your sweet weight

rises upon them.

Your waist and your breasts,

the doubled purple

of your nipples,

the sockets of your eyes

that have just flown away,

your wide fruit mouth,

your red tresses,

my little tower.

But I love your feet

only because they walked

upon the earth and upon

the wind and upon the waters,

until they found me.

by Pablo Neruda

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Saharah Blue

Love

Because of you,

in gardens of blossoming flowers

I ache from the perfumes of spring.

I have forgotten your face,

I no longer remember your hands;

how did your lips feel on mine?

Because of you,

I love the white statues drowsing in the parks,

the white statues that have neither voice nor sight.

I have forgotten your voice, your happy voice; I have forgotten your eyes.

Like a flower to its perfume, I am bound to my vague memory of you. I live with pain that is like a wound;

if you touch me, you will do me irreparable harm.

Your caresses enfold me,

like climbing vines on melancholy walls.

I have forgotten your love,

yet I seem to glimpse you in every

window.

by Pablo Neruda

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Saharah Blue

(continued). . . Because of you, the heady perfumes of summer pain me; because

of you, I again seek out the signs that precipitate desires: shooting

stars, falling objects.

by Pablo Neruda

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Benway

Memory of my Father

by Patrick Kavanagh

Every old man I see

Reminds me of my father

When he had fallen in love with death

One time when sheaves were gathered.

That man I saw in Gardner Street

Stumbled on the kerb was one,

He stared at me half-eyed,

I might have been his son.

And I remember the musician

Faltering over his fiddle

In Bayswater, London,

He too set me the riddle.

Every old man I see

In October-coloured weather

Seems to say to me:

"I was once your father."

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Benway

September 1913

by William Butler Yeats

What need you, being come to sense,

But fumble in a greasy till

And add the halfpence to the pence

And prayer to shivering prayer, until

You have dried the marrow from the bone?

For men were born to pray and save:

Romantic Ireland's dead and gone,

It's with O'Leary in the grave.

Yet they were of a different kind,

The names that stilled your childish play,

They have gone about the world like wind,

But little time had they to pray

For whom the hangman's rope was spun,

And what, God help us, could they save?

Romantic Ireland's dead and gone,

It's with O'Leary in the grave.

Was it for this the wild geese spread

The grey wing upon every tide;

For this that all that blood was shed,

For this Edward Fitzgerald died,

And Robert Emmet and Wolfe Tone,

All that delirium of the brave?

Romantic Ireland's dead and gone,

It's with O'Leary in the grave.

Yet could we turn the years again,

And call those exiles as they were

In all their loneliness and pain,

You'd cry, 'Some woman's yellow hair

Has maddened every mother's son':

They weighed so lightly what they gave.

But let them be, they're dead and gone,

They're with O'Leary in the grave.

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Saharah Blue

Tricks with Mirrors

i

It's no coincidence

this is a used

furniture warehouse.

I enter with you

and become a mirror.

Mirrors

are the perfect lovers,

that's it, carry me up the stairs

by the edges, don't drop me,

that would be back luck,

throw me on the bed

reflecting side up,

fall into me,

it will be your own

mouth you hit, firm and glassy,

your own eyes you find you

are up against closed closed

ii

There is more to a mirror

than you looking at

your full-length body

flawless but reversed,

there is more than this dead blue

oblong eye turned outwards to you.

Think about the frame.

The frame is carved, it is important,

it exists, it does not reflect you,

it does not recede and recede, it has limits

and reflections of its own.

There's a nail in the back

to hang it with; there are several nails,

think about the nails,

pay attention to the nail

marks in the wood,

they are important too.

iii

Don't assume it is passive

or easy, this clarity

with which I give you yourself.

Consider what restraint it

takes: breath withheld, no anger

or joy disturbing the surface

of the ice.

You are suspended in me

beautiful and frozen, I

preserve you, in me you are safe.

It is not a trick either,

it is a craft:

mirrors are crafty.

iv

I wanted to stop this,

this life flattened against the wall,

mute and devoid of colour,

built of pure light,

this life of vision only, split

and remote, a lucid impasse.

I confess: this is not a mirror,

it is a door

I am trapped behind.

I wanted you to see me here,

say the releasing word, whatever

that may be, open the wall.

Instead you stand in front of me

combing your hair.

v

You don't like these metaphors.

All right:

Perhaps I am not a mirror.

Perhaps I am a pool.

Think about pools.

-- Margaret Atwood

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Saharah Blue

No Road

Since we agreed to let the road between us
Fall to disuse,
And bricked our gates up, planted trees to screen us,
And turned all time's eroding agents loose,
Silence, and space, and strangers - our neglect
Has not had much effect.

Leaves drift unswept, perhaps; grass creeps unmown;
No other change.
So clear it stands, so little overgrown,
Walking that way tonight would not seem strange,
And still would be followed. A little longer,
And time would be the stronger,

Drafting a world where no such road will run
From you to me;
To watch that world come up like a cold sun,
Rewarding others, is my liberty.
Not to prevent it is my will's fulfillment.
Willing it, my ailment.

by Philip Larkin

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Saharah Blue

Six Significant Landscapes

       
I
 An old man sits
 In the shadow of a pine tree
 In China.
 He sees larkspur,
 Blue and white,
 At the edge of the shadow,
 Move in the wind.
 His beard moves in the wind.
 The pine tree moves in the wind.
 Thus water flows
 Over weeds.

        II
 The night is of the colour
 Of a woman's arm:
 Night, the female,
 Obscure,
 Fragrant and supple,
 Conceals herself.
 A pool shines,
 Like a bracelet
 Shaken in a dance.

        III
 I measure myself
 Against a tall tree.
 I find that I am much taller,
 For I reach right up to the sun,
 With my eye;
 And I reach to the shore of the sea
 With my ear.
 Nevertheless, I dislike
 The way ants crawl
 In and out of my shadow.

        IV
 When my dream was near the moon,
 The white folds of its gown
 Filled with yellow light.
 The soles of its feet
 Grew red.
 Its hair filled
 With certain blue crystallizations
 From stars,
 Not far off.

        V
 Not all the knives of the lamp-posts,
 Nor the chisels of the long streets,
 Nor the mallets of the domes
 And high towers,
 Can carve
 What one star can carve,
 Shining through the grape-leaves.

        VI
 Rationalists, wearing square hats,
 Think, in square rooms,
 Looking at the floor,
 Looking at the ceiling.
 They confine themselves
 To right-angled triangles.
 If they tried rhomboids,
 Cones, waving lines, ellipses --
 As, for example, the ellipse of the half-moon--
 Rationalists would wear sombreros.

by Wallace Stevens

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Saharah Blue

Separation

Your absence has gone through me

Like thread through a needle.

Everything I do is stitched with its color.

by W.S. Merwin

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Pye Dog

Prayer Before Birth

I am not yet born; O hear me.

Let not the bloodsucking bat or the rat or the stoat or the

club-footed ghoul come near me.

I am not yet born, console me.

I fear that the human race may with tall walls wall me,

with strong drugs dope me, with wise lies lure me,

on black racks rack me, in blood-baths roll me.

I am not yet born; provide me

With water to dandle me, grass to grow for me, trees to talk

to me, sky to sing to me, birds and a white light

in the back of my mind to guide me.

I am not yet born; forgive me

For the sins that in me the world shall commit, my words

when they speak me, my thoughts when they think me,

my treason engendered by traitors beyond me,

my life when they murder by means of my

hands, my death when they live me.

I am not yet born; rehearse me

In the parts I must play and the cues I must take when

old men lecture me, bureaucrats hector me, mountains

frown at me, lovers laugh at me, the white

waves call me to folly and the desert calls

me to doom and the beggar refuses

my gift and my children curse me.

I am not yet born; O hear me,

Let not the man who is beast or who thinks he is God

come near me.

I am not yet born: O fill me

With strength against those who would freeze my

humanity, would dragoon me into a lethal automaton,

would make me a cog in a machine, a thing with

one face, a thing, and against all those

who would dissipate my entirety, would

blow me like thistledown hither and

thither or hither and thither

like water held in the

hands would spill me.

Let them not make me a stone and let them not spill me.

Otherwise kill me.

Louis MacNeice (1944)

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Apollo 13

Separation

Your absence has gone through me

Like thread through a needle.

Everything I do is stitched with its color.

by W.S. Merwin

WOW.....so few words, such great emotion!!

Thank you for posting!! XX

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Saharah Blue

The Life That I Have

The life that I have

Is all that I have

And the life that I have

Is yours

The love that I have

Of the life that I have

Is yours and yours and yours.

A sleep I shall have

A rest I shall have

Yet death will be but a pause

For the peace of my years

In the long green grass

Will be yours and yours and yours.

by Leo Marks

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Kitsune
I Do Not Love Thee by Caroline Elizabeth Sarah Norton
I do not love thee!—no! I do not love thee!
And yet when thou art absent I am sad;
   And envy even the bright blue sky above thee,
Whose quiet stars may see thee and be glad.

I do not love thee!—yet, I know not why,
Whate’er thou dost seems still well done, to me:
   And often in my solitude I sigh
That those I do love are not more like thee!

I do not love thee!—yet, when thou art gone,
I hate the sound (though those who speak be dear)
   Which breaks the lingering echo of the tone
Thy voice of music leaves upon my ear.

I do not love thee!—yet thy speaking eyes,
With their deep, bright, and most expressive blue,
   Between me and the midnight heaven arise,
Oftener than any eyes I ever knew.

I know I do not love thee! yet, alas!
Others will scarcely trust my candid heart;
   And oft I catch them smiling as they pass,
Because they see me gazing where thou art.

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Pye Dog

"Hope" is the thing with feathers -

That perches in the soul -

And sings the tune without the words -

And never stops - at all -

And sweetest - in the Gale - is heard -

And sore must be the storm -

That could abash the little Bird

That kept so many warm -

I've heard it in the chillest land -

And on the strangest Sea -

Yet, never, in Extremity,

It asked a Crumb - of Me.

Emily Dickinson

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