POETRY LOVERS: New Batch of Poems

Discussion in 'Fibromyalgia Main Forum' started by windblade, May 21, 2006.

  1. windblade

    windblade Active Member

    In Several Colors
    by Jane Kenyon

    Every morning, cup of coffee
    in hand, I look out at the mountain.
    Ordinarily, it's blue, but today
    it's the color of an eggplant.

    And the sky turns
    from gray to pale apricot
    as the sun rolls up
    Main Street in Andover.

    I study the cat's face
    and find a trace of white
    around each eye, as if
    he made himself up today
    for a part in the opera.
    [This Message was Edited on 05/21/2006]
  2. LittleBluestem

    LittleBluestem New Member

    The Pasture
    by Robert Frost

    I'm going out to clean the pasture spring;
    I'll only stop to rake the leaves away
    (And wait to watch the water clear, I may):
    I shan't be gone long. -- You come too.

    I'm going out to fetch the little calf
    That's standing by the mother. It's so young,
    It totters when she licks it with her tongue.
    I shan't be gone long. -- You come too.
  3. hangininthere

    hangininthere Well-Known Member

    Let Evening Come - by Jane Kenyon

    Let the light of late afternoon
    shine through chinks in the barn, moving
    up the bales as the sun moves down.

    Let the cricket take up chafing
    as a woman takes up her needles
    and her yarn. Let evening come.

    Let dew collect on the hoe abandoned
    in long grass. Let the stars appear
    and the moon disclose her silver horn.

    Let the fox go back to its sandy den.
    Let the wind die down. Let the shed
    go black inside. Let evening come.

    To the bottle in the ditch, to the scoop
    in the oats, to air in the lung
    let evening come.

    Let it come, as it will, and don't
    be afraid. God does not leave us
    comfortless, so let evening come.

    by Pablo Neruda

    From the window I saw the horses.

    I was in Berlin, in winter. The light
    was without light, the sky skyless.

    The air white like a moistened loaf.

    From my window, I could see a deserted arena,
    a circle bitten out by the teeth of winter.

    All at once, led out by a single man,
    ten horses were stepping, stepping into the snow.

    Scarcely had they rippled into existence
    like flame, than they filled the whole world of my eyes,
    empty till now. Faultless, flaming,
    they stepped like ten gods on broad, clean hoofs,
    their manes recalling a dream of salt spray.

    Their rumps were globes, were oranges.

    Their color was amber and honey, was on fire.

    Their necks were towers
    carved from the stone of pride,
    and in their furious eyes, sheer energy
    showed itself, a prisoner inside them.

    And there, in the silence, at the mid-
    point of the day, in a dirty, disgruntled winter,
    the horses' intense presence was blood,
    was rhythm, was the beckoning light of all being.

    I saw, I saw, and seeing, I came to life.
    There was the unwitting fountain, the dance of gold, the sky,
    the fire that sprang to life in beautiful things.

    I have obliterated that gloomy Berlin winter.

    I shall not forget the light from these horses.

    The Runaway
    by Robert Frost

    Once when the snow of the year was beginning to fall,
    We stopped by a mountain pasture to say, "Whose colt?"
    A little Morgan had one forefoot on the wall,
    The other curled at his breast. He dipped his head
    And snorted to us. And then we saw him bolt.
    We heard the miniature thunder where he fled,
    And we saw him, or thought we saw him, dim and gray,
    Like a shadow across instead of behind the flakes.
    The little fellow's afraid of the falling snow.
    He never saw it before. It isn't play
    With the little fellow at all. He's running away.
    He wouldn't believe when his mother told him, 'Sakes,
    It's only weather.' He thought she didn't know!
    So this is something he has to bear alone
    And now he comes again with a clatter of stone,
    He mounts the wall again with whited eyes
    Dilated nostrils, and tail held straight up straight.
    He shudders his coat as if to throw off flies.
    "Whoever it is that leaves him out so late,
    When all other creatures have gone to stall and bin,
    Ought to be told to come and take him in."


    Part I

    On either side the river lie
    Long fields of barley and of rye,
    That clothe the wold and meet the sky;
    And thro' the field the road runs by
    To many-tower'd Camelot;
    And up and down the people go,
    Gazing where the lilies blow
    Round an island there below,
    The island of Shalott.

    Willows whiten, aspens quiver,
    Little breezes dusk and shiver
    Thro' the wave that runs for ever
    By the island in the river
    Flowing down to Camelot.
    Four gray walls, and four gray towers,
    Overlook a space of flowers,
    And the silent isle imbowers
    The Lady of Shalott.

    By the margin, willow-veil'd
    Slide the heavy barges trail'd
    By slow horses; and unhail'd
    The shallop flitteth silken-sail'd
    Skimming down to Camelot:
    But who hath seen her wave her hand?
    Or at the casement seen her stand?
    Or is she known in all the land,
    The Lady of Shalott?

    Only reapers, reaping early
    In among the bearded barley,
    Hear a song that echoes cheerly
    From the river winding clearly,
    Down to tower'd Camelot:
    And by the moon the reaper weary,
    Piling sheaves in uplands airy,
    Listening, whispers "'Tis the fairy
    Lady of Shalott."

    Part II

    There she weaves by night and day
    A magic web with colours gay.
    She has heard a whisper say,
    A curse is on her if she stay
    To look down to Camelot.
    She knows not what the curse may be,
    And so she weaveth steadily,
    And little other care hath she,
    The Lady of Shalott.

    And moving thro' a mirror clear
    That hangs before her all the year,
    Shadows of the world appear.
    There she sees the highway near
    Winding down to Camelot:
    There the river eddy whirls,
    And there the surly village-churls,
    And the red cloaks of market girls,
    Pass onward from Shalott.

    Sometimes a troop of damsels glad,
    An abbot on an ambling pad,
    Sometimes a curly shepherd-lad,
    Or long-hair'd page in crimson clad,
    Goes by to tower'd Camelot;
    And sometimes thro' the mirror blue
    The knights come riding two and two:
    She hath no loyal knight and true,
    The Lady of Shalott.

    But in her web she still delights
    To weave the mirror's magic sights,
    For often thro' the silent nights
    A funeral, with plumes and lights
    And music, went to Camelot:
    Or when the moon was overhead,
    Came two young lovers lately wed;
    "I am half-sick of shadows," said
    The Lady of Shalott.

    Part III

    A bow-shot from her bower-eaves,
    He rode between the barley-sheaves,
    The sun came dazzling thro' the leaves,
    And flamed upon the brazen greaves
    Of bold Sir Lancelot.
    A redcross knight for ever kneel'd
    To a lady in his shield,
    That sparkled on the yellow field,
    Beside remote Shalott.

    The gemmy bridle glitter'd free,
    Like to some branch of stars we see
    Hung in the golden Galaxy.
    The bridle-bells rang merrily
    As he rode down to Camelot:
    And from his blazon'd baldric slung
    A mighty silver bugle hung,
    And as he rode his armour rung,
    Beside remote Shalott.

    All in the blue unclouded weather
    Thick-jewell'd shone the saddle-leather,
    The helmet and the helmet-feather
    Burn'd like one burning flame together,
    As he rode down to Camelot.
    As often thro' the purple night,
    Below the starry clusters bright,
    Some bearded meteor, trailing light,
    Moves over still Shalott.

    His broad clear brow in sunlight glow'd;
    On burnish'd hooves his war-horse trode;
    From underneath his helmet flow'd
    His coal-black curls as on he rode,
    As he rode down to Camelot.
    From the bank and from the river
    He flash'd into the crystal mirror,
    "Tirra lirra," by the river
    Sang Sir Lancelot.

    She left the web, she left the loom,
    She made three paces thro' the room,
    She saw the water-lily bloom,
    She saw the helmet and the plume,
    She look'd down to Camelot.
    Out flew the web and floated wide;
    The mirror crack'd from side to side;
    "The curse is come upon me," cried
    The Lady of Shalott.

    Part IV

    In the stormy east-wind straining,
    The pale-yellow woods were waning,
    The broad stream in his banks complaining,
    Heavily the low sky raining
    Over tower'd Camelot;
    Down she came and found a boat
    Beneath a willow left afloat,
    And round about the prow she wrote
    The Lady of Shalott.

    And down the river's dim expanse--
    Like some bold seër in a trance,
    Seeing all his own mischance--
    With a glassy countenance
    Did she look to Camelot.
    And at the closing of the day
    She loosed the chain, and down she lay;
    The broad stream bore her far away,
    The Lady of Shalott.

    Lying, robed in snowy white
    That loosely flew to left and right--
    The leaves upon her falling light--
    Thro' the noises of the night
    She floated down to Camelot:
    And as the boat-head wound along
    The willowy hills and fields among,
    They heard her singing her last song,
    The Lady of Shalott.

    Heard a carol, mournful, holy,
    Chanted loudly, chanted lowly,
    Till her blood was frozen slowly,
    And her eyes were darken'd wholly,
    Turn'd to tower'd Camelot;
    For ere she reach'd upon the tide
    The first house by the water-side,
    Singing in her song she died,
    The Lady of Shalott.

    Under tower and balcony,
    By garden-wall and gallery,
    A gleaming shape she floated by,
    A corse between the houses high,
    Silent into Camelot.
    Out upon the wharfs they came,
    Knight and burgher, lord and dame,
    And round the prow they read her name,
    The Lady of Shalott.

    Who is this? and what is here?
    And in the lighted palace near
    Died the sound of royal cheer;
    And they cross'd themselves for fear,
    All the knights at Camelot:
    But Lancelot mused a little space;
    He said, "She has a lovely face;
    God in his mercy lend her grace,
    The Lady of Shalott.

    The Map
    by Elizabeth Bishop

    Land lies in water; it is shadowed green.
    Shadows, or are they shallows, at its edges
    showing the line of long sea-weeded ledges
    where weeds hang to the simple blue from green.
    Or does the land lean down to lift the sea from under,
    drawing it unperturbed around itself?
    Along the fine tan sandy shelf
    is the land tugging at the sea from under?

    The shadow of Newfoundland lies flat and still.
    Labrador's yellow, where the moony Eskimo
    has oiled it. We can stroke these lovely bays,
    under a glass as if they were expected to blossom,
    or as if to provide a clean cage for invisible fish.
    The names of seashore towns run out to sea,
    the names of cities cross the neighboring mountains
    -the printer here experiencing the same excitement
    as when emotion too far exceeds its cause.
    These peninsulas take the water between thumb and finger
    like women feeling for the smoothness of yard-goods.

    Mapped waters are more quiet than the land is,
    lending the land their waves' own conformation:
    and Norway's hare runs south in agitation,
    profiles investigate the sea, where land is.
    Are they assigned, or can the countries pick their colors?
    -What suits the character or the native waters best.
    Topography displays no favorites; North's as near as West.
    More delicate than the historians' are the map-makers' colors.

    Ikon: The Harrowing of Hell
    by Denise Levertov

    Down through the tomb's inward arch
    He has shouldered out into Limbo
    to gather them, dazed, from dreamless slumber:
    the merciful dead, the prophets,
    the innocents just His own age and those
    unnumbered others waiting here
    unaware, in an endless void He is ending
    now, stooping to tug at their hands,
    to pull them from their sarcophagi,
    dazzled, almost unwilling. Didmas,
    neighbor in death, Golgotha dust
    still streaked on the dried sweat of his body
    no one had washed and anointed, is here,
    for sequence is not known in Limbo;
    the promise, given from cross to cross
    at noon, arches beyond sunset and dawn.
    All these He will swiftly lead
    to the Paradise road: they are safe.
    That done, there must take place that struggle
    no human presumes to picture:
    living, dying, descending to rescue the just
    from shadow, were lesser travails
    than this: to break
    through earth and stone of the faithless world
    back to the cold sepulchre, tearstained
    stifling shroud; to break from them
    back into breath and heartbeat, and walk
    the world again, closed into days and weeks again,
    wounds of His anguish open, and Spirit
    streaming through every cell of flesh
    so that if mortal sight could bear
    to perceive it, it would be seen
    His mortal flesh was lit from within, now,
    and aching for home. He must return,
    first, in Divine patience, and know
    hunger again, and give
    to humble friends the joy
    of giving Him food--fish and a honeycomb.

    The Lake Isle of Innisfree
    by William Butler Yeats

    I WILL arise and go now, and go to Innisfree,
    And a small cabin build there, of clay and wattles made;
    Nine bean rows will I have there, a hive for the honey bee,
    And live alone in the bee-loud glade.

    And I shall have some peace there, for peace comes dropping slow,
    Dropping from the veils of the morning to where the cricket sings;
    There midnight's all a glimmer, and noon a purple glow,
    And evening full of the linnet's wings.

    I will arise and go now, for always night and day
    I hear lake water lapping with low sounds by the shore;
    While I stand on the roadway, or on the pavements gray,
    I hear it in the deep heart's core.

    When You Are Old
    by William Butler Yeats

    WHEN you are old and grey and full of sleep,
    And nodding by the fire, take down this book,
    And slowly read, and dream of the soft look
    Your eyes had once, and of their shadows deep;

    How many loved your moments of glad grace,
    And loved your beauty with love false or true,
    But one man loved the pilgrim Soul in you,
    And loved the sorrows of your changing face;

    And bending down beside the glowing bars,
    Murmur, a little sadly, how Love fled
    And paced upon the mountains overhead
    And hid his face amid a crowd of stars.

    Flickering Mind
    by Denise Levertov

    Lord, not you,
    it is I who am absent.
    At first
    belief was a joy I kept in secret,
    stealing alone
    into sacred places:
    a quick glance, and away–and back,
    I have long since uttered your name
    but now
    I elude your presence.
    I stop
    to think about you, and my mind
    at once
    like a minnow darts away,
    into the shadows, into gleams that fret
    unceasing over
    the river's purling and passing.
    Not for one second
    will my self hold still, but wanders
    everywhere it can turn. Not you,
    it is I am absent.
    You are the stream, the fish, the light,
    the pulsing shadow,
    you the unchanging presence, in whom all
    moves and changes.
    How can I focus my flickering, perceive
    at the fountain's heart
    the sapphire I know is there?

    Variation on a Theme by Rilke
    by Denise Levertov

    A certain day became a presence to me;
    there it was, confronting me--a sky, air, light:
    a being. And before it started to descend
    from the height of noon, it leaned over
    and struck my shoulder as if with
    the flat of a sword, granting me
    honor and a task. The day's blow
    rang out, metallic--or it was I, a bell awakened,
    and what I heard was my whole self
    saying and singing what it knew: I can.

    The Ache of Marriage
    by Denise Levertov

    The ache of marriage:

    thigh and tongue, beloved,
    are heavy with it,
    it throbs in the teeth

    We look for communion
    and are turned away, beloved,
    each and each

    It is leviathan and we
    in its belly
    looking for joy, some joy
    not to be known outside it

    two by two in the ark of
    the ache of it.

    In Blackwater Woods - by Mary Oliver

    Look, the trees
    are turning
    their own bodies
    into pillars

    of light,
    are giving off the rich
    fragrance of cinnamon
    and fulfillment,

    the long tapers
    of cattails
    are bursting and floating away over
    the blue shoulders

    of the ponds,
    and every pond,
    no matter what its
    name is, is

    nameless now.
    Every year
    I have ever learned

    in my lifetime
    leads back to this: the fires
    and the black river of loss
    whose other side

    is salvation,
    whose meaning
    none of us will ever know.
    To live in this world

    you must be able
    to do three things:
    to love what is mortal;
    to hold it

    against your bones knowing
    your own life depends on it;
    and, when the time comes to let it go,
    to let it go.

    [This Message was Edited on 02/28/2010]
  4. LittleBluestem

    LittleBluestem New Member

    The Runaway is one of my favorites.

    Here is another classic Robert Frost that horse lovers would like.

    Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening
    by Robert Frost

    Whose woods these are I think I know.
    His house is in the village, though;
    He will not see me stopping here
    To watch his woods fill up with snow.

    My little horse must think it queer
    To stop without a farmhouse near
    Between the woods and frozen lake
    The darkest evening of the year.

    He gives his harness bells a shake
    To ask if there is some mistake.
    The only other sound's the sweep
    Of easy wind and downy flake.

    The woods are lovely, dark and deep,
    But I have promises to keep,
    And miles to go before I sleep,
    And miles to go before I sleep.
  5. Shannonsparkles

    Shannonsparkles New Member

    A Shropshire Lad
    by A.E. Housman

    Loveliest of trees, the cherry now
    Is hung with bloom along the bough,
    And stands about the woodland ride
    Wearing white for Eastertide.

    Now, of my threescore years and ten,
    Twenty will not come again,
    And take from seventy springs a score,
    It only leaves me fifty more.

    And since to look at things in bloom
    Fifty springs are little room,
    About the woodlands I will go
    To see the cherry hung with snow.
  6. Shannonsparkles

    Shannonsparkles New Member

    Letty's Globe
    by Charles Turner

    When Letty had scarce pass'd her third glad year,
    And her young, artless words began to flow,
    One day we gave the child a colour'd sphere
    Of the wide earth, that she might mark and know,
    By tint and outline, all its sea and land.
    She patted all the world; old empires peep'd
    Between her baby fingers; her soft hand
    Was welcome at all frontiers. How she leap'd,
    And laugh'd, and prattled in her world-wide bliss;
    But when we turned her sweet unlearned eye
    On our own isle, she raised a joyous cry,
    "Oh! yes, I see it, Letty's home is there!"
    And, while she hid all England with a kiss,
    Bright over Europe fell her golden hair.
  7. windblade

    windblade Active Member

    How joyful to see you here! The Houseman is wonderful, and Charles Turner gave me a new poet to know.

    I have another wonderful one on horses, and to pick up your theme, on maps! This thread gives me so much joy.
  8. windblade

    windblade Active Member

    that story, Hangin, Created ...by God. A lovely vignette of you and your son!
    [This Message was Edited on 05/31/2006]
  9. Shannonsparkles

    Shannonsparkles New Member

    I liked The Runaway. It says that a child's fears are as weighty as anyone's, and that we all need to be protected. It was lovely the way Robert Frost closed the poem by expressing compassion for the little colt and wanting to comfot him. Gets better with every reading.

    The poem thread is a wonderful place to be. Since somebody here wrote that music increases dopamine levels, and since poetry is music solidified, I'm sure that this all does something good for us. :)
    ((love)) Shannon
    [This Message was Edited on 06/01/2006]
  10. Shannonsparkles

    Shannonsparkles New Member

    from: The Rime of the Ancient Mariner
    by Samuel Taylor Coleredge

    Farewell, farewell ! but this I tell
    To thee, thou Wedding-Guest !
    He prayeth well, who loveth well
    Both man and bird and beast.

    He prayeth best, who loveth best
    All things both great and small ;
    For the dear God who loveth us,
    He made and loveth all.
  11. windblade

    windblade Active Member

    Two new contributions coming up today! One is another poem about horses - one of my favorite poems in the whole world. I'm interested to see what you think of it. (Pablo Neruda's 'Horses')

    The second one I fell in love with when I was young. I love saying it out-loud for the beauty of the sounds.
    (The Lady of Shalott)
    I saw something new in The Runaway after I read what you wrote. A different slant.

    I love and need to read poems many, many times to receive as much as I can from them.
    [This Message was Edited on 06/01/2006]
  12. windblade

    windblade Active Member

    You did it!!! Thank you dear friend. You must have caught it very soon after I finished typing. Whewwwww - I wanted the horses to be first.
  13. windblade

    windblade Active Member

    I'm so glad that you feel that this poetry thread is a wonderful place to be. Hangin and I started it just for our own pleasure, and joy in sharing and discovering new poems. We have another on the worship board.

    I love the phrase " poetry is music solidified". I know this morning spending time typing out my beloved Neruda's 'Horses' gave me great satisfaction, and turned pain to happiness.

    Here is a wonderful quote by another great poet: Rilke

    "Walk your walk of lament on a path of praise".
  14. kholmes

    kholmes New Member

    Here's one of my favorites:

    Sonnet 130 William Shakespeare

    My mistress' eyes are nothing like the sun;
    Coral is far more red than her lips red;
    If snow be white, why then her breasts are dun;
    If hairs be wires, black wires grow on her head.

    I have seen roses damask'd, red and white,
    But no such roses see I in her cheeks;
    And in some perfumes is there more delight
    Than in the breath that from my mistress reeks.

    I love to hear her speak, yet well I know
    That music hath a far more pleasing sound;
    I grant I never saw a goddess go;
    My mistress, when she walks, treads on the ground;

    And yet, by heaven, I think my love as rare
    As any she belied with false compare.

    I love how Shakespeare scraps all of the phony Rennaissance love conceits--lines used by lovers trying to get women into bed, and comparisons like "your eyes are like the sun," or "your lips are like coral," or "your cheeks are like roses." Despite all of her physical imperfections--black wires growing on her head, bad breath, ungraceful walking--the speaker loves his mistress dearly, and thinks her as rare and beautiful as any woman that other poets or lovers lie about "with false compare."


    [This Message was Edited on 06/01/2006]
  15. LittleBluestem

    LittleBluestem New Member

    I like that about poetry being music solidified, too. Here is a poem that sort of relates.

    The Aim was Song
    by Robert Frost

    Before man came to blow it right
    The wind once blew itself untaught,
    And did its loudest day and night
    In any rough place where it caught.

    Man came to tell it what was wrong:
    I hadn't found the place to blow;
    It blew too hard--the aim was song.
    And listen--how it ought to go!

    He took a little in his mouth,
    And held it long enough for north
    To be converted into south,
    And then by measure blew it forth.

    By measure. It was word and note,
    The wind the wind had meant to be--
    A little through the lips and throat.
    The aim was song--the wind could see.
  16. windblade

    windblade Active Member

    "The imagination loves reverie, the daydreaming capacity of the mind set in motion by words, by images."

    - Edward Hirsch
  17. Shannonsparkles

    Shannonsparkles New Member

    ... is what I think when I watch TV, being too sick to go out and be with real people. Thanks for posting The Lady of Shallot. Definately have a new perspective on it reading it lately.

    Now, if I had been her, I would have sent Lancelot an e-mail or taken out an ad in the personals. ;) "Available young businesswoman, owns her own castle, has a pretty face..." lol

    Kholmes, thanks for the sonnet. I'd been looking for that one, but I couldn't remember how it goes. It is a good change from the usual.
    (( )) Shannon
    [This Message was Edited on 06/02/2006]
  18. Shannonsparkles

    Shannonsparkles New Member

    Requiem of Beauty
    by Nancy Huffines

    When you look at me remember,
    I didn't always look this way.
    I was young, sweet and innocent,
    playful and somewhat gay.
    Once delicate features, withered by the years.
    Flowing hair replaced with chards, one of life's jokes.
    A remembrance of "life is hard".
    And the scars my body keeps,
    too painful to remember.
    Life puts them on so sleek,
    so when we get old they'll be there to see.
    One can only imagine the messages that they keep.
  19. Shannonsparkles

    Shannonsparkles New Member

    Paper Stars
    by T. Hayes

    he remembers
    silver paper stars
    on the ceiling above his bed

    but no one else does
    the ones who would
    are gone
    he knows
    she put the stars there
    just for him
    but now
    she is gone
    and only he remembers

    the sandbox
    by the back porch
    where he could dig and play
    hour upon hour
    he remembers

    and how he cried
    to discover the birds
    devouring his modeling dough
    carelessly abandoned
    on the table
    in the yard

    he remembers
    how she laughed
    and made him more

    but now
    she is gone
    and only he remembers
    only he remembers
    only he
    he only
    paper stars
  20. Shannonsparkles

    Shannonsparkles New Member

    My Soul Is Free
    by Grete Schmahl-Wolf

    I am lying here in sick bay
    On wooden boards to hold me.
    My body's weak and skeletal
    But my soul is free.

    My limbs are weak from lying
    In a body racked with needs.
    Theresienstadt is where I am living
    But my soul is free.

    What I once was is forgotton.
    I do not complain of what the took from me;
    For I am reaching for the heavens
    And my soul is free.

    Grete died in the concentration camp Theresienstadt two days after writing this poem.

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