Friday, September 30, 2011

A Hymn In Honour Of Beauty



Ah whither, Love, wilt thou now carry me?
What wontless fury dost thou now inspire
Into my feeble breast, too full of thee?
Whilst seeking to aslake thy raging fire,
Thou in me kindlest much more great desire,
And up aloft above my strength dost raise
The wondrous matter of my fire to praise.

That as I erst in praise of thine own name,
So now in honour of thy mother dear,
An honourable hymn I eke should frame,
And with the brightness of her beauty clear,
The ravish'd hearts of gazeful men might rear
To admiration of that heavenly light,
From whence proceeds such soul-enchanting might.

Thereto do thou, great goddess, queen of beauty,
Mother of love, and of all world's delight,
Without whose sovereign grace and kindly duty
Nothing on earth seems fair to fleshly sight,
Do thou vouchsafe with thy love-kindling light
T' illuminate my dim and dulled eyne,
And beautify this sacred hymn of thine:

That both to thee, to whom I mean it most,
And eke to her, whose fair immortal beam
Hath darted fire into my feeble ghost,
That now it wasted is with woes extreme,
It may so please, that she at length will stream
Some dew of grace into my withered heart,
After long sorrow and consuming smart.

WHAT time this world's great Workmaster did cast
To make all things such as we now behold,
It seems that he before his eyes had plac'd
A goodly pattern, to whose perfect mould
He fashion'd them as comely as he could;
That now so fair and seemly they appear,
As nought may be amended anywhere.

That wondrous pattern, wheresoe'er it be,
Whether in earth laid up in secret store,
Or else in heaven, that no man may it see
With sinful eyes, for fear it to deflore,
Is perfect Beauty, which all men adore;
Whose face and feature doth so much excel
All mortal sense, that none the same may tell.

Thereof as every earthly thing partakes
Or more or less, by influence divine,
So it more fair accordingly it makes,
And the gross matter of this earthly mine,
Which clotheth it, thereafter doth refine,
Doing away the dross which dims the light
Of that fair beam which therein is empight.

For, through infusion of celestial power,
The duller earth it quick'neth with delight,
And lifeful spirits privily doth pour
Through all the parts, that to the looker's sight
They seem to please. That is thy sovereign might,
O Cyprian queen, which flowing from the beam
Of thy bright star, thou into them dost stream.

That is the thing which giveth pleasant grace
To all things fair, that kindleth lively fire,
Light of thy lamp, which, shining in the face,
Thence to the soul darts amorous desire,
And robs the hearts of those which it admire;
Therewith thou pointest thy son's poison'd arrow,
That wounds the life, and wastes the inmost marrow.

How vainly then do idle wits invent,
That beauty is nought else but mixture made
Of colours fair, and goodly temp'rament
Of pure complexions, that shall quickly fade
And pass away, like to a summer's shade;
Or that it is but comely composition
Of parts well measur'd, with meet disposition.

Hath white and red in it such wondrous power,
That it can pierce through th' eyes unto the heart,
And therein stir such rage and restless stour,
As nought but death can stint his dolour's smart?
Or can proportion of the outward part
Move such affection in the inward mind,
That it can rob both sense and reason blind?

Why do not then the blossoms of the field,
Which are array'd with much more orient hue,
And to the sense most dainty odours yield,
Work like impression in the looker's view?
Or why do not fair pictures like power shew,
In which oft-times we nature see of art
Excell'd, in perfect limning every part?

But ah, believe me, there is more than so,
That works such wonders in the minds of men;
I, that have often prov'd, too well it know,
And whoso list the like assays to ken,
Shall find by trial, and confess it then,
That beauty is not, as fond men misdeem,
An outward shew of things, that only seem.

For that same goodly hue of white and red,
With which the cheeks are sprinkled, shall decay,
And those sweet rosy leaves, so fairly spread
Upon the lips, shall fade and fall away
To that they were, even to corrupted clay;
That golden wire, those sparkling stars so bright,
Shall turn to dust; and lose their goodly light.

But that fair lamp, from whose celestial ray
That light proceeds, which kindleth lovers' fire,
Shall never be extinguish'd nor decay;
But when the vital spirits do expire,
Unto her native planet shall retire;
For it is heavenly born and cannot die,
Being a parcel of the purest sky.

For when the soul, the which derived was,
At first, out of that great immortal Spright,
By whom all live to love, whilom did pass
Down from the top of purest heaven's height
To be embodied here, it then took light
And lively spirits from that fairest star,
Which lights the world forth from his fiery car.

Which power retaining still or more or less,
When she in fleshly seed is eft enraced,
Through every part she doth the same impress,
According as the heavens have her graced,
And frames her house, in which she will be placed,
Fit for herself, adorning it with spoil
Of th' heavenly riches which she robb'd erewhile.

Thereof it comes that these fair souls, which have
The most resemblance of that heavenly light,
Frame to themselves most beautiful and brave
Their fleshly bower, most fit for their delight,
And the gross matter by a sovereign might
Tempers so trim, that it may well be seen
A palace fit for such a virgin queen.

So every spirit, as it is most pure,
And hath in it the more of heavenly light,
So it the fairer body doth procure
To habit in, and it more fairly dight
With cheerful grace and amiable sight.
For of the soul the body form doth take:
For soul is form, and doth the body make.

Therefore wherever that thou dost behold
A comely corpse, with beauty fair endued,
Know this for certain, that the same doth hold
A beauteous soul, with fair conditions thewed,
Fit to receive the seed of virtue strewed.
For all that fair is, is by nature good;
That is a sign to know the gentle blood.

Yet oft it falls that many a gentle mind
Dwells in deformed tabernacle drown'd,
Either by chance, against the course of kind,
Or through unaptness in the substance found,
Which it assumed of some stubborn ground,
That will not yield unto her form's direction,
But is deform'd with some foul imperfection.

And oft it falls, (ay me, the more to rue)
That goodly beauty, albe heavenly born,
Is foul abus'd, and that celestial hue,
Which doth the world with her delight adorn,
Made but the bait of sin, and sinners' scorn,
Whilst every one doth seek and sue to have it,
But every one doth seek but to deprave it.

Yet nathëmore is that fair beauty's blame,
But theirs that do abuse it unto ill:
Nothing so good, but that through guilty shame
May be corrupt, and wrested unto will:
Natheless the soul is fair and beauteous still,
However flesh{"e}s fault it filthy make;
For things immortal no corruption take.

But ye fair dames, the world's dear ornaments
And lively images of heaven's light,
Let not your beams with such disparagements
Be dimm'd, and your bright glory dark'ned quite;
But mindful still of your first country's sight,
Do still preserve your first informed grace,
Whose shadow yet shines in your beauteous face.

Loathe that foul blot, that hellish firebrand,
Disloyal lust, fair beauty's foulest blame,
That base affections, which your ears would bland,
Commend to you by love's abused name,
But is indeed the bondslave of defame;
Which will the garland of your glory mar,
And quench the light of your bright shining star.

But gentle Love, that loyal is and true,
Will more illumine your resplendent ray,
And add more brightness to your goodly hue,
From light of his pure fire; which, by like way
Kindled of yours, your likeness doth display;
Like as two mirrors, by oppos'd reflection,
Do both express the face's first impression.

Therefore, to make your beauty more appear,
It you behoves to love, and forth to lay
That heavenly riches which in you ye bear,
That men the more admire their fountain may;
For else what booteth that celestial ray,
If it in darkness be enshrined ever,
That it of loving eyes be viewed never?

But, in your choice of loves, this well advise,
That likest to yourselves ye them select,
The which your forms' first source may sympathize,
And with like beauty's parts be inly deckt;
For, if you loosely love without respect,
It is no love, but a discordant war,
Whose unlike parts amongst themselves do jar.

For love is a celestial harmony
Of likely hearts compos'd of stars' concent,
Which join together in sweet sympathy,
To work each other's joy and true content,
Which they have harbour'd since their first descent
Out of their heavenly bowers, where they did see
And know each other here belov'd to be.

Then wrong it were that any other twain
Should in love's gentle band combined be
But those whom Heaven did at first ordain,
And made out of one mould the more t' agree;
For all that like the beauty which they see,
Straight do not love; for love is not so light
As straight to burn at first beholder's sight.

But they, which love indeed, look otherwise,
With pure regard and spotless true intent,
Drawing out of the object of their eyes
A more refined form, which they present
Unto their mind, void of all blemishment;
Which it reducing to her first perfection,
Beholdeth free from flesh's frail infection.

And then conforming it unto the light,
Which in itself it hath remaining still,
Of that first Sun, yet sparkling in his sight,
Thereof he fashions in his higher skill
An heavenly beauty to his fancy's will;
And it embracing in his mind entire,
The mirror of his own thought doth admire.

Which seeing now so inly fair to be,
As outward it appeareth to the eye,
And with his spirit's proportion to agree,
He thereon fixeth all his fantasy,
And fully setteth his felicity;
Counting it fairer than it is indeed,
And yet indeed her fairness doth exceed.

For lovers' eyes more sharply sighted be
Than other men's, and in dear love's delight
See more than any other eyes can see,
Through mutual receipt of beam{"e}s bright,
Which carry privy message to the spright,
And to their eyes that inmost fair display,
As plain as light discovers dawning day.

Therein they see, through amorous eye-glances,
Armies of loves still flying to and fro,
Which dart at them their little fiery lances;
Whom having wounded, back again they go,
Carrying compassion to their lovely foe;
Who, seeing her fair eyes' so sharp effect,
Cures all their sorrows with one sweet aspect.

In which how many wonders do they rede
To their conceit, that others never see,
Now of her smiles, with which their souls they feed,
Like gods with nectar in their banquets free;
Now of her looks, which like to cordials be;
But when her words' embássade forth she sends,
Lord, how sweet music that unto them lends.

Sometimes upon her forehead they behold
A thousand graces masking in delight;
Sometimes within her eyelids they unfold
Ten thousand sweet belgards, which to their sight
Do seem like twinkling stars in frosty night;
But on her lips, like rosy buds in May,
So many millions of chaste pleasures play.

All those, O Cytherea, and thousands more
Thy handmaids be, which do on thee attend,
To deck thy beauty with their dainties' store,
That may it more to mortal eyes commend,
And make it more admir'd of foe and friend:
That in men's hearts thou may'st thy throne install,
And spread thy lovely kingdom over all.

Then Iö, triumph! O great Beauty's Queen,
Advance the banner of thy conquest high,
That all this world, the which thy vassals bene,
May draw to thee, and with due fealty
Adore the power of thy great majesty,
Singing this hymn in honour of thy name,
Compil'd by me, which thy poor liegeman am.

In lieu whereof grant, O great sovereign,
That she whose conquering beauty doth captive
My trembling heart in her eternal chain,
One drop of grace at length will to me give,
That I her bounden thrall by her may live,
And this same life, which first fro me she reaved,
May owe to her, of whom I it received.

And you, fair Venus' darling, my dear dread,
Fresh flower of grace, great goddess of my life,
When your fair eyes these fearful lines shall read,
Deign to let fall one drop of due relief,
That may recure my heart's long pining grief,
And shew what wondrous power your beauty hath,
That can restore a damned wight from death.

Edmund Spenser

Natalia’s Resurrection: Sonnet XVII



Nor yet in vain. For to him through the rout
Behold, 'mid herald whispers of her name
And laughing eyes and welcome hands held out,
Natalia's self behind her husband came,
Her face arrayed in smiles, as who should say
She held a secret string of happiness
Joined to her heart grief could not take away.
And Adrian gazed at her in rapturous bliss,
Knowing his love had triumphed o'er the grave
And she at last was his, a heritage
For ever for his heart to hold and have,
In spite of change and death's untimely rage
And the long tempest of forgotten tears,
The pain, the anger and the grief of years.

Wilfrid Scawen Blunt

Best Gains—must have the Losses' Test



Best Gains—must have the Losses' Test—
To constitute them—Gains—


Emily Dickinson


Not Aladdin magian
Ever such a work began;
Not the wizard of the Dee
Ever such a dream could see;
Not St. John, in Patmos' Isle,
In the passion of his toil,
When he saw the churches seven,
Golden aisl'd, built up in heaven,
Gaz'd at such a rugged wonder.
As I stood its roofing under
Lo! I saw one sleeping there,
On the marble cold and bare.
While the surges wash'd his feet,
And his garments white did beat.
Drench'd about the sombre rocks,
On his neck his well-grown locks,
Lifted dry above the main,
Were upon the curl again.
'What is this? and what art thou?'
Whisper'd I, and touch'd his brow;
'What art thou? and what is this?'
Whisper'd I, and strove to kiss
The spirit's hand, to wake his eyes;
Up he started in a trice:
'I am Lycidas,' said he,
'Fam'd in funeral minstrely!
This was architectur'd thus
By the great Oceanus!--
Here his mighty waters play
Hollow organs all the day;
Here by turns his dolphins all,
Finny palmers great and small,
Come to pay devotion due--
Each a mouth of pearls must strew.
Many a mortal of these days,
Dares to pass our sacred ways,
Dares to touch audaciously
This Cathedral of the Sea!
I have been the pontiff-priest
Where the waters never rest,
Where a fledgy sea-bird choir
Soars for ever; holy fire
I have hid from mortal man;
Proteus is my Sacristan.
But the dulled eye of mortal
Hath pass'd beyond the rocky portal;
So for ever will I leave
Such a taint, and soon unweave
All the magic of the place.'
* * * * * *
So saying, with a Spirit's glance
He dived!



John Keats

An Old Man To His Sleeping Young Bride



As when the old moon lighted by the tender
And radiant crescent of the new is seen,
And for a moment's space suggests the splendor
Of what in its full prime it once has been,
So on my waning years you cast the glory
Of youth and pleasure, for a little hour;
And life again seems like an unread story,
And joy and hope both stir me with their power.

Can blooming June be fond of bleak December?
I dare not wait to hear my heart reply.
I will forget the question-and remember
Alone the priceless feast spread for mine eye,
That radiant hair that flows across the pillows,
Like shimmering sunbeams over drifts of snow;
Those heaving breasts, like undulating billows,
Whose dangers or delights but Love can know,

That crimson mouth from which sly Cupid borrowed
The pattern for his bow, nor asked consent;
That smooth, unruffled brow which has not sorrowed-
All these are mine; should I not be content?
Yet are these treasures mine, or only lent me?
And, who shall claim them when I pass away?
Oh, jealous Fate, to torture and torment me
With thoughts like these in my too fleeting day!

For while I gained the prize which all were seeking,
And won you with the ardor of my quest,
The bitter truth I know without your speaking-
You only let me love you at the best.
E'en while I lean and count my riches over,
And view with gloating eyes your priceless charms,
I know somewhere there dwells the unnamed lover
Who yet shall clasp you, willing, in his arms.

And while my hands stray through your clustering tresses,
And while my lips are pressed upon your own,
This unseen lover waits for such caresses
As my poor hungering clay has never known,
And when some day, between you and your duty
A green grave lies, his love shall make you glad,
And you shall crown him with your splendid beauty-
Ah, God! ah, God! 'tis this way men go mad!

Ella Wheeler Wilcox

To Ianthe



YOU smil’d, you spoke, and I believ’d,
By every word and smile deceiv’d.
Another man would hope no more;
Nor hope I what I hop’d before:
But let not this last wish be vain;
Deceive, deceive me once again!

Walter Savage Landor

Dilemma



If I were mild, and I were sweet,
And laid my heart before your feet,
And took my dearest thoughts to you,
And hailed your easy lies as true;
Were I to murmur "Yes," and then
"How true, my dear," and "Yes," again,
And wear my eyes discreetly down,
And tremble whitely at your frown,
And keep my words unquestioning
My love, you'd run like anything!

Should I be frail, and I be mad,
And share my heart with every lad,
But beat my head against the floor
What times you wandered past my door;
Were I to doubt, and I to sneer,
And shriek "Farewell!" and still be here,
And break your joy, and quench your trust-
I should not see you for the dust!

Dorothy Parker

Book Of Suleika - Hatem 02



O, SAY, 'neath what celestial sign

The day doth lie,
When ne'er again this heart of mine

Away will fly?
And e'en though fled (what thought divine!)

Would near me lie?--
On the soft couch, on whose sweet shrine

My heart near hers will lie!

Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

from Ode in May



What is so sweet and dear
...As a prosperous morn in May,
...The confident prime of the day,
And the dauntless youth of the year,
When nothing that asks for bliss,
...Asking aright, is denied,
And half of the world a bridegroom is,
And half of the world a bride?

Sir William Watson

Illusion

Reality is merely an illusion, albeit a very persistent one.

Albert Einstein

Eccentricity

Eccentricity is not, as dull people would have us believe, a form of madness. It is often a kind of innocent pride, and the man of genius and the aristocrat are frequently regarded as eccentrics because genius and aristocrat are entirely unafraid of and uninfluenced by the opinions and vagaries of the crowd.

Edith Sitwell

Gardens and flowers

Gardens and flowers have a way of bringing people together, drawing them from their homes.

Clare Ansberry

I am

The words 'I am...' are potent words; be careful what you hitch them to. The thing you're claiming has a way of reaching back and claiming you.

A. L. Kitselman

Habit

Habit is a shackle for the free.

Bierce, Ambrose

Contemplation

The act of contemplation creates the thing contemplated.

Isaac D'Israeli

In vino veritas

Hide our ignorance as we will, an evening of wine will reveal it.

Heraclitus

March on

"March on. Do not tarry. To go forward is to move toward perfection. March on, and fear not the thorns, or the sharp stones on life's path."

Kahlil Gibran

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Book Of Suleika - Hatem 01



NOT occasion makes the thief;

She's the greatest of the whole;
For Love's relics, to my grief,

From my aching heart she stole.

She hath given it to thee,--

All the joy my life had known,
So that, in my poverty,

Life I seek from thee alone.

Yet compassion greets me straight

In the lustre of thine eye,
And I bless my newborn fate,

As within thine arms I lie.

Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

De Profundis



Oh, is it, then, Utopian
To hope that I may meet a man
Who'll not relate, in accents suave,
The tales of girls he used to have?

Dorothy Parker

To Age



Welcome, old friend! These many years
Have we lived door by door;
The fates have laid aside their shears
Perhaps for some few more.

I was indocile at an age
When better boys were taught,
But thou at length hast made me sage,
If I am sage in aught.

Little I know from other men,
Too little they know from me,
But thou hast pointed well the pen
That writes these lines to thee.

Thanks for expelling Fear and Hope,
One vile, the other vain;
One's scourge, the other's telescope,
I shall not see again.

Rather what lies before my feet
My notice shall engage--
He who hath braved Youth's dizzy heat
Dreads not the frost of Age.

Walter Savage Landor

An Inspiration



However the battle is ended,
Though proudly the victor comes
With fluttering flags and prancing nags
And echoing roll of drums.
Still truth proclaims this motto,
In letters of living light, -
No Question is ever settled,
Until it is settled right.

Though the heel of the strong oppressor
May grind the weak to dust,
And the voices of fame with one acclaim
May call him great and just,
Let those who applaud take warning,
And keep this motto in sight, -
No question is ever settled
Until it is settled right.

Let those who have failed take courage;
Tho' the enemy seems to have won,
Tho' his ranks are strong, if he be in the wrong
The battle is not yet done;
For, as sure as the morning follows
The darkest hour of the night,
No question is ever settled
Until it is settled right.

O man bowed down with labor!
O woman, young, yet old!
O heart oppressed in the toiler's breast
And crushed by the power of gold!
Keep on with your weary battle
Against triumphant might;
No question is ever settled
Until it is settled right.

Ella Wheeler Wilcox

Specimen Of An Induction To A Poem



Lo! I must tell a tale of chivalry;
For large white plumes are dancing in mine eye.
Not like the formal crest of latter days:
But bending in a thousand graceful ways;
So graceful, that it seems no mortal hand,
Or e’en the touch of Archimago’s wand,
Could charm them into such an attitude.
We must think rather, that in playful mood,
Some mountain breeze had turned its chief delight,
To show this wonder of its gentle might.
Lo! I must tell a tale of chivalry;
For while I muse, the lance points slantingly
Athwart the morning air: some lady sweet,
Who cannot feel for cold her tender feet,
From the worn top of some old battlement
Hails it with tears, her stout defender sent:
And from her own pure self no joy dissembling,
Wraps round her ample robe with happy trembling.
Sometimes, when the good Knight his rest would take,
It is reflected, clearly, in a lake,
With the young ashen boughs, ’gainst which it rests,
And th’ half seen mossiness of linnets’ nests.

Ah! shall I ever tell its cruelty,
When the fire flashes from a warrior’s eye,
And his tremendous hand is grasping it,
And his dark brow for very wrath is knit?
Or when his spirit, with more calm intent,
Leaps to the honors of a tournament,
And makes the gazers round about the ring
Stare at the grandeur of the ballancing?
No, no! this is far off:—then how shall I
Revive the dying tones of minstrelsy,
Which linger yet about lone gothic arches,
In dark green ivy, and among wild larches?
How sing the splendour of the revelries,
When but[t]s of wine are drunk off to the lees?
And that bright lance, against the fretted wall,
Beneath the shade of stately banneral,
Is slung with shining cuirass, sword, and shield?
Where ye may see a spur in bloody field.
Light-footed damsels move with gentle paces
Round the wide hall, and show their happy faces;
Or stand in courtly talk by fives and sevens:
Like those fair stars that twinkle in the heavens.
Yet must I tell a tale of chivalry:
Or wherefore comes that knight so proudly by?
Wherefore more proudly does the gentle knight,
Rein in the swelling of his ample might?

Spenser! thy brows are arched, open, kind,
And come like a clear sun-rise to my mind;
And always does my heart with pleasure dance,
When I think on thy noble countenance:
Where never yet was ought more earthly seen
Than the pure freshness of thy laurels green.
Therefore, great bard, I not so fearfully
Call on thy gentle spirit to hover nigh
My daring steps: or if thy tender care,
Thus startled unaware,
Be jealous that the foot of other wight
Should madly follow that bright path of light
Trac’d by thy lov’d Libertas; he will speak,
And tell thee that my prayer is very meek;
That I will follow with due reverence,
And start with awe at mine own strange pretence.
Him thou wilt hear; so I will rest in hope
To see wide plains, fair trees and lawny slope:
The morn, the eve, the light, the shade, the flowers;
Clear streams, smooth lakes, and overlooking towers.

John Keats

Besides this May



Besides this May
We know
There is Another—
How fair
Our Speculations of the Foreigner!

Some know Him whom We knew—
Sweet Wonder—
A Nature be
Where Saints, and our plain going Neighbor
Keep May!

Emily Dickinson

Natalia’s Resurrection: Sonnet XVI



Among the rest ('twas thus his dream went on
While Adrian slept) in more than courteous mood
And smiling welcome, fairer scarce was none,
That noble knight Natalia's husband stood,
A gentle man whom of a truth in life,
Alas for jealous youth and wit too keen!
Adrian loved little though he loved his wife,
But now beheld as the most blest of men,--
Because Natalia was not dead, he thought,
Seeing him thus unconscious of all grief,--
And in that cloudless face where pain was not
Adrian found omen to his soul's relief,
And looked beyond if haply he should see
Her face too following fixed in constancy.

Wilfrid Scawen Blunt

from Awake, my Heart, to be loved



Awake, my heart, to be loved, awake, awake;
The darkness silvers away, the morn doth break,
It leaps in the sky: unrisen lustres slake
The o'ertaken moon. Awake, O heart, awake!

She too that loveth awaketh and hopes for thee;
Her eyes already have sped the shades that flee,
Already they watch the path thy feet shall take:
Awake, O heart, to be loved, awake, awake!

Robert Bridges

Ill wind

'Tis an ill wind that blows no minds.

Malaclypse the Younger

Can I?

Can I ever know you Or you know me?

Sara Teasdale

Garlic

Tomatoes and oregano make it Italian; wine and tarragon make it French. Sour cream makes it Russian; lemon and cinnamon make it Greek. Soy sauce makes it Chinese; garlic makes it good.

Alice May Brock

Best

Only the mediocre are always at their best

Bob Monkhouse

Speak honestly or else be silent

Vain, boastful talk repels acts of kindness and tears the branch of mercy from the trunk of the tree. Speak honestly or else be silent, and then behold grace and delight in it.

Rumi

Suffering

One does not love a place the less for having suffered in it, unless it has been all suffering, nothing but suffering.

Austen, Jane

Oh senseless man

Oh senseless man, who cannot possibly make a worm, and yet will make Gods by dozens.

Montaigne, Michel Eyquem De

When I see your face



When I see your face
I shut my eyes to others.
I am drunk with your presence.
To earn Solomon's seal
I have become supple as wax.
When I see your face
I surrender my will and
become a sigh on your lips.
You were in my hand but I kept reaching out
like a blind man.
I was in your hand but kept asking questions
from those who are ignorant.
I must have been very drunk or naïve
to steal my own gold,
I must have been mad to sneak in
and rob my own jasmine garden.
I've been twisted long enough by your might,
Shams of Tabriz!
But even in my sorrow I am joyous
like the crescent moon
at the beginning of the festival.

Rumi

Rainy day

I do pity unlearned people on a rainy day.

Falkland, Lucius C.

Distant lamps

We see but dimly through the mists and vapors;
Amid these earthly damps
What seem to us but sad, funeral tapers
May be heaven's distant lamps.

Henry W. Longfellow

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

To be the thing



To be the name uttered, but not to have the burden to be
To be the name said, but not heard
To not breathe anymore, to be the thing
To be the thing being breathed
To not be about to die, to be already dead
To not have to disappoint
To not have the burden of being late
Or punctual
To not eat, to not have to eat
To not feel anything
To not be the one whose affect is criticized
To not pick up the fallen over boxes
To be everywhere but the boxes or plates
To not break the plates
To be beyond breaking
To have been broken
To not bear the burden of not being present
To not have to feel the pain of being hurt
To have transferred that pain over
So that hurt is only part of the imagination
And the imagination is everywhere, is every color
To not contain color, to be color
To not make sound, to be sound
To not have language, to echo, to plan language
To be the stream of words
To not be sad for
To not have those to be sad for
To not eat alone
To not fuck those who do not find your corpse attractive
To not fuck
Or stuff
To be ashes and non-placed
Not displaced, but to not be in any place
To enter the ocean on not a whim, but a physical force
Where there is no center
Where there is no safety
There never was
There was never any anger
There was never anything to look at
I never looked at anything
I just went and walked
I tried to love
But love is hopeless
And I have lost all hope, so bleak I am beyond
I am beyond what might be considered low
There is low nor high, space or time, I have
Gone away from that which is uttered
I have not burdened to be spoken of or spoken for
To croak everyday to the livelong bog
I do not speak a thing
I exist
No, no I don't
I never did
And you may have
But I never did
And you may have called out for me
But I was already gone
And I am already there
That which you speak of
I am already spoken for
In a world of light and ashes
They all call my name
They have waited for me
And now I know
I was always
Already there
With them


Dorothea Lasky

Natalia’s Resurrection: Sonnet XV



Anon, ere yet his pleasure was aware
Of other presence with him in that place,
A growing murmur in the jubilant air,
With hum of voices gathering apace,
And laughter interchanged, and tones well known,
And steps approaching him familiar--wise,
And names that seemed an echo of his own,
Broke on his musing. Turning in surprise
He saw around him a gay company,
Faces of kinsmen or of friends as near,
But dead or changed or wed: all now in joy,
Such as they showed him once in days more dear
Ere yet his manhood had been touched with pain,
Stood forth to greet him to their hearts again.

Wilfrid Scawen Blunt

Besides the Autumn poets sing



Besides the Autumn poets sing
A few prosaic days
A little this side of the snow
And that side of the Haze—

A few incisive Mornings—
A few Ascetic Eves—
Gone—Mr. Bryant's "Golden Rod"—
And Mr. Thomson's "sheaves."

Still, is the bustle in the Brook—
Sealed are the spicy valves—
Mesmeric fingers softly touch
The Eyes of many Elves—

Perhaps a squirrel may remain—
My sentiments to share—
Grant me, Oh Lord, a sunny mind—
Thy windy will to bear!

Emily Dickinson

When I Have Fears That I May Cease To Be



When I have fears that I may cease to be
Before my pen has glean'd my teeming brain,
Before high piled books, in charactry,
Hold like rich garners the full-ripen'd grain;
When I behold, upon the night's starr'd face,
Huge cloudy symbols of a high romance,
And think that I may never live to trace
Their shadows, with the magic hand of chance;
And when I feel, fair creature of an hour,
That I shall never look upon thee more,
Never have relish in the faery power
Of unreflecting love; -- then on the shore
Of the wide world I stand alone, and think
Till Love and Fame to nothingness do sink.

John Keats

An Episode



Along a narrow Moorish street
A blue-eyed soldier strode.
(Ah, well-a-day.)
Veiled from her lashes to her feet
She stepped from her abode,
(Ah, lack-a-day.)


Now love may guard a favoured wife
Who leaves the harem door;
(Ah, well-a-day.)
But hungry hearted is her life
When she is one of four.
(Ah, lack-a-day.)


If black eyes glow with sudden fire
And meet warm eyes of blue-
(Ah, well-a-day.)
The old, old story of desire
Repeats itself anew.
(Ah, lack-a-day.)


When bugles blow the soldier flies-
Though bitter tears may fall
(Ah, lack-a-day.)

A Moorish child with blue, blue eyes
Plays in the harem hall.

(Ah, well-a-day.)

Ella Wheeler Wilcox