Poem of the day

Piazza Piece
by John Crowe Ransom (1888-1974)

—I am a gentleman in a dustcoat trying
To make you hear. Your ears are soft and small
And listen to an old man not at all,
They want the young men’s whispering and sighing.
But see the roses on your trellis dying
And hear the spectral singing of the moon;
For I must have my lovely lady soon,
I am a gentleman in a dustcoat trying.

—I am a lady young in beauty waiting
Until my truelove comes, and then we kiss.
But what gray man among the vines is this
Whose words are dry and faint as in a dream?
Back from my trellis, Sir, before I scream!
I am a lady young in beauty waiting.

Views: 76

Poem of the day

A Passer-by
by Robert Bridges (1844-1930)

Whither, O splendid ship, thy white sails crowding,
   Leaning across the bosom of the urgent West,
That fearest nor sea rising, nor sky clouding,
   Whither away, fair rover, and what thy quest?
   Ah! soon, when Winter has all our vales opprest,
When skies are cold and misty, and hail is hurling,
   Wilt thoù glìde on the blue Pacific, or rest
In a summer haven asleep, thy white sails furling.

I there before thee, in the country that well thou knowest,
   Already arrived am inhaling the odorous air:
I watch thee enter unerringly where thou goest,
   And anchor queen of the strange shipping there,
   Thy sails for awnings spread, thy masts bare:
Nor is aught from the foaming reef to the snow-capp’d grandest
   Peak, that is over the feathery palms, more fair
Than thou, so upright, so stately and still thou standest.

And yet, O splendid ship, unhail’d and nameless,
   I know not if, aiming a fancy, I rightly divine
That thou hast a purpose joyful, a courage blameless,
   Thy port assured in a happier land than mine.
   But for all I have given thee, beauty enough is thine,
As thou, aslant with trim tackle and shrouding,
   From the proud nostril curve of a prow’s line
In the offing scatterest foam, thy white sails crowding.

Views: 47

Game of the week

Views: 51

Poem of the day

To Cœlia
by Charles Cotton (1630-1687)

When, Cœlia, must my old day set,
   And my young morning rise
In beams of joy so bright as yet
   Ne’er bless’d a lover’s eyes?
My state is more advanced than when
   I first attempted thee:
I sued to be a servant then,
   But now to be made free.

I’ve served my time faithful and true,
   Expecting to be placed
In happy freedom, as my due,
   To all the joys thou hast:
Ill husbandry in love is such
   A scandal to love’s power,
We ought not to misspend so much
   As one poor short-lived hour.

Yet think not, sweet! I’m weary grown,
   That I pretend such haste;
Since none to surfeit e’er was known
   Before he had a taste:
My infant love could humbly wait
   When, young, it scarce knew how
To plead; but grown to man’s estate,
   He is impatient now.

Views: 38

Poem of the day

La Vie, C’est la Vie
by Jessie Redmon Fauset (1882-1961)

On summer afternoons I sit
Quiescent by you in the park,
And idly watch the sunbeams gild
And tint the ash-trees’ bark.

Or else I watch the squirrels frisk
And chaffer in the grassy lane;
And all the while I mark your voice
Breaking with love and pain.

I know a woman who would give
Her chance of heaven to take my place;
To see the love-light in your eyes,
The love-glow on your face!

And there’s a man whose lightest word
Can set my chilly blood afire;
Fulfilment of his least behest
Defines my life’s desire.

But he will none of me, Nor I
Of you. Nor you of her. ’Tis said
The world is full of jests like these.—
I wish that I were dead.

Views: 40

Poem of the day

When ’Omer Smote ’Is Bloomin’ Lyre
by Rudyard Kipling (1865-1936)
because it’s World Intellectual Property Day

When ’Omer smote ’is bloomin’ lyre
   He’d ’eard men sing by land an’ sea;
An’ what he thought ’e might require,
   ’E went an’ took—the same as me!

The market-girls an’ fishermen,
   The shepherds an’ the sailors, too,
They ’eard old songs turn up again,
   But kep’ it quiet—same as you!

They knew ’e stole; ’e knew they knowed.
   They didn’t tell, nor make a fuss,
But winked at ’Omer down the road,
   An’ ’e winked back—the same as us!

Views: 49

Poem of the day

The Listeners
by Walter De la Mare (1873-1956)

‛Is there anybody there?’ said the Traveller,
   Knocking on the moonlit door;
And his horse in the silence champed the grasses
   Of the forest’s ferny floor:
And a bird flew up out of the turret,
   Above the Traveller’s head
And he smote upon the door again a second time;
   ‛Is there anybody there?’ he said.
But no one descended to the Traveller;
   No head from the leaf-fringed sill
Leaned over and looked into his grey eyes,
   Where he stood perplexed and still.
But only a host of phantom listeners
   That dwelt in the lone house then
Stood listening in the quiet of the moonlight
   To that voice from the world of men:
Stood thronging the faint moonbeams on the dark stair,
   That goes down to the empty hall,
Hearkening in an air stirred and shaken
   By the lonely Traveller’s call.
And he felt in his heart their strangeness,
   Their stillness answering his cry,
While his horse moved, cropping the dark turf,
   ’Neath the starred and leafy sky;
For he suddenly smote on the door, even
   Louder, and lifted his head:-
‛Tell them I came, and no one answered,
   That I kept my word,’ he said.
Never the least stir made the listeners,
   Though every word he spake
Fell echoing through the shadowiness of the still house
   From the one man left awake:
Ay, they heard his foot upon the stirrup,
   And the sound of iron on stone,
And how the silence surged softly backward,
   When the plunging hoofs were gone.

Views: 56

Poem of the day

Die Glockenjungfern
by Carl Spitteler (1845-1924)

Die Glockenjungfern schwingen
Sich hoch vom Turm und singen
Ein Morgenjubellied im Chor.
Kein Engelmund tönt reiner,
Je ferner, desto feiner,
Und niemals fehlt ihr kluges Ohr.

Verknüpft die Schwesternhände
Zur Kette, ohne Ende,
Blüht durch das Blau der farbige Kranz.
Auf Schlüsselblumenmatten
Segelt ihr Wolkenschatten
Rainauf, rainab im flüchtigen Tanz.

Frühling und Lerchenlieder —
Sie jauchzen alles nieder,
Siegreich behauptend ihren Ton.
Die Sonne horcht von oben,
Das Echo möchts erproben,
Versuchts und wiederholt es schon.

Der Wanderer im Staube
Erhebt das heiße Auge,
Lächelt und hemmt den müden Schritt.
Doch längs dem Weg die Wellen,
Die durch das Bächlein schnellen,
Laufen in flinken Sprüngen mit.

Da mahnt vom Turm ein Zeichen
Ein plötzliches Erbleichen,
Und alles heimwärts stürzt und drängt.
O weh! der Jungfern kleinste,
Die Liebliche, die Feinste
Ist von dem Reigen abgesprengt.

Sie huscht auf leisen Sohlen,
Die Schwestern einzuholen,
Den Finger ängstlich an dem Mund.
Jetzt langt sie an mit Zagen —
Ein Taubenflügelschlagen —
Schlüpft ein uns stille wird im Rund.

Horch! welch Posaunenschweigen!
Die Lüfte kreisen, steigen
Und lauschen nach dem Turm vereint,
Ob irgendwo ein Röckchen,
Ein Zipfel oder Söckchen
Der Glockenjungfern noch erscheint.


Views: 41

Poem of the day

by William Shakespeare (1564-1616)
From Love’s Labour’s Lost

When daisies pied and violets blue,
⁠   And lady-smocks all silver-white,
And cuckoo-buds of yellow hue
⁠   Do paint the meadows with delight,
The cuckoo then on every tree
Mocks married men; for thus sings he,
⁠            Cuckoo;
Cuckoo, cuckoo: O word of fear,
Unpleasing to a married ear!

When shepherds pipe on oaten straws
⁠   And merry larks are ploughmen’s clocks,
When turtles tread, and rooks, and daws,
⁠   And maidens bleach their summer smocks,
The cuckoo then on every tree
Mocks married men; for thus sings he,
⁠            Cuckoo;
Cuckoo, cuckoo: O word of fear,
Unpleasing to a married ear!

Views: 93