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 Post Post subject: Re: Favourite poems
Posted: Tue May 07, 2013 8:52 pm 
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I never really liked poetry till I read the Raven by Edgar Allen Poe. I am still not a big fan of poetry (I prefer fiction), but college helped me appreciate it more than I used to. Some I discovered:

The Second Coming by William Butler Yeats:

Turning and turning in the widening gyre
The falcon cannot hear the falconer;
Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold;
Mere anarchy is loosed upon the world,
The blood-dimmed tide is loosed, and everywhere
The ceremony of innocence is drowned;
The best lack all conviction, while the worst
Are full of passionate intensity.

Surely some revelation is at hand;
Surely the Second Coming is at hand.
The Second Coming! Hardly are those words out
When a vast image out of Spiritus Mundi
Troubles my sight: a waste of desert sand;
A shape with lion body and the head of a man,
A gaze blank and pitiless as the sun,
Is moving its slow thighs, while all about it
Wind shadows of the indignant desert birds.

The darkness drops again but now I know
That twenty centuries of stony sleep
Were vexed to nightmare by a rocking cradle,
And what rough beast, its hour come round at last,
Slouches towards Bethlehem to be born?


Gerard Manley Hopkins:

Spring and Fall

Margaret, are you grieving
Over Goldengrove unleaving?
Leaves, like the things of man, you
With your fresh thoughts care for, can you?
Ah! as the heart grows older
It will come to such sights colder
By and by, nor spare a sigh
Though worlds of wanwood leafmeal lie;
And yet you wíll weep and know why.
Now no matter, child, the name:
Sorrow's springs are the same.
Nor mouth had, no nor mind, expressed
What héart héard of, ghóst guéssed:
It is the blight man was born for,
It is Margaret you mourn for.

The Windhover

I caught this morning morning’s minion, kingdom of daylight’s dauphin, dapple-dawn-drawn Falcon, in his riding
Of the rolling level underneath him steady air, and striding
High there, how he rung upon the rein of a wimpling wing
In his ecstasy! then off, off forth on swing,
As a skate’s heel sweeps smooth on a bow-bend: the hurl and gliding
Rebuffed the big wind. My heart in hiding
Stirred for a bird,—the achieve of; the mastery of the thing!

Brute beauty and valour and act, oh, air, pride, plume, here
Buckle! AND the fire that breaks from thee then, a billion
Times told lovelier, more dangerous, O my chevalier!

No wonder of it: shéer plód makes plough down sillion
Shine, and blue-bleak embers, ah my dear,
Fall, gall themselves, and gash gold-vermillion.


The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock
by
T. S. Eliot

Let us go then, you and I,
When the evening is spread out against the sky
Like a patient etherised upon a table;
Let us go, through certain half-deserted streets,
The muttering retreats
Of restless nights in one-night cheap hotels
And sawdust restaurants with oyster-shells:
Streets that follow like a tedious argument
Of insidious intent
To lead you to an overwhelming question…
Oh, do not ask, “What is it?”
Let us go and make our visit.

In the room the women come and go
Talking of Michelangelo.

The yellow fog that rubs its back upon the window-panes,
The yellow smoke that rubs its muzzle on the window-panes
Licked its tongue into the corners of the evening,
Lingered upon the pools that stand in drains,
Let fall upon its back the soot that falls from chimneys,
Slipped by the terrace, made a sudden leap,
And seeing that it was a soft October night,
Curled once about the house, and fell asleep.

And indeed there will be time
For the yellow smoke that slides along the street,
Rubbing its back upon the window-panes;
There will be time, there will be time
To prepare a face to meet the faces that you meet;
There will be time to murder and create,
And time for all the works and days of hands
That lift and drop a question on your plate;
Time for you and time for me,
And time yet for a hundred indecisions,
And for a hundred visions and revisions,
Before the taking of a toast and tea.

In the room the women come and go
Talking of Michelangelo.

And indeed there will be time
To wonder, “Do I dare?” and, “Do I dare?”
Time to turn back and descend the stair,
With a bald spot in the middle of my hair
[They will say: “How his hair is growing thin!”]
My morning coat, my collar mounting firmly to the chin,
My necktie rich and modest, but asserted by a simple pin
[They will say: “But how his arms and legs are thin!”]
Do I dare
Disturb the universe?
In a minute there is time
For decisions and revisions which a minute will reverse.

For I have known them all already, known them all:
Have known the evenings, mornings, afternoons,
I have measured out my life with coffee spoons;
I know the voices dying with a dying fall
Beneath the music from a farther room.
So how should I presume?

And I have known the eyes already, known them all
The eyes that fix you in a formulated phrase,
And when I am formulated, sprawling on a pin,
When I am pinned and wriggling on the wall,
Then how should I begin
To spit out all the butt-ends of my days and ways?
And how should I presume?

And I have known the arms already, known them all
Arms that are braceleted and white and bare
[But in the lamplight, downed with light brown hair!]
It is perfume from a dress
That makes me so digress?
Arms that lie along a table, or wrap about a shawl.
And should I then presume?
And how should I begin?

Shall I say, I have gone at dusk through narrow streets
And watched the smoke that rises from the pipes
Of lonely men in shirt-sleeves, leaning out of windows?…

I should have been a pair of ragged claws
Scuttling across the floors of silent seas.

And the afternoon, the evening, sleeps so peacefully!
Smoothed by long fingers,
Asleep… tired… or it malingers,
Stretched on the floor, here beside you and me.
Should I, after tea and cakes and ices,
Have the strength to force the moment to its crisis?
But though I have wept and fasted, wept and prayed,
Though I have seen my head (grown slightly bald) brought in upon a platter,
I am no prophet and here’s no great matter;
I have seen the moment of my greatness flicker,
And I have seen the eternal Footman hold my coat, and snicker,
And in short, I was afraid.

And would it have been worth it, after all,
After the cups, the marmalade, the tea,
Among the porcelain, among some talk of you and me,
Would it have been worth while,
To have bitten off the matter with a smile,
To have squeezed the universe into a ball
To roll it toward some overwhelming question,
To say: “I am Lazarus, come from the dead,
Come back to tell you all, I shall tell you all”
If one, settling a pillow by her head,
Should say: “That is not what I meant at all.
That is not it, at all.”

And would it have been worth it, after all,
Would it have been worth while,
After the sunsets and the dooryards and the sprinkled streets,
After the novels, after the teacups, after the skirts that trail along the floor
And this, and so much more?
It is impossible to say just what I mean!
But as if a magic lantern threw the nerves in patterns on a screen:
Would it have been worth while
If one, settling a pillow or throwing off a shawl,
And turning toward the window, should say:
“That is not it at all,
That is not what I meant, at all.”

No! I am not Prince Hamlet, nor was meant to be;
Am an attendant lord, one that will do
To swell a progress, start a scene or two,
Advise the prince; no doubt, an easy tool,
Deferential, glad to be of use,
Politic, cautious, and meticulous;
Full of high sentence, but a bit obtuse;
At times, indeed, almost ridiculous
Almost, at times, the Fool.

I grow old… I grow old…
I shall wear the bottoms of my trousers rolled.

Shall I part my hair behind? Do I dare to eat a peach?
I shall wear white flannel trousers, and walk upon the beach.
I have heard the mermaids singing, each to each.

I do not think that they will sing to me.

I have seen them riding seaward on the waves
Combing the white hair of the waves blown back
When the wind blows the water white and black.

We have lingered in the chambers of the sea
By sea-girls wreathed with seaweed red and brown
Till human voices wake us, and we drown.

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 Post Post subject: Re: Favourite poems
Posted: Tue Dec 26, 2017 3:48 pm 
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The Raven is amazing. Hands down my new favorite poem from the moment I first heard it in full. Which somehow wasn't until just a couple years ago. I always knew the refrain of course because it's famous but had never actually read or heard the context before.

I still hate the vast majority of poetry on a personal level, but The Raven opened my eyes to the merits of the concept. I no longer detest its existence as a writing style, I acknowledge that it's worthwhile overall, just for the most part not for my own taste.

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 Post Post subject: Re: Favourite poems
Posted: Tue Dec 26, 2017 6:59 pm 
i haz xpirenancee!!1
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all right bookworm, did you just bump this thread for extra money? :noway:

i took a poetry course a few years ago on modern/contemporay american poetry, and one of my absolute favorites is Cid Corman's "It isnt for want":

It isnt for want
of something to say--
something to tell you--

something you should know--
but to detain you--
keep you from going--

feeling myself here
as long as you are--
as long as you are.

:inlove:

i actually wrote an anaysis of it because I really enjoyed it so much.

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 Post Post subject: Re: Favourite poems
Posted: Tue Dec 26, 2017 7:34 pm 
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Marvin D. wrote:
all right bookworm, did you just bump this thread for extra money? :noway:
Actually, no I didn't. Every few months since I had that 'awakening' I would remember my previous post in this thread and think 'I really should post an update that my poetry position has evolved' but it was never when I had an opportunity and by the time I did I forgot about it. Today I was looking over this forum (yes I was looking because of the money, but I wasn't making up random posts to make because of it, look at my bank account do you think I need to spam for extra cash?) and saw the thread and remembered I needed to post so I did.

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 Post Post subject: Re: Favourite poems
Posted: Tue Dec 26, 2017 10:42 pm 
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Yay! I was happy when I saw that my old poetry thread got posted in again.

Bookworm, you have made me want to read The Raven again. I read it years ago for an English class, and of course it's refrain is quite famous, but your love for the poem makes me want to experience it again.

Marvin, I don't think I've read that poem before, but I like it! To me it seems like a great example of how a short poem can say a lot, and everyone who reads it can connect something different and personal to it.

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 Post Post subject: Re: Favourite poems
Posted: Wed Dec 27, 2017 4:44 am 
i haz xpirenancee!!1
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bookworm wrote:
Marvin D. wrote:
all right bookworm, did you just bump this thread for extra money? :noway:
Actually, no I didn't. Every few months since I had that 'awakening' I would remember my previous post in this thread and think 'I really should post an update that my poetry position has evolved' but it was never when I had an opportunity and by the time I did I forgot about it. Today I was looking over this forum (yes I was looking because of the money, but I wasn't making up random posts to make because of it, look at my bank account do you think I need to spam for extra cash?) and saw the thread and remembered I needed to post so I did.

i'd forgotten how seriously you take everything :p

@Catspaw, exactly. my favorite poems are incredibly short and succinct but open up a world of possibility. Another favorite is The Encounter by Ezra Pound.

All the while they were talking the new morality
Her eyes explored me.
And when I rose to go
Her fingers were like the tissue
Of a Japanese paper napkin

I actually wrote a short story based on that one, about this man who meets this woman when they're in a cult-like gathering and they hit it off, but then things go terribly south because of the new morality.

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 Post Post subject: Re: Favourite poems
Posted: Wed Dec 27, 2017 1:35 pm 
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Catspaw wrote:
Bookworm ... your love for the poem makes me want to experience it again.
Love, or maybe minor obsession. :anxious: For at least a week after I heard it I listened to almost every different reading of it I could find over and over, I couldn't get enough. The stanza composition and rhyming style was just unlike anything I'd ever heard before, it captivated me. I found one day that I suddenly had the whole thing memorized, not by trying, just from listening to it so many times.

My favorite reading is the one by James Earl Jones, he uses just about the perfect rhythm and emphasis I think. This is the original, but I prefer this version where someone added background music, it makes it sound so much better somehow:


And this musical version is awesome when you want a more intense rendition:

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 Post Post subject: Re: Favourite poems
Posted: Mon Jan 01, 2018 7:42 pm 
Jehoshaphat Rocks!
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Checking in! Miss y'all! "i cary your heart with me" by E.E. Cummings is my fav poem.

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