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favorite poems

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    Posted: 27 Oct 2017 at 02:33
I am not an anglophile, but I like this one by Rupert Brooke, written during WWI.  It is probably the best known poem coming out of WWI, by the best known poet, unless one counts Robert Graves, who is known better for his historical novels, and writings on myth.

The Soldier

If I should die, think only this of me:
That there's some corner of a foreign field
That is of ever England.  There shall be
In that rich earth a richer dust concealed;
A dust whom England bore, shaped, made aware,
Gave, once, her flowers to love, her ways to roam,
A body of England's, breathing English air,
Washed by the rivers, blest by suns of home.

And think, this heart, all evil shed away,
A pulse in the eternal mind, no less
Gives somewhere back the thoughts by England given;
Her sights and sounds; dreams happy as her day;
And laughter, learnt of friends; and gentleness,
In hearts at peace, under an English heaven. 

1914
A good poem for a history website, I invite others to give some of their favorites.  I believe Brooke died of disease, as did most soldiers before WWII, not of the trenches.  He was buried on the Greek isle of Scyros.



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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Vanuatu Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 28 Oct 2017 at 02:37
franciscosan, great choice "The Soldier" my most loved poems have been about lost lonely people who have a hard almost superhuman struggle to keep going. I would add "The Seafarer" (had may problems getting the title straight). 

The Wanderer

“Often the lone-dweller awaits his own favor,
the Measurer’s mercy, though he must,
mind-caring, throughout the ocean’s way
stir the rime-chilled sea with his hands
for a long while, tread the tracks of exile—
the way of the world is ever an open book.” (1-5)

So spoke the earth-stepper, mindful of miseries,
slaughter of the wrathful, crumbling of kinsmen: (6-7)

“Often alone, every daybreak, I must
bewail my cares. There is now no one living
to whom I dare articulate my mind’s grasp.
I know as truth that it is a noble custom
for a man to enchain his spirit’s close,
to hold his hoarded coffer, think what he will. (8-14)

“Nor can the weary mind withstand these outcomes,
nor can a troubled heart effect itself help.
Therefore those eager for glory will often
secure a sorrowing mind in their breast-coffer —
just as I must fasten in fetters my heart’s ken,
often wretched, deprived of my homeland,
far from freeborn kindred, since years ago
I gathered my gold-friend in earthen gloom,
and went forth from there abjected,
winter-anxious over the binding of waves,
hall-wretched, seeking a dispenser of treasure,
where I, far or near, could find him who
in the mead-hall might know of my kind,
or who wishes to comfort a friendless me,
accustomed as he is to joys. (15-29a)

“The experienced one knows how cruel
sorrow is as companion,
he who has few adored protectors—
the paths of the exile claim him,
not wound gold at all—
a frozen spirit-lock, not at all the fruits of the earth.
He remembers hall-retainers and treasure-taking,
how his gold-friend accustomed him
in his youth to feasting. Joy is all departed! (29b-36)

“Therefore he knows who must long forgo
the counsels of beloved lord,
when sleep and sorrow both together
constrain the miserable loner so often.
It seems to him in his mind that he embraces
and kisses his lord, and lays both hands and head
on his knee, just as he sometimes
in the days of yore delighted in the gift-throne.
Then he soon wakes up, a friendless man,
seeing before him the fallow waves,
the sea-birds bathing, fanning their feathers,
ice and snow falling down, mixed with hail. (37-48)

“Then the hurt of the heart will be heavier,
painful after the beloved. Sorrow will be renewed.
Whenever the memory of kin pervades his mind,
he greets them joyfully, eagerly looking them up and down,
the companions of men—
                                       they always swim away.
The spirits of seabirds do not bring many
familiar voices there. Cares will be renewed
for him who must very frequently send
his weary soul over the binding of the waves. (49-57)

“Therefore I cannot wonder across this world
why my mind does not muster in the murk
when I ponder pervading all the lives of men,
how they suddenly abandoned their halls,
the proud young thanes. So this entire middle-earth
tumbles and falls every day — (58-63)

“Therefore a man cannot become wise, 
before he has earned his share of winters in this world.
A wise man ought to be patient,
nor too hot-hearted, nor too hasty of speech,
nor too weak a warrior, nor too foolhardy,
nor too fearful nor too fey, nor too coin-grasping,
nor ever too bold for boasting, before he knows readily. (64-9)

“A stout-hearted warrior ought to wait,
when he makes a boast, until he readily knows
where the thoughts of his heart will veer.
A wise man ought to perceive how ghostly it will be
when all this world’s wealth stands wasted,
so now in various places throughout this middle-earth,
the walls stand, blown by the wind,
crushed by frost, the buildings snow-swept.
The winehalls molder, their wielder lies
deprived of joys, his peerage all perished,
proud by the wall. War destroyed some,
ferried along the forth-way, some a bird bore away
over the high sea, another the grey wolf
separated in death, another a teary-cheeked
warrior hid in an earthen cave. (70-84)

“And so the Shaper of Men has laid this middle-earth to waste
until the ancient work of giants stood empty,
devoid of the revelry of their citizens.” (85-7)

Then he wisely contemplates this wall-stead
and deeply thinks through this darkened existence,
aged in spirit, often remembering from afar
many war-slaughterings, and he speaks these words: (88-91)

“Where has the horse gone? Where is the man? Where is the giver of treasure?
Where are the seats at the feast? Where are the joys of the hall?
Alas the bright goblet! Alas the mailed warrior!
Alas the pride of princes! How the space of years has passed —
it grows dark beneath the night-helm, as if it never was! (92-6)

“It stands now in the track of the beloved multitude,
a wall wonderfully tall, mottled with serpents—
the force of ashen spears has seized its noblemen,
weapons greedy for slaughter, the well-known way of the world,
and the storms beat against these stony cliffs.
The tumbling snows bind up the earth,
the clash of winter, when the darkness comes.
The night-shadows grow dark, sent down from the north,
the ferocious hail-showers, in hatred of men. (97-105)

All is misery-fraught in the realm of earth,
the work of fortune changes the world under the heavens.
Here wealth is loaned. Here friends are loaned.
Here man is loaned. Here family is loaned—
And this whole foundation of the earth wastes away!” (106-10)

So spoke the wise man in his mind, 
as he sat apart in secret consultation. (111)

A good man who keeps his troth 
ought never manifest his miseries 
too quickly from his breast, 
unless he knows his balm beforehand, 
an earl practicing his courage. (112-14a)

It will be well for him who seeks the favor,
the comfort from our father in heaven, 
where a fortress stands for us all. (114b-5)

*In J. R. R. Tolkien's The Lord of the Rings, in chapter six of The Two Towers, Aragorn sings a song of Rohan (itself a version of Anglo-Saxon England), beginning "Where now the horse and the rider? Where is the horn that was blowing?". The song clearly comes from this section of The Wanderer. (A more strictly literal translation of "mago" would be "youth", hence "Where is the horse gone? Where the young man?" -- but since the horse and the youth appear in the same half-line, Tolkien's rendering "rider" is very hard to resist.)*

The root of all desires is the one desire: to come home, to be at peace. -Jean Klein
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (1) Thanks(1)   Quote toyomotor Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 28 Oct 2017 at 07:37
Australia's national poem.

Quote

THE MAN FROM SNOWY RIVER by A.B. "Banjo" Paterson

There was movement at the station, for the word had passed around
That the colt from old Regret had got away,
And had joined the wild bush horses - he was worth a thousand pound,
So all the cracks had gathered to the fray.
All the tried and noted riders from the stations near and far
Had mustered at the homestead overnight,
For the bushmen love hard riding where the wild bush horses are,
And the stockhorse snuffs the battle with delight.

There was Harrison, who made his pile when Pardon won the cup, The old man with his hair as white as snow; But few could ride beside him when his blood was fairly up - He would go wherever horse and man could go. And Clancy of the Overflow came down to lend a hand, No better horseman ever held the reins; For never horse could throw him while the saddle girths would stand, He learnt to ride while droving on the plains.
And one was there, a stripling on a small and weedy beast, He was something like a racehorse undersized, With a touch of Timor pony - three parts thoroughbred at least - And such as are by mountain horsemen prized. He was hard and tough and wiry - just the sort that won't say die - There was courage in his quick impatient tread; And he bore the badge of gameness in his bright and fiery eye, And the proud and lofty carriage of his head.
But still so slight and weedy, one would doubt his power to stay, And the old man said, "That horse will never do For a long a tiring gallop - lad, you'd better stop away, Those hills are far too rough for such as you." So he waited sad and wistful - only Clancy stood his friend - "I think we ought to let him come," he said; "I warrant he'll be with us when he's wanted at the end, For both his horse and he are mountain bred.
"He hails from Snowy River, up by Kosciusko's side, Where the hills are twice as steep and twice as rough, Where a horse's hoofs strike firelight from the flint stones every stride, The man that holds his own is good enough. And the Snowy River riders on the mountains make their home, Where the river runs those giant hills between; I have seen full many horsemen since I first commenced to roam, But nowhere yet such horsemen have I seen."
So he went - they found the horses by the big mimosa clump - They raced away towards the mountain's brow, And the old man gave his orders, "Boys, go at them from the jump, No use to try for fancy riding now. And, Clancy, you must wheel them, try and wheel them to the right. Ride boldly, lad, and never fear the spills, For never yet was rider that could keep the mob in sight, If once they gain the shelter of those hills."
So Clancy rode to wheel them - he was racing on the wing Where the best and boldest riders take their place, And he raced his stockhorse past them, and he made the ranges ring With the stockwhip, as he met them face to face. Then they halted for a moment, while he swung the dreaded lash, But they saw their well-loved mountain full in view, And they charged beneath the stockwhip with a sharp and sudden dash, And off into the mountain scrub they flew.
Then fast the horsemen followed, where the gorges deep and black Resounded to the thunder of their tread, And the stockwhips woke the echoes, and they fiercely answered back From cliffs and crags that beetled overhead. And upward, ever upward, the wild horses held their way, Where mountain ash and kurrajong grew wide; And the old man muttered fiercely, "We may bid the mob good day, No man can hold them down the other side."
When they reached the mountain's summit, even Clancy took a pull, It well might make the boldest hold their breath, The wild hop scrub grew thickly, and the hidden ground was full Of wombat holes, and any slip was death. But the man from Snowy River let the pony have his head, And he swung his stockwhip round and gave a cheer, And he raced him down the mountain like a torrent down its bed, While the others stood and watched in very fear.
He sent the flint stones flying, but the pony kept his feet, He cleared the fallen timber in his stride, And the man from Snowy River never shifted in his seat - It was grand to see that mountain horseman ride. Through the stringybarks and saplings, on the rough and broken ground, Down the hillside at a racing pace he went; And he never drew the bridle till he landed safe and sound, At the bottom of that terrible descent.
He was right among the horses as they climbed the further hill, And the watchers on the mountain standing mute, Saw him ply the stockwhip fiercely, he was right among them still, As he raced across the clearing in pursuit. Then they lost him for a moment, where two mountain gullies met In the ranges, but a final glimpse reveals On a dim and distant hillside the wild horses racing yet, With the man from Snowy River at their heels.
And he ran them single-handed till their sides were white with foam. He followed like a bloodhound on their track, Till they halted cowed and beaten, then he turned their heads for home, And alone and unassisted brought them back. But his hardy mountain pony he could scarcely raise a trot, He was blood from hip to shoulder from the spur; But his pluck was still undaunted, and his courage fiery hot, For never yet was mountain horse a cur.
And down by Kosciusko, where the pine-clad ridges raise Their torn and rugged battlements on high, Where the air is clear as crystal, and the white stars fairly blaze At midnight in the cold and frosty sky, And where around The Overflow the reed beds sweep and sway To the breezes, and the rolling plains are wide, The man from Snowy River is a household word today, And the stockmen tell the story of his ride.

The Bulletin, 26 April 1890.


Station=Ranch

Stockmen=Cowboys

Cracks=Top horsemen

Kosciusko=Tallest mountain.



Edited by toyomotor - 28 Oct 2017 at 07:37
Once you eliminate the impossible,
whatever remains,
no matter how improbable, must be the truth.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Vanuatu Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 29 Oct 2017 at 01:34
toyomotor, The Man from Snowy River is vivid. Rhythmic and very personal. Have you been to Burrinjuck dam ? Lots of ancient fish fossils and the oldest corals in the world. 
The root of all desires is the one desire: to come home, to be at peace. -Jean Klein
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (1) Thanks(1)   Quote toyomotor Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 29 Oct 2017 at 04:59
Originally posted by Vanuatu Vanuatu wrote:

toyomotor, The Man from Snowy River is vivid. Rhythmic and very personal. Have you been to Burrinjuck dam ? Lots of ancient fish fossils and the oldest corals in the world. 

Yep, and so is Clancy of The Overflow.
Quote

CLANCY OF THE OVERFLOW - A.B. "Banjo" Paterson

I had written him a letter which I had, for want of better
   Knowledge, sent to where I met him down the Lachlan, years ago,
He was shearing when I knew him, so I sent the letter to him,
   Just "on spec", addressed as follows: "Clancy, of The Overflow".

And an answer came directed in a writing unexpected, (And I think the same was written in a thumbnail dipped in tar) 'Twas his shearing mate who wrote it, and verbatim I will quote it: "Clancy's gone to Queensland droving, and we don't know where he are."
In my wild erratic fancy visions come to me of Clancy Gone a-droving "down the Cooper" where the western drovers go; As the stock are slowly stringing, Clancy rides behind them singing, For the drover's life has pleasures that the townsfolk never know.
And the bush hath friends to meet him, and their kindly voices greet him In the murmur of the breezes and the river on its bars, And he sees the vision splendid of the sunlit plains extended, And at night the wondrous glory of the everlasting stars.
I am sitting in my dingy little office, where a stingy Ray of sunlight struggles feebly down between the houses tall, And the foetid air and gritty of the dusty, dirty city Through the open window floating, spreads its foulness over all.
And in place of lowing cattle, I can hear the fiendish rattle Of the tramways and the buses making hurry down the street, And the language uninviting of the gutter children fighting, Comes fitfully and faintly through the ceaseless tramp of feet.
And the hurrying people daunt me, and their pallid faces haunt me As they shoulder one another in their rush and nervous haste, With their eager eyes and greedy, and their stunted forms and weedy, For townsfolk have no time to grow, they have no time to waste.
And I somehow fancy that I'd like to change with Clancy, Like to take a turn at droving where the seasons come and go, While he faced the round eternal of the cashbook and the journal - But I doubt he'd suit the office, Clancy, of "The Overflow".

The Bulletin, 21 December 1889.


No, haven't been there, but the presence of fossils doesn't surprise me. Very ancient skeletal fossils have been found in the past.


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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote franciscosan Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 29 Oct 2017 at 23:48
toyomotor, The poems seem like the equivalent of cowboy poetry, or maybe cowboy poetry is the equivalent of them.  But cowboy poetry usually has lingo from the trade, "doggies," and "mustangs" come to mind.  Is there Australian cowboy lingo, and why does the poet not use it?  Not that he has to, the poems are expressive and, well, good.

I guess there is some lingo in the poem, you footnote it, and I read that first then read the poem.  It read smoothly, so I didn't even think about it as lingo or dialect.

America is very big on the mustang, the P-51 in WWII, an excellent fighter plane was the Mustang, and the Ford Mustang is an iconic muscle car still in production today.  Romantic notions about the mustang (wild horses) get in the way of their management by the BLM (not black lives matter, a different BLM).  The BLM (or maybe it is the Forest Service), estimates the carrying capacity about 20,000, the current population is about 75,000.  BLM spends all its time and money, corralling them and feeding them, can't really afford to pay for darting mares with birth control.  People don't want to kill them, and they don't want to allocate more money to actually solve the problem.
But wild horses are also part of America's mythic past as well.  But also part of the present, (and also its problems).  Don't mean to be a downer, but, toyomotor, I thought I would connect your poem (back) to history.

I remember the movie, "Man from Snowy River," I did not know about the poem. 

And now, a short poem:  "I wish the rent was heaven sent."  Anon.  Clap


Edited by franciscosan - 30 Oct 2017 at 00:02
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote franciscosan Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 30 Oct 2017 at 00:09
Vanuatu,

The Wander is an Anglo-Saxon poem? right?  Is the version you tell edited by Tolkien?  I notice it says middle-earth.  What does that mean in that context?  Is it a Tolkienism that creeped in, or is it in the original poem? 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote toyomotor Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 30 Oct 2017 at 04:04
Originally posted by franciscosan franciscosan wrote:

toyomotor, The poems seem like the equivalent of cowboy poetry, or maybe cowboy poetry is the equivalent of them.  But cowboy poetry usually has lingo from the trade, "doggies," and "mustangs" come to mind.  Is there Australian cowboy lingo, and why does the poet not use it?  Not that he has to, the poems are expressive and, well, good.

I guess there is some lingo in the poem, you footnote it, and I read that first then read the poem.  It read smoothly, so I didn't even think about it as lingo or dialect.

I remember the movie, "Man from Snowy River," I did not know about the poem. 

And now, a short poem:  "I wish the rent was heaven sent."  Anon.  Clap

1. I suppose in a way it is. I see it as a major event being immortalised.

2. No, not lingo, just the usual Australian way (of the time) to describe what happened. We don't call our stockmen "cowboys", we don't call our wild horses "mustangs". Just as a top shearer is a "gun" or a "ringer", a top horseman was called a "crack".

3.I suppose that The Man from Snowy River and Clancy of the Overflow are iconic Australian poems.


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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Vanuatu Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 31 Oct 2017 at 00:23
Originally posted by franciscosan franciscosan wrote:

Vanuatu,

The Wander is an Anglo-Saxon poem? right?  Is the version you tell edited by Tolkien?  I notice it says middle-earth.  What does that mean in that context?  Is it a Tolkienism that creeped in, or is it in the original poem? 

Tolkien created Arda, including and especially Middle-earth, for his languages Quenya and Sindarin, especially the latter as it turned out. To Tolkien, a scholar of the Anglo-Saxon language, Middle-earth was the English translation of the Old English word middanġeard. This word was transformed in the Middle English midden-erd or middel-erd, and the Old Norse Midgard. This is English for what the Greeks called the οικουμένη (oikoumenē) or "the abiding place of men", the physical world as opposed to the unseen worlds.[10]=

The ancient peoples called the world "middle-earth" since it was imagined to be between the realm of the Giants below and the realm of the gods above. However in Tolkien's cosmology the name Middle-earth refers only to a continent, which (in the First and Second Ages) is set between two seas, Belegaer and the East Sea.

Henry Resnick quoted Tolkien saying that "Middle-earth is Europe".[11]

The root of all desires is the one desire: to come home, to be at peace. -Jean Klein
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Vanuatu Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 31 Oct 2017 at 00:33
Coleridge was hopelessly addicted to morphine late 1700's most didn't realize what morphine did (Chinese exception). Did morphine heal except it had to be taken for the rest of your life? Coleridge did understand his addiction and with the help of a doctor he managed his addiction until he died. He did make claims about being highly dosed "Kubla Khan" appearing before his eyes, text on one side and images on the other and all he did was write it down. 



Kubla Khan

Or, a vision in a dream. A Fragment. 

In Xanadu did Kubla Khan 
A stately pleasure-dome decree: 
Where Alph, the sacred river, ran 
Through caverns measureless to man 
   Down to a sunless sea. 
So twice five miles of fertile ground 
With walls and towers were girdled round; 
And there were gardens bright with sinuous rills, 
Where blossomed many an incense-bearing tree; 
And here were forests ancient as the hills, 
Enfolding sunny spots of greenery. 

But oh! that deep romantic chasm which slanted 
Down the green hill athwart a cedarn cover! 
A savage place! as holy and enchanted 
As e’er beneath a waning moon was haunted 
By woman wailing for her demon-lover! 
And from this chasm, with ceaseless turmoil seething, 
As if this earth in fast thick pants were breathing, 
A mighty fountain momently was forced: 
Amid whose swift half-intermitted burst 
Huge fragments vaulted like rebounding hail, 
Or chaffy grain beneath the thresher’s flail: 
And mid these dancing rocks at once and ever 
It flung up momently the sacred river. 
Five miles meandering with a mazy motion 
Through wood and dale the sacred river ran, 
Then reached the caverns measureless to man, 
And sank in tumult to a lifeless ocean; 
And ’mid this tumult Kubla heard from far 
Ancestral voices prophesying war! 
   The shadow of the dome of pleasure 
   Floated midway on the waves; 
   Where was heard the mingled measure 
   From the fountain and the caves. 
It was a miracle of rare device, 
A sunny pleasure-dome with caves of ice! 

   A damsel with a dulcimer 
   In a vision once I saw: 
   It was an Abyssinian maid 
   And on her dulcimer she played, 
   Singing of Mount Abora. 
   Could I revive within me 
   Her symphony and song, 
   To such a deep delight ’twould win me, 
That with music loud and long, 
I would build that dome in air, 
That sunny dome! those caves of ice! 
And all who heard should see them there, 
And all should cry, Beware! Beware! 
His flashing eyes, his floating hair! 
Weave a circle round him thrice, 
And close your eyes with holy dread 
For he on honey-dew hath fed, 
And drunk the milk of Paradise.

The root of all desires is the one desire: to come home, to be at peace. -Jean Klein
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (1) Thanks(1)   Quote franciscosan Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 01 Nov 2017 at 02:04
I enjoy Coleridge, supposedly someone interrupted him when he was visioning Xanadu, and he couldn't get back to it, to remember the rest.  

The Tyger
by William Blake

Tyger! Tyger! burning bright
In the forests of the night,
What immortal hand or eye 
Could frame they fearful symmetry?

In what distant deeps or skies
Burnt the fire of thine eyes?
On what wings dare he aspire?
What the hand dare seize the fire?

And what shoulder, & what art,
Could twist the sinews of thy heart?
and when thy heart began to beat,
What dread hand? & what dread feet?

What the hammer?  What the chain?
In the furnace was thy brain?
What the anvil?  what dread grasp?
Dare its deadly terrors clap?

When the stars threw down their spears,
and water'd heaven with their tears,
Did he smile his work to see?
Did he who made the Lamb make thee?

Tyger! Tyger!  burning bright
In the forests of the night,
What immortal hand or eye,
Dare frame thy fearful symmetry?

I think/feel that the tiger/"The Tyger" is proof of God, and that God is not necessarily 'for' us, although we should be 'for' Him.

I seem to remember the linguist John McWhorter saying that eye/symmetry rhymed in Blake's day, but the language has changed.

Think of the tiger and happy Halloween.




Edited by franciscosan - 01 Nov 2017 at 02:06
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (1) Thanks(1)   Quote toyomotor Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 01 Nov 2017 at 03:30
The Green Eye of the Yellow God

by J. Milton Hayes

There's a one-eyed yellow idol to the north of Khatmandu,
There's a little marble cross below the town;
There's a broken-hearted woman tends the grave of Mad Carew,
And the Yellow God forever gazes down.

He was known as "Mad Carew" by the subs at Khatmandu,
He was hotter than they felt inclined to tell;
But for all his foolish pranks, he was worshipped in the ranks,
And the Colonel's daughter smiled on him as well.

He had loved her all along, with a passion of the strong,
The fact that she loved him was plain to all.
She was nearly twenty-one and arrangements had begun
To celebrate her birthday with a ball.

He wrote to ask what present she would like from Mad Carew;
They met next day as he dismissed a squad;
And jestingly she told him then that nothing else would do
But the green eye of the little Yellow God.

On the night before the dance, Mad Carew seemed in a trance,
And they chaffed him as they puffed at their cigars:
But for once he failed to smile, and he sat alone awhile,
Then went out into the night beneath the stars.

He returned before the dawn, with his shirt and tunic torn,
And a gash across his temple dripping red;
He was patched up right away, and he slept through all the day,
And the Colonel's daughter watched beside his bed.

He woke at last and asked if they could send his tunic through;
She brought it, and he thanked her with a nod;
He bade her search the pocket saying "That's from Mad Carew,"
And she found the little green eye of the god.

She upbraided poor Carew in the way that women do,
Though both her eyes were strangely hot and wet;
But she wouldn't take the stone and Mad Carew was left alone
With the jewel that he'd chanced his life to get.

When the ball was at its height, on that still and tropic night,
She thought of him and hurried to his room;
As she crossed the barrack square she could hear the dreamy air
Of a waltz tune softly stealing thro' the gloom.

His door was open wide, with silver moonlight shining through;
The place was wet and slipp'ry where she trod;
An ugly knife lay buried in the heart of Mad Carew,
'Twas the "Vengeance of the Little Yellow God."

There's a one-eyed yellow idol to the north of Khatmandu,
There's a little marble cross below the town;
There's a broken-hearted woman tends the grave of Mad Carew,
And the Yellow God forever gazes down.
Once you eliminate the impossible,
whatever remains,
no matter how improbable, must be the truth.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote franciscosan Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 10 Nov 2017 at 01:44
Since i did Tyger by William Blake,
I'll do the Panther by Rainer Maria Rilke (1875-1926),
(tr. by Stephen Mitchell)

His vision, from the constantly passing bars,
has grown so weary that it cannot hold
anything else.  It seems to him there are
a thousand bars; and behind the bars, no world.

As he paces in cramped circles. over and over,
the movement of his powerful soft strides
is like a ritual dance around a center
in which a might will stands paralyzed.

Only at times, the curtain of the pupils
lifts, quietly--.  An image enters in,
rushes down through the tensed, arrested muscles,
plunges into the heart and is gone.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote franciscosan Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 16 Nov 2017 at 21:15
Parmenides of Elea, c. 500 BC
Introduction to his mystic, philosophical poem
tr. by Peter Kingsley

The mares that carry me as far as longing can reach
rode on, once they had come and fetched me onto the legendary
road of the divinity that carries the man who knows
through the vast and dark unknown.  And on I was carried 
as the mares, aware just where to go, kept carrying me
straining at the chariot; and young women led the way.
....

This repetition of "carry" is a magical incantatory technique, design to evoke
and drive in the action, reinforce it, over and over. 
it is also found in Homer's Odyssey (Penelope "melting")
and in Sappho, who is probably the greatest lyric poet, and love poet.
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