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Old 11-09-2003, 05:30 PM   #1
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wink Favourite poems

Not like we haven't had a thread like this before, gota love me for being original


I have really been getting into WH Auden at the moment hadnt read anything by him while I was studying English my favourites though are WB Yeats and Oscar Wilde


When You Are Old - Yeats

WHEN you are old and gray 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 among a crowd of stars.

As I Walked Out One Evening
W. H. Auden


As I walked out one evening,
Walking down Bristol Street,
The crowds upon the pavement
Were fields of harvest wheat.

And down by the brimming river
I heard a lover sing
Under an arch of the railway:
'Love has no ending.

'I'll love you, dear, I'll love you
Till China and Africa meet,
And the river jumps over the mountain
And the salmon sing in the street,

'I'll love you till the ocean
Is folded and hung up to dry
And the seven stars go squawking
Like geese about the sky.

'The years shall run like rabbits,
For in my arms I hold
The Flower of the Ages,
And the first love of the world.'

But all the clocks in the city
Began to whirr and chime:
'O let not Time deceive you,
You cannot conquer Time.

'In the burrows of the Nightmare
Where Justice naked is,
Time watches from the shadow
And coughs when you would kiss.

'In headaches and in worry
Vaguely life leaks away,
And Time will have his fancy
To-morrow or to-day.

'Into many a green valley
Drifts the appalling snow;
Time breaks the threaded dances
And the diver's brilliant bow.

'O plunge your hands in water,
Plunge them in up to the wrist;
Stare, stare in the basin
And wonder what you've missed.

'The glacier knocks in the cupboard,
The desert sighs in the bed,
And the crack in the tea-cup opens
A lane to the land of the dead.

'Where the beggars raffle the banknotes
And the Giant is enchanting to Jack,
And the Lily-white Boy is a Roarer,
And Jill goes down on her back.

'O look, look in the mirror,
O look in your distress:
Life remains a blessing
Although you cannot bless.

'O stand, stand at the window
As the tears scald and start;
You shall love your crooked neighbour
With your crooked heart.'

It was late, late in the evening,
The lovers they were gone;
The clocks had ceased their chiming,
And the deep river ran on.
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Old 11-09-2003, 05:31 PM   #2
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I am quite fond of this one too

The More Loving One
W. H. Auden


Looking up at the stars, I know quite well
That, for all they care, I can go to hell,
But on earth indifference is the least
We have to dread from man or beast.

How should we like it were stars to burn
With a passion for us we could not return?
If equal affection cannot be,
Let the more loving one be me.

Admirer as I think I am
Of stars that do not give a damn,
I cannot, now I see them, say
I missed one terribly all day.

Were all stars to disappear or die,
I should learn to look at an empty sky
And feel its total dark sublime,
Though this might take me a little time.
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Old 11-10-2003, 12:44 AM   #3
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I love WB YEATS and OSCAR WILDE, I posted in my journal some of Yeats poems I like and I also posted some of Emily Dickinson's poems too.
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Old 11-11-2003, 12:32 PM   #4
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En Paz (Amado Nervo)

Muy cerca de mi ocaso, yo te bendigo, Vida,
porque nunca me diste ni esperanza fallida,
ni trabajos injustos, ni pena inmerecida;
porque veo al final de mi rudo camino
que yo fui el arquitecto de mi propio destino;
que si extraje la miel o la hiel de las cosas,
fue porque en ellas puse hiel o mieles sabrosas:
cuando planté rosales coseché siempre rosas.

Cierto, a mis lozanías va a seguir el invierno:
¡mas tú no me dijiste que mayo fuese eterno!
Hallé sin duda largas las noches de mis penas;
mas no me prometiste tan sólo noches buenas;
y en cambio tuve algunas santamente serenas...
Amé, fui amado, el sol acarició mi faz.
¡Vida, nada me debes! ¡Vida, estamos en paz!

in english... (Translation badly made, btw ¬¬')

In Peace (Amado Nervo)

Closely of my west, I bless you, Life,
Because you gave me not even unsuccessful hope,
Neither unjust works, nor an undeserved sorrow;
Because I see at the end of my rough way
That I was the architect of my own destiny;
That if I extracted the honey or the gall of the things,
It was because in them I put gall or tasty honeys:
When I planted rose-bushes I harvested always roses.

Certain, to my luxuriances it's going to continue the winter:
Neverlethess you didn't say me that May was eternal!
I found undoubtedly long the nights of my sorrows;
Nevertheless you didn't promise me only good nights;
And on the other hand I had some of holy serenity...
I loved, was loved, the Sun caressed my face.
Life, nothing you owe me! Life, we are in peace!

---

This one is my favorite poem of all my life
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Old 11-17-2003, 12:56 PM   #5
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I love so many poets: Donne, Jonson, Yeats, Blake, Byron, Shelley, Herbert, Shakespeare, Wordsworth... I know I'm forgetting a few faves. I find their bios fascinating. I have too many fave poems to list, but I'll include one of the pairs from Blake's collection 'Songs of Innocence and Experience'. He wrote many paired poems using two starkly different viewpoints for the same scene. Generally speaking, the latter or darker poems (experience) were written several years after their lighter (innocent) counterparts.

Holy Thursday

'Twas on a Holy Thursday, their innocent faces clean
The children walking two & two, in red & blue & green;
Grey headed beadles walkd before with wands as white as snow,
Till into the high dome of Paul's they like Thames' waters flow.

O what a multitude they seemd, these flowers of London town!
Seated in companies they sit with radiance all their own,
The hum of multitudes was there, but multitudes of lambs,
Thousands of little boys & girls raising their innocent hands.

Now like a mighty wind they raise to heaven the voice of song,
Or like harmonious thunderings the seat of heaven among,
Beneath them sit the aged men, wise guardians of the poor,
Then cherish pity, lest you drive an angel from your door.

1784.

Holy Thursday

Is this a holy thing to see,
In a rich and fruitful land,
Babes reduced to misery,
Fed with cold and usurous hand?

Is that trembling cry a song?
Can it be a song of joy?
And so many children poor?
It is a land of poverty!

And their sun does never shine,
And their fields are bleak and bare;
And their ways are fill'd with thorns,
It is eternal winter there.

For where-e'er the sun does shine,
And where-e'er the rain does fall,
Babe can never hunger there,
Nor poverty the mind appall.

1794.
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