Wednesday, 14 July 2010

Poetry Please

A few favourites:

Edna St. Vincent Millay, 'Being Young and Green'.

Being Young and Green, I said in love's despite:
Never in the world will I to living wight
Give over, air my mind
To anyone,
Hang out its ancient secrets in the strong wind
To be shredded and faded—

Oh, me, invaded
And sacked by the wind and the sun! 

And as Ben thinks I'm now miserable and boring, Emily Dickinson's 'I Had No Time To Hate':

I had no time to hate, because
The grave would hinder me,
And life was not so ample I
Could finish enmity.
Nor had I time to love, but since
Some industry must be,
The little toil of love, I thought,
Was large enough for me.
And finally some Horace:
Book 1, Satire I: 1-22 'Everyone is discontented with their lot'
How come, Maecenas, no one alive’s ever content
With the lot he chose or the one fate threw in his way,
But praises those who pursue some alternative track?
‘O fortunate tradesman!’ the ageing soldier cries
Body shattered by harsh service, bowed by the years.
The merchant however, ship tossed by a southern gale,
Says: ‘Soldiering’s better. And why? You charge and then:
It’s a quick death in a moment, or a joyful victory won.’
When a client knocks hard on his door before cockcrow
The adept in justice and law praises the farmer’s life,
While he, going bail and having been dragged up to town
From the country, proclaims only town-dwellers happy.
Quoting all the other numerous examples would tire
Even that windbag Fabius. So to avoid delaying you,
Here’s what I’m getting at. If some god said: ‘Here I am!
Now I’ll perform whatever you wish: you be a merchant
Who but now was a soldier: you the lawyer become a farmer:
You change roles with him, he with you, and depart. Well!
What are you waiting for? They’d refuse, on the verge of bliss.
What in reason would stop Jove rightly swelling his cheeks
Then, in anger, and declaring that never again will he
Be so obliging as to attend to their prayers.


Benjamin Judge said...

Oh I don't think that really. It is more that you have not, of late, been showing the full range of your personality.

Anyways, good poetry. Here's one bad poem just for you.

Birthday Vole.

Spare a thought
For the Vole today
He is a good Vole

His heart is so big
That he unplugs his fridge
To save the worlds resources

But then you ask for a cup of tea
And there's no fucking milk

The Plashing Vole said...

I don't drink milk (other than in the form of cheese). But I do now buy it if milk drinkers are coming and give me notice. The fridge is switched on in the summer when required.