Thursday, May 31, 2007

Happy Birthday Walt!

Walt Whitman, born this day in 1819.

Beat! beat! drums!--Blow! bugles! blow!
Through the windows--through doors--burst like a ruthless force,
Into the solemn church, and scatter the congregation;
Into the school where the scholar is studying;
Leave not the bridegroom quiet--no happiness must he have now with
his bride;
Nor the peaceful farmer any peace, plowing his field or gathering his
So fierce you whirr and pound, you drums--so shrill you bugles blow.

Thursday, May 24, 2007


A new poem:

In the Wind

I step outside
to wait for the bus
in the sharp wind.
I am still
drowsy thinking
of something I want
to say to you
but you of course
are not here
so I whisper it
to the wind
that draws back
for a moment listening
eagerly though it
has heard it before
it likes to scatter
the words so
they float like
dry leaves in the air.

May 23, 2007

Have a very good Memorial Day!

Monday, May 21, 2007

Robinson's Credo

I've been delighted to see that Edwin Arlington Robinson is slowly coming back into the notice of poetry readers, thanks to a recent biography. Here's a characteristic poem:


I cannot find my way: there is no star
In all the shrouded heavens anywhere;
And there is not a whisper in the air
Of any living voice but one so far
That I can hear it only as a bar
Of lost, imperial music, played when fair
And angel fingers wove, and unaware,
Dead leaves to garlands where no roses are.

No, there is not a glimmer, nor a call,
For one that welcomes, welcomes when he fears,
The black and awful chaos of the night;
For through it all—above, beyond it all—
I know the far sent message of the years,
I feel the coming glory of the light.

Update, May 22

I discovered another excellent link with a virtual tour of Robinson's hometown of Gardiner, ME, with photos, biographical information, and poems.

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