I came across this poem today. I loved it instantly.  It had to be shared.

There are so many amazing lines, but these are undoubtedly my favourite: “to fling his soul / Upon the growing gloom.”

The word ‘fling’ is simply perfect.

The Darkling Thrush

I leant upon a coppice gate
When Frost was spectre-grey,
And Winter’s dregs made desolate
The weakening eye of day.
The tangled bine-stems scored the sky
Like strings of broken lyres,
And all mankind that haunted nigh
Had sought their household fires.

The land’s sharp features seemed to be
The Century’s corpse outleant,
His crypt the cloudy canopy,
The wind his death-lament.
The ancient pulse of germ and birth
Was shrunken hard and dry,
And every spirit upon earth
Seemed fervourless as I.

At once a voice arose among
The bleak twigs overhead
In a full-hearted evensong
Of joy illimited;
An aged thrush, frail, gaunt and small,
In blast-beruffled plume,
Had chosen thus to fling his soul
Upon the growing gloom.

So little cause for carolings
Of such ecstatic sound
Was written on terrestrial things
Afar or nigh around,
That I could think there trembled through
His happy good-night air
Some blessed Hope, whereof he knew
And I was unaware.

Thomas Hardy, 1900

The Darkling Thrush

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There Are Times

Horas numero, non modo serenas

Times there are for joy
And times there are to wallow.
Clocks will mark all hours
Whether happy or set with sorrow.

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Sighs

Sighs

IN the wintry night,
Under a pale, cold light,
I can see my sighs.
They drop like hammers
From my mouth.

In space
Infinite
I suppose they would fall like
Feathers
– Infinitely –

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An Epitaph

I would have written of me on my stone:

I had a lover’s quarrel with the world.

Robert Frost

***

An Epitaph

Here lies one born a star.
His late death
Was but a dazzling supernova
For Pantagruelian eyes.
To those of us who knew him well
And loved him better,
His light went out long ago,
In darkness,
Unogled by a world
Fallen in the sleep of some other meal.
Today,
Yours is the shadow,
As long it has been ours.

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A Girl

The tree has entered my hands,
the sap has ascended my arms,
the tree has grown in my breast – downward,
the branches grow out of me, like arms.

Tree you are, moss you are,
you are violets with wind above them.
A child – so high – you are,
and all this is folly to the world.

Ezra Pound

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Memorando

Ya en mi vejez
y entrado en añoranzas
que el paso de largos años
no ha podido resolver
ni absolver,
Me traiciona la memoria.
Me trae recuerdos de ti
a donde yo me creía escondido
y los deja a mis pies
como un ratoncito muerto.
Y soy yo quien tiene que mirarle
a los ojos
Nublados y de vidrio
como los míos
Y ya sin promesas de lágrimas
como los míos.
Se han dejado caer todas las
Palabras e intenciones vanas,
Las locas esperanzas
y las esperas enloquecidas.
Yacen todas
Tiradas en el suelo
Como este ratoncito muerto,
Como el amor que te tenía,
Como el yo que fui y ya no soy.

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Stand Up For Your Right

I tell you, it really takes a special type of idiocy to see a long line of people all standing on the right of an escalator and still park yourself blindly on the left.

I mean, what goes through these people’s mind?

Do they stand dumbfounded (with the emphasis squarely on the dumb), looking on it as some sort of miraculous defiance of the laws of probability, asking themselves how is it that given the same random 50/50 choice between right and left that a series of 100 unconnected, free-willed individuals have all, one after the other and without variation, plumped for the right?

Or do they stand there stupefied (with the emphasis squarely on the stupid) thinking “why did my guide book mention the British love of tea, but not this totally crazy thing they’ve got for standing on the right?”, but feeling no need to examine the phenomenon any further, chalking it up instead to just another one of those quaint, twee things that are so endlessly charming about the English and their small island ways and which will, no doubt, feature in the next Hugh Grant documentary (please God let it be soon!), analysed fully in a family-friendly yet in-depth manner.

Well, these people who insist on standing to the left are, as the Spanish say, about as useful as the proverbial zero occupying the same position.

In fact, they’re less so, considerably less so.

And yet the great irony is that it’s they – immune to all common sense and evolved so entirely separately from the rest of all other intelligent lifeforms as they are – it’s they and not the cockroaches who shall be the true survivors of the nuclear holocaust.

Of course, it’s probably them who’ll start the nuclear holocaust in the first place. Bloody Cretins!

P.S. (Post-scream)

While I am talking (ranting) about animals, let me also say that mothers who choose to travel on the Tube with their whole progeny in tow should really take a leaf out of the humble duck’s book, and lead their begats in single file rather than zig-zagging shoulder to shoulder with the little scrotes  (sorry, scrotal issues) in a way that must be calculated to cause the most frustration humanly possible by always leaving a gap just a fraction too small to actually pass around, at least not without whacking one of the indistinguisable spawn in the head  – which it seems society – for some reason – continues to frown upon.

So please Yummy Mummies, do as the duck does, as she alone among the animal kingdom stands possessed with a truly socialist and enlightened sense of time-space economy.

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Transports of Joy

Today as I spent my Sunday just like I seem to spend all my Sundays, standing around at some forgotten bus stop waiting desperately for some non-show bus, it occurred to me that the female orgasm is a lot like a bus: you wait and you wait and you wait for one to come AND THEN…

…you get tired of putting your finger up.

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Redolence

You are redolent of summer,
fresh cut grass,
lemonade
and cinnamon candy.
You are redolent of indolence:
lazy afternoons
that laze into lazier evenings,
and their nights.
You are redolent of all the finer things.
You are redolent of a better me.

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Bouncers

He was one of those men that couldn’t be said to walk down a street so much as bounce along it, seemingly spending as much energy propelling his body vertically into the air as forward along the street. All in all, he gave the impression of a large piece of cork bobbing up and down on what was, funnily enough, an entirely flat sea, or a penguin chick that hasn’t yet realised that flap as it may he will never fly. Or, indeed, a human being that has failed to realise the very same thing.

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