In Memory

In Flanders Fields by John Macrae

 

In Flanders fields the poppies blow
Between the crosses, row on row,
That mark our place; and in the sky
The larks, still bravely singing, fly
Scarce heard amid the guns below.

We are the Dead. Short days ago
We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,
Loved and were loved, and now we lie,
In Flanders fields.

Take up our quarrel with the foe:
To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
If ye break faith with us who die
We shall not sleep, though poppies grow
In Flanders fields.

Life Blues

Funeral Blues by Wystan Hugh Auden

Stop all the clocks, cut off the telephone.
Prevent the dog from barking with a juicy bone,
Silence the pianos and with muffled drum
Bring out the coffin, let the mourners come.

Let aeroplanes circle moaning overhead
Scribbling in the sky the message He is Dead,
Put crêpe bows round the white necks of the public doves,
Let the traffic policemen wear black cotton gloves.

He was my North, my South, my East and West,
My working week and my Sunday rest
My noon, my midnight, my talk, my song;
I thought that love would last forever, I was wrong.

The stars are not wanted now; put out every one,
Pack up the moon and dismantle the sun.
Pour away the ocean and sweep up the wood;
For nothing now can ever come to any good.

Octoberfest

I Write You 

I see you in my dreams
I hear you in the rush of streams
I touch you in my mind
And wonder what I left behind.

I smell you on the vine
I taste you in the wine
I sense you everywhere
And wonder if you’re really there.

I write you in my story
I write you in all your glory
I write you in my song
And wonder how I’ve been so strong.

I look up at the moon and stars
I smile despite the wounds and scars
I sense the dawn of a new beginning
And wonder if you too are winning.

Sonnet 73 (Autumn)

By William Shakespeare

That time of year thou mayst in me behold
When yellow leaves, or none, or few, do hang
Upon those boughs which shake against the cold,
Bare ruined choirs, where late the sweet birds sang.
In me thou see’st the twilight of such day
As after sunset fadeth in the west;
Which by and by black night doth take away,
Death’s second self, that seals up all in rest.
In me thou see’st the glowing of such fire,
That on the ashes of his youth doth lie,
As the deathbed whereon it must expire,
Consumed with that which it was nourished by.
This thou perceiv’st, which makes thy love more strong,
To love that well which thou must leave ere long.

Life Goes On

Cupid's Kiss by Antonia Canova (1757 - 1822) Photograph by Mak Thorpe (1997)

Cupid’s Kiss by Antonia Canova (1757 – 1822)
Photograph by Mak Thorpe (1997)

They meet
In time and space.
In a secret
Dreamed of place.
Unreal.
Surreal.
Love is born.
Feelings spawn.
Physical contact
Lacked.
But still
Their love
Is real.

Now gone.
Moved on.
Feelings remain.
Insane.
Love drain
In the garden
Wet with rain.
He feels.
She heals.
He’s glad
But sad.
Not gone
The love
He had.
Life goes on.

 

 

Tomorrow

By Edgar Albert Guest

EAGHe was going to be all that a mortal should be
Tomorrow.
No one should be kinder or braver than he
Tomorrow.
A friend who was troubled and weary he knew,
Who’d be glad of a lift and who needed it, too;
On him he would call and see what he could do
Tomorrow.

Each morning he stacked up the letters he’d write
Tomorrow.
And thought of the folks he would fill with delight
Tomorrow.
It was too bad, indeed, he was busy today,
And hadn’t a minute to stop on his way;
More time he would have to give others, he’d say
Tomorrow.

The greatest of workers this man would have been
Tomorrow.
The world would have known him, had he ever seen
Tomorrow.
But the fact is he died and he faded from view,
And all that he left here when living was through
Was a mountain of things he intended to do
Tomorrow.

I Loved You

By Alexander Pushkin

I loved you; even now I may confess,
Some embers of my love their fire retain;
But do not let it cause you more distress,
I do not want to sadden you again.
Hopeless and tongue tied, yet I loved you dearly
With pangs the jealous and timid know;
So tenderly I loved you, so sincerely,
I pray God grant you another love you so.

If …

By Rudyard Kipling

 

If you can keep your head when all about you
Are losing theirs and blaming it on you.
If you can trust yourself when all men doubt you,
But make allowance for their doubting too.
If you can wait and not be tired by waiting,
Or, being lied about, don’t deal in lies,
Or being hated don’t give way to hating,
And yet don’t look too good, nor talk too wise.

If you can dream and not make dreams your master.
If you can think and not make thoughts your aim.
If you can meet with Triumph and Disaster,
And treat those two impostors just the same.
If you can bear to hear the truth you’ve spoken
Twisted by knaves to make a trap for fools,
Or watch the things you gave your life to, broken,
And stoop and build them up with worn-out tools.

If you can make one heap of all your winnings
And risk it on one turn of pitch-and-toss,
And lose, and start again at your beginnings,
And never breathe a word about your loss.
If you can force your heart and nerve and sinew
To serve your turn long after they are gone,
And so hold on when there is nothing in you
Except the Will which says to them: “Hold on!”

If you can talk with crowds and keep your virtue,
Or walk with Kings nor lose the common touch.
If neither foes nor loving friends can hurt you,
If all men count with you, but none too much.
If you can fill the unforgiving minute
With sixty seconds worth of distance run.
Yours is the Earth and everything that’s in it,
And, what is more, you’ll be a Man, my son!

Spring Is In The Air

At last the daffodils are out! This poem always reminds me of spring and is one of my favourites:

 

I wandered lonely as a cloud by William Wordsworth

 

I wandered lonely as a cloud
That floats on high o’er vales and hills,
When all at once I saw a crowd,
A host of golden daffodils;
Beside the lake, beneath the trees,
Fluttering and dancing in the breeze.

Continuous as the stars that shine
and twinkle on the Milky Way,
They stretched in never-ending line
along the margin of a bay:
Ten thousand saw I at a glance,
tossing their heads in sprightly dance.

The waves beside them danced; but they
Out-did the sparkling waves in glee:
A poet could not but be gay,
in such a jocund company:
I gazed—and gazed—but little thought
what wealth the show to me had brought:

April Poem

Always Marry An April Girl by Ogden Nash

Praise the spells and bless the charms,
I found April in my arms.
April golden, April cloudy,
Gracious, cruel, tender, rowdy;
April soft in flowered languor,
April cold with sudden anger,
Ever changing, ever true –
I love April, I love you.