Category Archives: Poetry

Under the influence of both Louis MacNeice and Dylan Thomas

It is always a pleasure to discover a new poet as I did when I came across the following book locally, which I strongly recommend for its style and elegance ;-

The spirits have dispersed, the woods
faded to grey from midnight blue
leaving a powdery residue,
night music fainter, frivolous gods
withdrawing, cries of yin and yang,
discords of the bionic young;
cobweb and insects, hares and deer,
wild strawberries and eglantine,
dawn silence of the biosphere,
amid the branches a torn wing
— what is this enchanted place?

From The Dream Play
By Derek Mahon

More may be found at www.poetryoutloud.org/poems-and-performance/poems/detail/92168

Image result for derek mahon

 

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The ingenious poetry of Szymborska

I love these lines from this Polish Nobel Prize-winning poet, Wislawa  Symborska:-

“We stand in the meadow where it became flesh,
and the meadow is silent as a false witness.
Sunny. Green. Nearby, a forest
with wood for chewing and water under the bark-
every day a full ration of the view
until you go blind. Overhead, a bird-
the shadow of its life-giving wings
brushed their lips. Their jaws opened.
Teeth clacked against teeth.
At night, the sickle moon shone in the sky
and reaped wheat for their bread.
Hands came floating from blackened icons,
empty cups in their fingers.” They come from her poem “Some like poetry” which can be read at http://famouspoetsandpoems.com/poets/wislawa_szymborska/poems/11678

Her poems are also available in German from Suhrkamp

The Spring by Ezra Pound

The Spring
By Ezra Pound

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

CYDONIAN spring with her attendant train,
Maelids and water-girls,
Stepping beneath a boisterous wind from Thrace,
Throughout this sylvan place
Spreads the bright tips, 5
And every vine-stock is
Clad in new brilliancies.
And wild desire
Falls like black lightning.
O bewildered heart,
Though every branch have back what last year lost, 10
She, who moved here amid the cyclamen,
Moves only now a clinging tenuous ghost.

 

Andrey Remnev and Olga Suvorova- two contemporary golden and iconic Russian Painters

Now the garden was long and the visibility poor, the way
the dark of the ground seems to drink the light of the sky,
but that twig in his hand was gold. And then he plucked
a pear from a branch. – we grew Fondante d’Automne –
and it sat in his palm, like a lightbulb. On.
I thought to myself, Is he putting fairy lights in the tree?

 

(From Mrs Midas, by Carol Ann Duffy)

Meredith as perceived by Richard Le Gallienne

I found Meredith a rather overwhelming person,

at least to me- a diffident youth.

A brilliant and fantastic talker-

one needed to be more his age;

more his intellectual match

to parry his verbal swordplay

and to comprehend his whimsical soliloquies.

 

He received me with the sympathy of a father-

soon put me at my ease.

His talk was like his books;

elaborately fanciful, knotted with thought,

a thicket of thorn bushes

hung with sudden starry blossoms.

One had to snatch what one could.

 

I was magnetised by the rush and verve

of his resonant voice, and dominated

by his lordly manner.

It seemed to me, slightly theatrical,

almost affected bravura.

Ulysses must have been such a man,

tall, lean and a rugged fighter.

 

With that far off crafty look

he seemed to me characteristically Welsh;

Roughly bearded, high browed,

keen grey eyes, slightly upturned fighting nose.

An immense intellectual alertness pervaded

his vigorous frame and was

his most characteristic expression.

 

His portrait,

known to everyone that reads,

by Hollyer is himself,

exactly.

Image result for george meredith

 

(Source of found poem- The Romantic 90s by Richard Le Gallienne)

More about Hollyer can be found at the V and A website https://www.vam.ac.uk/articles/frederick-hollyer-life-and-work

 

 

 

South of the Border-

Image result for diego rivera paintings

South of the border down Mexico way lies

Venezuela and revolution or possibly invasion

South of the narrow isthmus

across which the Chinese  and Nicaraguans are digging a new wider,

deeper canal…..for oil.

Down further in Brazil,

the latest fascist dictator

repeats his pedantic boring chants

in favour of free markets requiring

rain forests be despoiled.

Over the border lies trouble

….but build a wall?

Will not do any good at all.

The drugs will still pour in, Mr Trump-

your so called secure society a sorry business

with its own ecological dumps.

Anyway, anyhow that wall would be porous;

the gringos, aid and arms flowing south.

You might build a wall on the border

to keep the Mexicans out

but what do you do to your people

and yourself?

Let in the bright coloured flowers,

Diego’s art, let it grow…

before your population, sing once again

“Sag mir, wo die Blumen sind?”

Gone to soldiers every one?

When will we ever learn?

Image result for Nicaraguan Canal