THE HORSES (Ted Hughes)
I climbed through woods in the hour-before-dawn dark.
Evil air, a frost-making stillness,
Not a leaf, not a bird -
A world cast in frost. I came out above the wood
Where my breath left tortuous statues in the iron light.
But the valleys were draining the darkness
Till the moorline - blackening dregs of the brightening grey -
Halved the sky ahead. And I saw the horses:
Huge in the dense grey - ten together -
Megalith-still. They breathed, making no move,
with draped manes and tilted hind-hooves,
Making no sound.
I passed: not one snorted or jerked its head.
Grey silent fragments
Of a grey silent world.
I listened in emptiness on the moor-ridge.
The curlew's tear turned its edge on the silence.
Slowly detail leafed from the darkness. Then the sun
Orange, red, red erupted
Silently, and splitting to its core tore and flung cloud,
Shook the gulf open, showed blue,
And the big planets hanging -
Stumbling in the fever of a dream, down towards
The dark woods, from the kindling tops,
And came to the horses.
There, still they stood,
But now steaming and glistening under the flow of light,
Their draped stone manes, their tilted hind-hooves
Stirring under a thaw while all around them
The frost showed its fires. But still they made no sound.
Not one snorted or stamped,
Their hung heads patient as the horizons,
High over valleys in the red levelling rays -
In din of crowded streets, going among the years, the faces,
May I still meet my memory in so lonely a place
Between the streams and the red clouds, hearing the curlews,
Hearing the horizons endure.
03-04-2011, 04:57 AM #221Female
Enneagram 6w5 sp/sx
03-04-2011, 05:08 AM #222DaliGuest
Originally written, in German, by Johann Wolfgang Von Goethe. Below is a translation.
Who rides there so late through the night dark and drear?
The father it is, with his infant so dear;
He holdeth the boy tightly clasp'd in his arm,
He holdeth him safely, he keepeth him warm.
"My son, wherefore seek'st thou thy face thus to hide?"
"Look, father, the Erl King is close by our side!
Dost see not the Erl King, with crown and with train?"
"My son, 'tis the mist rising over the plain."
"Oh, come, thou dear infant! oh come thou with me!
For many a game I will play there with thee;
On my beach, lovely flowers their blossoms unfold,
My mother shall grace thee with garments of gold."
"My father, my father, and dost thou not hear
The words that the Erl King now breathes in mine ear?"
"Be calm, dearest child, thy fancy deceives;
the wind is sighing through withering leaves."
"Wilt go, then, dear infant, wilt go with me there?
My daughters shall tend thee with sisterly care
My daughters by night on the dance floor you lead,
They'll cradle and rock thee, and sing thee to sleep."
"My father, my father, and dost thou not see,
How the Erl King is showing his daughters to me?"
"My darling, my darling, I see it alright,
'Tis the aged grey willows deceiving thy sight."
"I love thee, I'm charm'd by thy beauty, dear boy!
And if thou aren't willing, then force I'll employ."
"My father, my father, he seizes me fast,
For sorely the Erl King has hurt me at last."
The father now gallops, with terror half wild,
He holds in his arms the shuddering child;
He reaches his farmstead with toil and dread,—
The child in his arms lies motionless, dead.
The text was scored to music by Franz Schubert. Here's a performance by American soprano Jessye Norman:
[YOUTUBE="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8noeFpdfWcQ"]Jessye Norman - Der Erlkönig (Schubert)[/YOUTUBE]
03-04-2011, 05:49 AM #223
- Join Date
- Sep 2009
- 9w1 sx/sp
- EII Fi
Naked Girl And Mirror, Judith Wright
This is not I. I had no body once-
only what served my need to laugh and run
and stare at stars and tentatively dance
on the fringe of foam and wave and sand and sun.
Eyes loved, hands reached for me, but I was gone
on my own currents, quicksilver, thistledown.
Can I be trapped at last in that soft face?
I stare at you in fear, dark brimming eyes.
Why do you watch me with that immoderate plea-
'Look under these curled lashes, recognize
that you were always here; know me-be me.'
Smooth once-hermaphrodite shoulders, too tenderly
your long slope runs, above those sudden shy
curves furred with light that spring below your space.
No, I have been betrayed. If I had known
that this girl waited between a year and a year,
I'd not have chosen her cough to dance upon.
Betrayed, by that little darkness here, and here
this swelling softness and that frightened stare
from eyes I will not answer; shut out here
from my own self, by its new body grace-
for I am betrayed by someone lovely. Yes,
I see you are lovely, hateful naked girl.
Your lips in the mirror tremble as I refuse
to know or claim you. Let me go-let me be gone.
You are half of some other who may never come.
Why should I tend you? You are not my own;
you seek that other-he will be your home.
Yet I pity your eyes in the mirror, misted with tears;
I lean to your kiss. I must serve you; I will obey.
Some day we may love. I may miss your going, some day,
though I shall always resent your dumb and fruitful years.
Your lovers shall learn better, and bitterly too,
if their arrogance dares to think I am part of you.I'm not here as often as I used to be. Sorry if I don't respond to notifications!
03-04-2011, 08:43 AM #224
MARRIED MAN'S SONG (Al Purdy - a great Canadian poet)
When he makes love to the young girl
what does the middle-aged long-married
man say to himself and the girl?
— that lovers live and desk clerks perish?
When neons flash the girl into light and shadow
the room vanishes and all those others
guests who checked out long ago
and only the darkness of her may be touched
only the whiteness looked at
she stands above him as a stone goddess
weeping tears and honey
she is half his age and far older
and how can a man tell his wife this?
Later they'll meet in all politeness
not quite strangers but never friends
and hands touched elsewhere may shake together
with brush of fingers and casual eyes
and the cleanser cleans to magic whiteness
and love survives in the worst cologne
(but not girls' bodies that turn black leather)
for all believe in the admen's lies
In rare cases among the legions of married men
such moments of shining have never happened
and whether to praise such men for their steadfast virtue
or condemn them as fools for living without magic
answer can hardly be given
There are rooms for rent in the outer planets
and neons blaze in Floral Sask
we live with death but it's life we die with
in the blossoming earth where springs the rose
In house and highway in town and country
what's given is paid for blood gifts are sold
that stars' white fingers unscrew the light bulbs
the bill is due and the desk clerk wakes
outside our door the steps are quiet
light comes and goes from a ghostly sun
where only the darkness may be remembered
and the rest is goneFemale
Enneagram 6w5 sp/sx
03-04-2011, 10:10 AM #225
TODTNAUBERG (Paul Celan - trans. Pierre Joris)
Arnica, eyebright, the
draft from the well with the
star-die on top,
written in the book
—whose name did it record
before mine — ?
in this book
the line about
a hope, today,
for a thinker's
in the heart,
forest sward, unleveled,
orchis and orchis, singly,
crudeness, later, while driving,
he who drives us, the man,
he who also hears it,
trails on the highmoor,
Enneagram 6w5 sp/sx
03-04-2011, 12:22 PM #226
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 imposters 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 'em up with wornout 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 breath 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 - which is more - you'll be a Man my son!
03-05-2011, 12:41 AM #227011235813Guest
He Wishes His Beloved Were Dead by W.B. Yeats
Were you but lying cold and dead,
And lights were paling out of the West,
You would come hither, and bend your head,
And I would lay my head on your breast;
And you would murmur tender words,
Forgiving me, because you were dead:
Nor would you rise and hasten away,
Though you have the will of wild birds,
But know your hair was bound and wound
About the stars and moon and sun:
O would, beloved, that you lay
Under the dock-leaves in the ground,
While lights were paling one by one.
03-07-2011, 05:37 AM #228We could learn a lot from crayons. Some are sharp, some are pretty and some are dull; some have weird names and all are different colours, but they all have to live in the same box.
03-07-2011, 09:31 PM #229
WHAT GOD DID NOT PLAN ON
Go to the deep well
As often as possible.
Bring back the water,
Jostling and gleaming.
God did not plan on consciousness
Tell Him our
Pail is full
And He can
Go to Hell.
(Stan Rice)"There is no god; there is only us. Savage and fragile."
03-11-2011, 02:43 PM #230
AT THIRTY (Lynda Hull)
Whole years I knew only nights: automats
& damp streets, the Lower East Side steep
with narrow rooms where sleepers turn beneath
alien skies. I ran when doorways spoke
rife with smoke & zippers. But it was only the heart's
racketing flywheel stuttering I want, I want
until exhaustion, until I was a guest in the yoke
of my body by the last margin of land where the river
mingles with the sea & far off daylight whitens,
a rending & yielding I must kneel before, as
barges loose glittering mineral freight
& behind me façades gleam with pigeons
folding iridescent wings. Their voices echo
in my voice naming what is lost, what remains.Female
Enneagram 6w5 sp/sx
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