Poetry Please


Deleted member 189

Non Registered Member
I hope I’m not being too forward for a newbie, but a previous forum I was in had a poetry thread. I know some members like and even write so I’ll throw this here for consideration.
I’ll begin with my personal favourite:

Afterwards by Thomas Hardy

When the Present has latched its postern behind my tremulous stay,
And the May month flaps its glad green leaves like wings,
Delicate-filmed as new-spun silk, will the neighbours say,
“He was a man who used to notice such things”?

If it be in the dusk when, like an eyelid’s soundless blink,
The dewfall-hawk comes crossing the shades to alight
Upon the wind-warped upland thorn, a gazer may think,
“To him this must have been a familiar sight.”

If I pass during some nocturnal blackness, mothy and warm,
When the hedgehog travels furtively over the lawn,
One may say, “He strove that such innocent creatures should
come to no harm,
But he could do little for them; and now he is gone.”

If, when hearing that I have been stilled at last, they stand at
the door,
Watching the full-starred heavens that winter sees,
Will this thought rise on those who will meet my face no more,
“He was one who had an eye for such mysteries”?

And will any say when my bell of quittance is heard in the gloom,
And a crossing breeze cuts a pause in its outrollings,
Till they rise again, as they were a new bell’s boom,
“He hears it not now, but used to notice such things?”

Socratus O' Pericles

PI Member
Oct 30, 2015
Casabianca (1826)
Felicia Hemans

The boy stood on the burning deck,
Whence all but he had fled;
The flame that lit the battle’s wreck,
Shone round him o’er the dead.
Yet beautiful and bright he stood,
As born to rule the storm;
A creature of heroic blood,
A proud, though childlike form.
The flames rolled on – he would not go,
Without his father’s word;
That father, faint in death below,
His voice no longer heard.
He called aloud – ‘Say, father, say
If yet my task is done?’
He knew not that the chieftain lay
Unconscious of his son.
‘Speak, father!’ once again he cried,
‘If I may yet be gone!’
– And but the booming shots replied,
And fast the flames rolled on.
Upon his brow he felt their breath
And in his waving hair;
And look’d from that lone post of death,
In still yet brave despair.
And shouted but once more aloud,
‘My father! must I stay?’
While o’er him fast, through sail and shroud,
The wreathing fires made way.
They wrapped the ship in splendour wild,
They caught the flag on high,
And streamed above the gallant child,
Like banners in the sky.
There came a burst of thunder sound –
The boy – oh! where was he?
Ask of the winds that far around
With fragments strewed the sea!
With mast, and helm, and pennon fair,
That well had borne their part,
But the noblest thing which perished there,
Was that young faithful heart.

Deleted member 189

Non Registered Member
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And in complete contrast:

Resume by Dorothy Parker

Razors pain you;
Rivers are damp;
Acids stain you;
And drugs cause cramp.
Guns aren't lawful;
Nooses give;
Gas smells awful;
You might as well live.


PI Member
Oct 31, 2015
County Londondoire
For Jane: With All The Love I Had, Which Was Not Enough

I pick up the skirt,
I pick up the sparkling beads
in black,
this thing that moved once
around flesh,
and I call God a liar,
I say anything that moved
like that
or knew
my name
could never die
in the common verity of dying,
and I pick
up her lovely
all her loveliness gone,
and I speak to all the gods,
Jewish gods, Christ-gods,
chips of blinking things,
idols, pills, bread,
fathoms, risks,
knowledgeable surrender,
rats in the gravy of two gone quite mad
without a chance,
hummingbird knowledge, hummingbird chance,
I lean upon this,
I lean on all of this
and I know
her dress upon my arm
they will not
give her back to me.

Charles Bukowski


PI Member
Jul 30, 2018
Not my favourite by any means, but one that for some reason keeps me coming back...

A noiseless patient spider,
I mark’d where on a little promontory it stood isolated,
Mark’d how to explore the vacant vast surrounding,
It launch’d forth filament, filament, filament, out of itself,
Ever unreeling them, ever tirelessly speeding them.

And you O my soul where you stand,
Surrounded, detached, in measureless oceans of space,
Ceaselessly musing, venturing, throwing, seeking the spheres to connect them,
Till the bridge you will need be form’d, till the ductile anchor hold,
Till the gossamer thread you fling catch somewhere, O my soul.

Walt Whitman.


PI Member
Oct 31, 2015
County Londondoire
Love this one:

Hay for the Horses
Gary Snyder, 1930

He had driven half the night
From far down San Joaquin
Through Mariposa, up the
Dangerous Mountain roads,
And pulled in at eight a.m.
With his big truckload of hay
behind the barn.
With winch and ropes and hooks
We stacked the bales up clean
To splintery redwood rafters
High in the dark, flecks of alfalfa
Whirling through shingle-cracks of light,
Itch of haydust in the
sweaty shirt and shoes.
At lunchtime under Black oak
Out in the hot corral,
---The old mare nosing lunchpails,
Grasshoppers crackling in the weeds---
“I’m sixty-eight” he said,
“I first bucked hay when I was seventeen.
I thought, that day I started,
I sure would hate to do this all my life.
And dammit, that’s just what
I’ve gone and done.”

Deleted member 189

Non Registered Member
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Great stuff, people. Thank you.


PI Member
Oct 30, 2015
By Dolphin's Barn's very own Lola Ridge:


Do you remember
Honey-melon moon
Dripping thick sweet light
Where Canal Street saunters off by herself among quiet trees?
And the faint decayed patchouli—
Fragrance of New Orleans
Like a dead tube rose
Upheld in the warm air…
Miraculously whole.


PI Member
Nov 4, 2015
In corrigible
A Feast of Friends.

Wow, I'm sick of doubt
Live in the light of certain
Cruel bindings
The servants have the power
Dog-men and their mean women
Pulling poor blankets over
Our sailors

I'm sick of dour faces
Staring at me from the TV Tower

I want roses in
My garden bower; dig?
Royal babies, rubies
Must now replace aborted
Strangers in the mud
These mutants, blood-meal
For the plant that's plowed

They are waiting to take us into
The severed garden
Do you know how pale and wanton thrillful
Comes death on a stranger hour
Unannounced, unplanned for
Like a scaring over-friendly guest you've
Brought to bed

Death makes angels of us all
And gives us wings
Where we had shoulders
Smooth as raven's claws

No more money, no more fancy dress
This other Kingdom seems by far the best
Until its other jaw reveals incest
And loose obedience to a vegetable law

I will not go
Prefer a Feast of Friends
To the Giant family

Jim Morrison


PI Member
Nov 1, 2015
The feminist in me rather balks at this, but still.....

"Be still as you are beautiful,
Be silent as the rose.
Through miles of starlit countryside
Unspoken worship flows
To find you in your loveless room
From lonely men whom daylight gave
The blessing of your passing face,
Impenetrably grave.

Be still as you are beautiful,
Be silent as the rose. "
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PI Member
Oct 31, 2015
County Londondoire
It is hardly surprising that Bertie left the Kirk:


Mary Magdalene, that easy woman,
Saw, from the shore, the seas
Beat against the hard stone of Lent,
Crying, 'Weep. seas, weep
For yourselves that cannot dent me more.

'O more than all these, more crabbed than all stones,
And cold, make me, who once
Could leap like water, Lord. Take me
As one who owes
Nothing to what she was. Ah, naked.

'My waves of scent, my petticoats of foam,
Put from me and rebut;
Disown. And that salt lust stave off
That slavered me -- O
Let it whiten in grief against the stones

"And outer reefs of me. Utterly doff,
Nor leave the lightest veil
Of feeling to heave or soften.
Nothing cares this heart
What hardness crates it now or coffins.

"Over the balconies of these curved breasts
I'll no more peep to see
The light procession of my loves
Surf-riding in to me
Who now have eyes and alcove, Lord, for Thee.'

'Room, Mary,' said He, 'ah make room for me
Who am come so cold now
To my tomb.' So. on Good Friday,
Under a frosty moon
They carried Him and laid him in her womb.

A grave and icy mask her heart wore twice,
But on the third day it thawed,
And only a stone's-flow away
Mary saw her God.
Did you hear me? Mary saw her God!

Dance, Mary Magdalene, dance, dance and sing,
For unto you is born
This day a King. 'Lady,' said He,
'To you who relent
I bring back the petticoat and the bottle of scent.'

W R Rodgers


PI Member
Oct 30, 2015
Well now, if we're talking roses.

"Go, lovely Rose"

By Edmund Waller

Go, lovely Rose—
Tell her that wastes her time and me,
That now she knows,
When I resemble her to thee,
How sweet and fair she seems to be.

Tell her that’s young,
And shuns to have her graces spied,
That hadst thou sprung
In deserts where no men abide,
Thou must have uncommended died.

Small is the worth
Of beauty from the light retired:
Bid her come forth,
Suffer herself to be desired,
And not blush so to be admired.

Then die—that she
The common fate of all things rare
May read in thee;
How small a part of time they share
That are so wondrous sweet and fair!
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