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  #121  
Old 25.10.2010, 19:55
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Re: Your Favourite Poems

My Dream
by Ogden Nash

This is my dream,
It is my own dream,
I dreamt it.
I dreamt that my hair was kempt.
Then I dreamt that my true love unkempt it.
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  #122  
Old 25.10.2010, 20:06
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Re: Your Favourite Poems

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Oh, I love Ogden Nash!

I've been on a Hemingway kick lately. Here are two that are good for the expat crowd :

I Like Americans
By A. Foreigner
I like Americans.
They are so unlike Canadians.
They do not take their policemen seriously.
They come to Montreal to drink.
Not to criticize.
They claim they won the war.
But they know at heart that they didn't.
They have such respect for Englishmen.
They like to live abroad.
They do not brag about how they take baths.
But they take them.
Their teeth are so good.
And they wear B.V.D.'s all the year round.
I wish they didn't brag about it.
They have the second best navy in the world.
But they never mention it.
They would like to have Henry Ford for president.
But they will not elect him.
They saw through Bill Bryan.
They have gotten tired of Billy Sunday.
Their men have such funny hair cuts.
They are hard to suck in on Europe.
They have been there once.
They produced Barney Google, Mutt and Jeff.
And Jiggs.
They do not hang lady murderers.
They put them in vaudeville.
They read the Saturday Evening Post
And believe in Santa Claus.
When they make money
They make a lot of money.
They are fine people.
1923




I Like Canadians
By A. Foreigner
I like Canadians.
They are so unlike Americans.
They go home at night.
Their cigarets don't smell bad.
Their hats fit.
They really believe that they won the war.
They don't believe in Literature.
They think Art has been exaggerated.
But they are wonderful on ice skates.
A few of them are very rich.
But when they are rich they buy more horses
Than motor cars.
Chicago calls Toronto a puritan town.
But both boxing and horse-racing are illegal
In Chicago.
Nobody works on Sunday.
Nobody.
That doesn't make me mad.
There is only one Woodbine.
But were you ever at Blue Bonnets?
If you kill somebody with a motor car in Ontario
You are liable to go to jail.
So it isn't done.
There have been over 500 people killed by motor cars
In Chicago
So far this year.
It is hard to get rich in Canada.
But it is easy to make money.
There are too many tea rooms.
But, then, there are no cabarets.
If you tip a waiter a quarter
He says "Thank you."
Instead of calling the bouncer.
They let women stand up in the street cars.
Even if they are good-looknig.
They are all in a hurry to get home to supper
And their radio sets.
They are a fine people.
I like them.
1923
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  #123  
Old 25.10.2010, 20:10
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Re: Your Favourite Poems

This is one which I often find myself quoting when I'm walking across the hills around here, flocks of sheep and herds of cows with the bells ringing gently and the sun low in the sky casting long shadows.

Nod by Walter de la Mare
Softly along the road of evening,
In a twilight dim with rose,
Wrinkled with age, and drenched with dew
Old Nod, the shepherd, goes.

His drowsy flock streams on before him,
Their fleeces charged with gold,
To where the sun's last beam leans low
On Nod the shepherd's fold.

The hedge is quick and green with briar,
From their sand the conies creep;
And all the birds that fly in heaven
Flock singing home to sleep.

His lambs outnumber a noon's roses,
Yet, when night's shadows fall,
His blind old sheep-dog, Slumber-soon,
Misses not one of all.

His are the quiet steeps of dreamland,
The waters of no-more-pain;
His ram's bell rings 'neath an arch of stars,
"Rest, rest, and rest again."

This one just reminds me of the transient nature of things.

Percy Bysshe Shelley - Ozymandias

I met a traveller from an antique land
Who said: "Two vast and trunkless legs of stone
Stand in the desert. Near them on the sand,
Half sunk, a shattered visage lies, whose frown
And wrinkled lip and sneer of cold command
Tell that its sculptor well those passions read
Which yet survive, stamped on these lifeless things,
The hand that mocked them and the heart that fed.
And on the pedestal these words appear:
`My name is Ozymandias, King of Kings:
Look on my works, ye mighty, and despair!'
Nothing beside remains. Round the decay
Of that colossal wreck, boundless and bare,
The lone and level sands stretch far away".
I met a traveller from an antique land
Who said: "Two vast and trunkless legs of stone
Stand in the desert. Near them on the sand,
Half sunk, a shattered visage lies, whose frown
And wrinkled lip and sneer of cold command
Tell that its sculptor well those passions read
Which yet survive, stamped on these lifeless things,
The hand that mocked them and the heart that fed.
And on the pedestal these words appear:
`My name is Ozymandias, King of Kings:
Look on my works, ye mighty, and despair!'
Nothing beside remains. Round the decay
Of that colossal wreck, boundless and bare,
The lone and level sands stretch far away".
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  #124  
Old 12.06.2011, 10:01
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Re: Your Favourite Poems

I walked a mile with Pleasure;
She chatted all the way;
But left me none the wiser
For all she had to say.


I walked a mile with Sorrow,
And ne’er a word said she;
But, oh! The things I learned from her,
When sorrow walked with me.


-Robert Browning Hamilton


Had to get up early to finish up a book before the family gets together again, this poem stared at me from the last pages.
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  #125  
Old 22.05.2012, 22:27
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Poetry corner

Hello mates,
I wanted to open this so that we can discuss some poetry..If people are interested, discussing one poem per day/ two days would do good (any language.. with translation of course).. Kindly let me know about this idea..

Thanks
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  #126  
Old 22.05.2012, 22:29
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Re: Poetry corner

Something along the lines of these ?

Haiku of the day

Got a haiku on your Swiss experience? Post it here!
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  #127  
Old 22.05.2012, 22:35
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Re: Your Favourite Poems

It's a great idea. I merged it with another, pretty rich thread we had already, since there are some gems there..

Very nice. A shout out to another poetry fiend.

I will start with a favorite quote I read in one lit didactic book, an old prof used to say to students: "poetry is not a swear word"..
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  #128  
Old 22.05.2012, 22:45
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Re: Your Favourite Poems

Then we should revive that thread.. I see it has been dead for a while now.. I am a poet (a novice) and I have some sonnets (in iambic penta and hexameters) and an ode (needs some metrical correction).. Can I post them here or it is only poems from established legends?

While NATO attempt to pull out of Afghanistan, I remember this poem by Wilfred Owen:
Strange meeting

It seemed that out of the battle I escaped
Down some profound dull tunnel, long since scooped
Through granites which Titanic wars had groined.
Yet also there encumbered sleepers groaned,
Too fast in thought or death to be bestirred.
Then, as I probed them, one sprang up, and stared
With piteous recognition in fixed eyes,
Lifting distressful hands as if to bless.
And by his smile, I knew that sullen hall;
By his dead smile, I knew we stood in Hell.
With a thousand fears that vision's face was grained;
Yet no blood reached there from the upper ground,
And no guns thumped, or down the flues made moan.
"Strange, friend," I said, "Here is no cause to mourn."
"None," said the other, "Save the undone years,
The hopelessness. Whatever hope is yours,
Was my life also; I went hunting wild
After the wildest beauty in the world,
Which lies not calm in eyes, or braided hair,
But mocks the steady running of the hour,
And if it grieves, grieves richlier than here.
For by my glee might many men have laughed,
And of my weeping something has been left,
Which must die now. I mean the truth untold,
The pity of war, the pity war distilled.
Now men will go content with what we spoiled.
Or, discontent, boil bloody, and be spilled.
They will be swift with swiftness of the tigress,
None will break ranks, though nations trek from progress.
Courage was mine, and I had mystery;
Wisdom was mine, and I had mastery;
To miss the march of this retreating world
Into vain citadels that are not walled.
Then, when much blood had clogged their chariot-wheels
I would go up and wash them from sweet wells,
Even with truths that lie too deep for taint.
I would have poured my spirit without stint
But not through wounds; not on the cess of war.
Foreheads of men have bled where no wounds were.
I am the enemy you killed, my friend.
I knew you in this dark; for so you frowned
Yesterday through me as you jabbed and killed.
I parried; but my hands were loath and cold.
Let us sleep now . . ."

War: Fools script it and the masses follow it like sheep.. Who gave them the right to script? What made the people to follow... This debate will forever rage on.......
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  #129  
Old 22.05.2012, 23:09
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Re: Your Favourite Poems

Another vote for Yeats and my favourite poem of his, The Stolen Child.

Where dips the rocky highland
Of Sleuth Wood in the lake,
There lies a leafy island
Where flapping herons wake
The drowsy water rats;
There we've hid our faery vats,
Full of berrys
And of reddest stolen cherries.
Come away, O human child!
To the waters and the wild
With a faery, hand in hand,
For the world's more full of weeping than you can understand.

Where the wave of moonlight glosses

The dim gray sands with light,
Far off by furthest Rosses
We foot it all the night,
Weaving olden dances
Mingling hands and mingling glances
Till the moon has taken flight;
To and fro we leap
And chase the frothy bubbles,
While the world is full of troubles
And anxious in its sleep.
Come away, O human child!
To the waters and the wild
With a faery, hand in hand,
For the world's more full of weeping than you can understand.

Where the wandering water gushes

From the hills above Glen-Car,
In pools among the rushes
That scarce could bathe a star,
We seek for slumbering trout
And whispering in their ears
Give them unquiet dreams;
Leaning softly out
From ferns that drop their tears
Over the young streams.
Come away, O human child!
To the waters and the wild
With a faery, hand in hand,
For the world's more full of weeping than you can understand.

Away with us he's going,

The solemn-eyed:
He'll hear no more the lowing
Of the calves on the warm hillside
Or the kettle on the hob
Sing peace into his breast,
Or see the brown mice bob
Round and round the oatmeal chest.
For he comes, the human child,
To the waters and the wild
With a faery, hand in hand,
For the world's more full of weeping than he can understand.
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  #130  
Old 23.05.2012, 00:27
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Re: Your Favourite Poems

Fan of Yeats too. Also find myself coming back fairly regularly to that cheeriest of chaps, Philip Larkin.

Next, Please
Always too eager for the future, we
Pick up bad habits of expectancy.
Something is always approaching; every day
Till then
we say,

Watching from a bluff the tiny, clear
Sparkling armada of promises draw near.
How slow they are! And how much time they waste,
Refusing to make haste!

Yet still they leave us holding wretched stalks
Of disappointment, for, though nothing balks
Each big approach, leaning with brasswork prinked,
Each rope distinct,

Flagged, and the figurehead wit golden tits
Arching our way, it never anchors; it's
No sooner present than it turns to past.
Right to the last

We think each one will heave to and unload
All good into our lives, all we are owed
For waiting so devoutly and so long.
But we are wrong:

Only one ship is seeking us, a black-
Sailed unfamiliar, towing at her back
A huge and birdless silence. In her wake
No waters breed or break.
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  #131  
Old 23.05.2012, 00:37
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Re: Your Favourite Poems

I am just cramming to this



it's a poem for those who want

it's misspelled it hurts, but who cares
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  #132  
Old 23.05.2012, 00:54
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Re: Your Favourite Poems

Here's something dedicated to all expats (Psalm by Szymborska):

Oh, the leaky boundaries of man-made states!
How many clouds float past them with impunity;
how much desert sand shifts from one land to another;
how many mountain pebbles tumble onto foreign soil
in provocative hops!

Need I mention every single bird that flies in the face of frontiers
or alights on the roadblock at the border?
A humble robin - still, its tail resides abroad
while its beak stays home. If that weren't enough, it won't stop
bobbing!

Among innumerable insects, I'll single out only the ant
between the border guard's left and right boots
blithely ignoring the questions "Where from?" and "Where to?"


Oh, to register in detail, at a glance, the chaos
prevailing on every continent!
Isn't that a privet on the far bank
smuggling its hundred-thousandth leaf across the river?
And who but the octopus, with impudent long arms,
would disrupt the sacred bounds of territorial waters?

And how can we talk of order overall
when the very placement of the stars
leaves us doubting just what shines for whom?

Not to speak of the fog's reprehensible drifting!
And dust bowling all over the steppes
as if they hadn't been partitioned!
And the voices coasting on obliging airwaves,
that conspiratorial squeaking, those indecipherable mutters!

Only what is human can truly be foreign.
The rest is mixed vegetation, subversive moles, and wind.
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  #133  
Old 30.05.2012, 22:33
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Re: Your Favourite Poems

Today's poem comes from Edgar Allan Poe.. His famous poem 'The Raven'... A brilliant usage of alliterations, enjambments, caesurae, assonance and other rhetorical devices..

See below the video of it being acted out... A true masterpiece...



The Raven

[First published in 1845]
Once upon a midnight dreary, while I pondered weak and weary,
Over many a quaint and curious volume of forgotten lore,
While I nodded, nearly napping, suddenly there came a tapping,
As of some one gently rapping, rapping at my chamber door.
`'Tis some visitor,' I muttered, `tapping at my chamber door -
Only this, and nothing more.'

Ah, distinctly I remember it was in the bleak December,
And each separate dying ember wrought its ghost upon the floor.
Eagerly I wished the morrow; - vainly I had sought to borrow
From my books surcease of sorrow - sorrow for the lost Lenore -
For the rare and radiant maiden whom the angels named Lenore -
Nameless here for evermore.

And the silken sad uncertain rustling of each purple curtain
Thrilled me - filled me with fantastic terrors never felt before;
So that now, to still the beating of my heart, I stood repeating
`'Tis some visitor entreating entrance at my chamber door -
Some late visitor entreating entrance at my chamber door; -
This it is, and nothing more,'

Presently my soul grew stronger; hesitating then no longer,
`Sir,' said I, `or Madam, truly your forgiveness I implore;
But the fact is I was napping, and so gently you came rapping,
And so faintly you came tapping, tapping at my chamber door,
That I scarce was sure I heard you' - here I opened wide the door; -
Darkness there, and nothing more.

Deep into that darkness peering, long I stood there wondering, fearing,
Doubting, dreaming dreams no mortal ever dared to dream before;
But the silence was unbroken, and the darkness gave no token,
And the only word there spoken was the whispered word, `Lenore!'
This I whispered, and an echo murmured back the word, `Lenore!'
Merely this and nothing more.

Back into the chamber turning, all my soul within me burning,
Soon again I heard a tapping somewhat louder than before.
`Surely,' said I, `surely that is something at my window lattice;
Let me see then, what thereat is, and this mystery explore -
Let my heart be still a moment and this mystery explore; -
'Tis the wind and nothing more!'

Open here I flung the shutter, when, with many a flirt and flutter,
In there stepped a stately raven of the saintly days of yore.
Not the least obeisance made he; not a minute stopped or stayed he;
But, with mien of lord or lady, perched above my chamber door -
Perched upon a bust of Pallas just above my chamber door -
Perched, and sat, and nothing more.

Then this ebony bird beguiling my sad fancy into smiling,
By the grave and stern decorum of the countenance it wore,
`Though thy crest be shorn and shaven, thou,' I said, `art sure no craven.
Ghastly grim and ancient raven wandering from the nightly shore -
Tell me what thy lordly name is on the Night's Plutonian shore!'
Quoth the raven, `Nevermore.'

Much I marvelled this ungainly fowl to hear discourse so plainly,
Though its answer little meaning - little relevancy bore;
For we cannot help agreeing that no living human being
Ever yet was blessed with seeing bird above his chamber door -
Bird or beast above the sculptured bust above his chamber door,
With such name as `Nevermore.'

But the raven, sitting lonely on the placid bust, spoke only,
That one word, as if his soul in that one word he did outpour.
Nothing further then he uttered - not a feather then he fluttered -
Till I scarcely more than muttered `Other friends have flown before -
On the morrow he will leave me, as my hopes have flown before.'
Then the bird said, `Nevermore.'

Startled at the stillness broken by reply so aptly spoken,
`Doubtless,' said I, `what it utters is its only stock and store,
Caught from some unhappy master whom unmerciful disaster
Followed fast and followed faster till his songs one burden bore -
Till the dirges of his hope that melancholy burden bore
Of "Never-nevermore."'

But the raven still beguiling all my sad soul into smiling,
Straight I wheeled a cushioned seat in front of bird and bust and door;
Then, upon the velvet sinking, I betook myself to linking
Fancy unto fancy, thinking what this ominous bird of yore -
What this grim, ungainly, ghastly, gaunt, and ominous bird of yore
Meant in croaking `Nevermore.'

This I sat engaged in guessing, but no syllable expressing
To the fowl whose fiery eyes now burned into my bosom's core;
This and more I sat divining, with my head at ease reclining
On the cushion's velvet lining that the lamp-light gloated o'er,
But whose velvet violet lining with the lamp-light gloating o'er,
She shall press, ah, nevermore!

Then, methought, the air grew denser, perfumed from an unseen censer
Swung by Seraphim whose foot-falls tinkled on the tufted floor.
`Wretch,' I cried, `thy God hath lent thee - by these angels he has sent thee
Respite - respite and nepenthe from thy memories of Lenore!
Quaff, oh quaff this kind nepenthe, and forget this lost Lenore!'
Quoth the raven, `Nevermore.'

`Prophet!' said I, `thing of evil! - prophet still, if bird or devil! -
Whether tempter sent, or whether tempest tossed thee here ashore,
Desolate yet all undaunted, on this desert land enchanted -
On this home by horror haunted - tell me truly, I implore -
Is there - is there balm in Gilead? - tell me - tell me, I implore!'
Quoth the raven, `Nevermore.'

`Prophet!' said I, `thing of evil! - prophet still, if bird or devil!
By that Heaven that bends above us - by that God we both adore -
Tell this soul with sorrow laden if, within the distant Aidenn,
It shall clasp a sainted maiden whom the angels named Lenore -
Clasp a rare and radiant maiden, whom the angels named Lenore?'
Quoth the raven, `Nevermore.'

`Be that word our sign of parting, bird or fiend!' I shrieked upstarting -
`Get thee back into the tempest and the Night's Plutonian shore!
Leave no black plume as a token of that lie thy soul hath spoken!
Leave my loneliness unbroken! - quit the bust above my door!
Take thy beak from out my heart, and take thy form from off my door!'
Quoth the raven, `Nevermore.'

And the raven, never flitting, still is sitting, still is sitting
On the pallid bust of Pallas just above my chamber door;
And his eyes have all the seeming of a demon's that is dreaming,
And the lamp-light o'er him streaming throws his shadow on the floor;
And my soul from out that shadow that lies floating on the floor
Shall be lifted - nevermore!
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  #134  
Old 30.05.2012, 22:41
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Re: Your Favourite Poems

i'm a sucker for ee cummings...


It May Not Always Be So; And I Say

it may not always be so; and i say
that if your lips,which i have loved,should touch
another’s,and your dear strong fingers clutch
his heart,as mine in time not far away;
if on another’s face your sweet hair lay
in such silence as i know,or such
great writhing words as,uttering overmuch,
stand helplessly before the spirit at bay;

if this should be,i say if this should be—
you of my heart,send me a little word;
that i may go unto him,and take his hands,
saying,Accept all happiness from me.
Then shall i turn my face,and hear one bird
sing terribly afar in the lost lands
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  #135  
Old 31.05.2012, 14:53
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Re: Your Favourite Poems

ee cummings all the way, yeah

I can't read Raven yet another time, hahahah. Sowwy.

But thought about Hayden Carruth today.
Listen...

http://www.poets.org/viewmedia.php/prmMID/19763

Amazing.
And so rural and simple.
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  #136  
Old 31.05.2012, 14:59
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Re: Your Favourite Poems

"there once was a man from Nantucket
who mistook his wife for a bucket,
he threw her in the well.....
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  #137  
Old 31.05.2012, 15:17
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Re: Your Favourite Poems

le bucket, you forgot.

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  #138  
Old 31.05.2012, 15:19
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Re: Your Favourite Poems

"there once was a man from Nantucket
who mistook his wife for a bucket,
he threw her in the well.....
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said "Oh what the hell",
I'll have to take this bucket ....
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Old 31.05.2012, 17:38
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Re: Your Favourite Poems

Today's poem : by Lord Byron

After seeing a lot of news about dogs recently, today's poem is about dogs themselves.

A poem for all of us and for those in particular, who own dogs or even entertained the thought as such ... A whiplash for all humans who by nature are flagitious and thewless (everybody has a part in them atleast which is thus formed)... Read this people and think on every line of this poem..



Epitaph to a Dog

Near this Spot
are deposited the Remains of one
who possessed Beauty without Vanity,
Strength without Insolence,
Courage without Ferosity,
and all the virtues of Man without his Vices.

This praise, which would be unmeaning Flattery
if inscribed over human Ashes,
is but a just tribute to the Memory of
BOATSWAIN, a DOG,
who was born in Newfoundland May 1803
and died at Newstead Nov. 18, 1808.

When some proud Son of Man returns to Earth,
Unknown by Glory, but upheld by Birth,
The sculptor’s art exhausts the pomp of woe,
And storied urns record who rests below.
When all is done, upon the Tomb is seen,
Not what he was, but what he should have been.
But the poor Dog, in life the firmest friend,
The first to welcome, foremost to defend,
Whose honest heart is still his Master’s own,
Who labours, fights, lives, breathes for him alone,
Unhonoured falls, unnoticed all his worth,
Denied in heaven the Soul he held on earth –
While man, vain insect! hopes to be forgiven,
And claims himself a sole exclusive heaven.

Oh man! thou feeble tenant of an hour,
Debased by slavery, or corrupt by power –
Who knows thee well must quit thee with disgust,
Degraded mass of animated dust!
Thy love is lust, thy friendship all a cheat,
Thy tongue hypocrisy, thy heart deceit!
By nature vile, ennobled but by name,
Each kindred brute might bid thee blush for shame.
Ye, who perchance behold this simple urn,
Pass on – it honors none you wish to mourn.
To mark a friend’s remains these stones arise;
I never knew but one – and here he lies.
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Old 01.06.2012, 21:55
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Re: Your Favourite Poems

One of my favorites from home. He was a microbiologist and a poet.

Dreams


By Miroslav Holub

They sap man’s substance
as moon the dew.
A rope grows erect
from the crown of the head.
A black swan hatches
from a pebble.
And a flock of angels in the sky
is taking an evening class
on the skid pan.

I dream, so I dream.
I dream
that three times three is nine,
that the right-hand
rule applies;
and when the circus leaves
the trampled ground will
once more overgrow with grass.

Yes, grass.
Unequivocal grass.
Just grass.
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