Saturday, October 8, 2011

"Like girls on hands and knees that throw their hair, Before them over their heads to dry in the sun..."

On a random (and yes, sick-day I have grown bored now) pop in at Etsy, I saw these. They made me think of my favorite tree growing up and also one of my top three favorite poems ever. "Birches" by Robert Frost.

I think I'll put them on my *things I want for my 40th birthday* list.

So, anyone have any favorite poems? What are they? Why are they? These are the things that flit around in my brain when I don't feel well. Help a bored girl out.

Hope your Saturday is kicking ass.



  1. I do have a favorite poem, but one I'm unfortunately not at liberty to share. It was written by a friend, and takes off from the Simon & Garfunkel song El Condor Pasa, wondering what it would be like to be the nail. She says it speaks to some of her feelings about being a sub.

    I'm in awe of people who can write poetry. They somehow manage to say in ten words what I would take a thousand to express.

  2. I love birch trees too!

    Snake by DH Lawrence.
    Amish Rug by Michael Longley.
    Fern Hill by Dylan Thomas.
    And I refound one I long loved as a teenager by Spike Milligan the other day, only to discover I still loved it in exactly the same why I did then:

    Don't steal it, it's Mine! All Mine...

  3. I started as a poet. A million years ago. It was how I first got published. I think barring the haiku things on twitter I have written one poem in the last decade. It was dirty (duh) and clean sheets pubbed it, but I used to write one poem an hour. One a decade now is pretty sad ;) lol

    Jo, I shall go read your poem so that I can steal it. For. My. Own. }:-D Muwah-ha-ha-HA!


  4. CJ, part of my comment back to you got eaten. I also said it's a shame (to us out here) that a poem that powerful to you isn't for public consumption. But very cool that your fave is written by someone you know.


  5. I can't pick a favorite poem, I'm afraid. So damned many that I love, but here is one I love, and seems to fit the vibe of this moment.

    And I can relate to your comment about starting as a poet, Sommer; It was one of my greatest creative passions as a younger man. I still write them from time to time, not as much as I'd like, because my face is to buried in fiction and day job and family and ...

    Well, I don't have to tell you, do I? :-)

    Anyway, one of my favorite poets is, and always has been, Carl Sandberg. And here is "Good Night."

    Good Night

    Fireworks at a pier on the Fourth of July
    spell it with red wheels and yellow spokes.
    They fizz in the air, touch the water and quit.
    Rockets make a trajectory of gold-and-blue
    and then go out.

    Railroad trains at night spell with a smokestack mushrooming a white pillar.

    Steamboats turn a curve in the Mississippi crying a baritone that crosses lowland cottonfields to razorback hill.

    It is easy to spell good night.
    Many ways to spell good night.

  6. that's lovely, Craig. I've never heard/read that before. :)

  7. Wow, Jo. I do want to steal that. Said the sick woman who just finally got her ass over there to read it. :)

  8. Spike Milligan. Wow. Not a name one hears often these days. Love The Goons. Without them there would have been no Monty Python.

    And here's some Robert Hayden that can be shared.

    Those Winter Mornings

    Sundays too my father got up early
    and put his clothes on in the blueblack cold,
    then with cracked hands that ached
    from labor in the weekday weather made
    banked fires blaze. No one ever thanked him.

    I’d wake and hear the cold splintering, breaking.
    When the rooms were warm, he’d call,
    and slowly I would rise and dress,
    fearing the chronic angers of that house,

    Speaking indifferently to him,
    who had driven out the cold
    and polished my good shoes as well.
    What did I know, what did I know
    of love’s austere and lonely offices?

  9. Oh wow. I vividly remember reading this in class and loving not just the imagery (I could picture it all very vividly) but the sentiment. I had totally forgotten this poem. cool. Thanks! :)



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