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Thread: Poets' Corner - Post your poems/song lyrics here

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    Poets' Corner - Post your poems/song lyrics here

    Post your favourite poems or song lyrics here. (Please include credits to relevant Poet/Songwriter. No offensive material.)

    I shall start...

    Rather cynical poem by P Larkin but gets point across quite nicely. One of the first poems I memorised for a presentation in my A level English Lit class...


    This Be The Verse

    BY PHILIP LARKIN

    They f*ck you up, your mum and dad.
    They may not mean to, but they do.
    They fill you with the faults they had
    And add some extra, just for you.

    But they were f*cked up in their turn
    By fools in old-style hats and coats,
    Who half the time were soppy-stern
    And half at one another’s throats.

    Man hands on misery to man.
    It deepens like a coastal shelf.
    Get out as early as you can,
    And don’t have any kids yourself.

    Philip Larkin, "This Be the Verse" from Collected Poems. Copyright © Estate of Philip Larkin. Reprinted by permission of Faber and Faber, Ltd.
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    Never Surrender, Comrade

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    Re: Poets' Corner - Post your poems/song lyrics here

    Great poem KK, thanks for sharing.

    This is a poem I came across on a blog called the "The Writings of Stephen J. Gray". it's simple but sheds more light on the current world situation than a thousand news articles or videos.

    Once

    By Stephen J. Gray

    Once they had homes, some had businesses too
    Now millions are dead, victims of a hellish crew
    Wars were instigated against their countries and lands
    Now the blood runs red on the hot desert sands

    The perpetrators of all this destruction and carnage
    Reside in luxury and are the ruling savages
    Parliaments, congresses and other assemblies
    House these bloody hypocrites and treat them gently

    Instead they should be arrested and put on trial
    For crimes against humanity and murders most vile
    Iraq, Libya, Syria and other countries as well
    Were destroyed and decimated by these scumbags from hell

    These well dressed villains can be seen on the world stage
    Posturing and pimping for more wars to wage
    Will people everywhere, finally say “enough”?
    And put these “leaders” in restraining metal cuffs

    Prison cells is where these “rulers” should be
    They supported all these wars across the sea
    Millions cry out for justice and vengeance
    The victims are dead, they got a life sentence

    There has to be restitution to the countries destroyed
    The war criminals should pay for the misery they deployed
    There is no excuse, based on the horrific evidence
    Now these countries only have war and pestilence

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    Re: Poets' Corner - Post your poems/song lyrics here

    The real Han-shan was a poet living over a thousand years ago in China (“han shan” in Chinese means “cold mountain”) . I first read around two dozen of his existing three hundred poems in translation by Gary Snyder around forty-five years ago, and it’s Snyder’s translations that have stuck with me as the English voice of Han-shan all these years later. Some of Snyder’s translations follow:

    “Clambering up the Cold Mountain path,
    The Cold Mountain trail goes on and on:
    The long gorge choked with scree and boulders,
    The wide creek, the mist-blurred grass.
    The moss is slippery, though there's been no rain
    The pine sings, but there's no wind.
    Who can leap the world's ties
    And sit with me among the white clouds?”

    “When men see Han-shan
    They all say he's crazy
    And not much to look at -
    Dressed in rags and hides.
    They don't get what I say
    And I don't talk their language.
    All I can say to those I meet:
    "Try and make it to Cold Mountain.”

    “In the mountains it's cold.
    Always been cold, not just this year.
    Jagged scarps forever snowed in
    Woods in the dark ravines spitting mist.
    Grass is still sprouting at the end of June,
    Leaves begin to fall in early August.
    And here I am, high on mountains,
    Peering and peering, but I can't even see the sky.”

    “I wanted a good place to settle:
    Cold Mountain would be safe.
    Light wind in a hidden pine -
    Listen close - the sound gets better.
    Under it a gray haired man
    Mumbles along reading Huang and Lao.
    For ten years I havn't gone back home
    I've even forgotten the way by which I came.”

    “I have lived at Cold Mountain
    These thirty long years.
    Yesterday I called on friends and family:
    More than half had gone to the Yellow Springs.
    Slowly consumed, like fire down a candle;
    Forever flowing, like a passing river.
    Now, morning, I face my lone shadow:
    Suddenly my eyes are bleared with tears.”

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    Re: Poets' Corner - Post your poems/song lyrics here

    For our moms. From a former Poet Laureate of the US.


    The Lanyard
    by*Billy Collins

    The other day I was ricocheting slowly
    off the blue walls of this room,
    moving as if underwater from typewriter to piano,
    from bookshelf to an envelope lying on the floor,
    when I found myself in the L section of the dictionary
    where my eyes fell upon the word*lanyard.

    No cookie nibbled by a French novelist
    could send one into the past more suddenly—
    a past where I sat at a workbench at a camp
    by a deep Adirondack lake
    learning how to braid long thin plastic strips*
    into a lanyard, a gift for my mother.

    I had never seen anyone use a lanyard
    or wear one, if that's what you did with them,
    but that did not keep me from crossing*
    strand over strand again and again
    until I had made a boxy*
    red and white lanyard for my mother.

    She gave me life and milk from her breasts,
    and I gave her a lanyard.
    She nursed me in many a sick room,
    lifted spoons of medicine to my lips,*
    laid cold face-cloths on my forehead,
    and then led me out into the airy light

    and taught me to walk and swim,*
    and I , in turn, presented her with a lanyard.
    Here are thousands of meals, she said,
    and here is clothing and a good education.
    And here is your lanyard, I replied,
    which I made with a little help from a counselor.

    Here is a breathing body and a beating heart,
    strong legs, bones and teeth,
    and two clear eyes to read the world, she whispered,
    and here, I said, is the lanyard I made at camp.
    And here, I wish to say to her now,
    is a smaller gift—not the worn truth

    that you can never repay your mother,
    but the rueful admission that when she took*
    the two-tone lanyard from my hand,*
    I was as sure as a boy could be
    that this useless, worthless thing I wove*
    out of boredom would be enough to make us even.

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    Re: Poets' Corner - Post your poems/song lyrics here

    I discovered Gerard Manley Hopkins' poetry as a teenager - again, his poems have stuck with me. This is one of the bleaker ones, yet it described anxiety/depression to me in a way nothing else did at the time. It is good to compare it with some of Hopkins' more uplifting poems.

    No worst, there is none. Pitched past pitch of grief,
    More pangs will, schooled at forepangs, wilder wring.
    Comforter, where, where is your comforting?
    Mary, mother of us, where is your relief?
    My cries heave, herds-long; huddle in a main, a chief
    Woe, wórld-sorrow; on an áge-old anvil wince and sing —
    Then lull, then leave off. Fury had shrieked 'No ling-
    ering! Let me be fell: force I must be brief."'

    O the mind, mind has mountains; cliffs of fall
    Frightful, sheer, no-man-fathomed. Hold them cheap
    May who ne'er hung there. Nor does long our small
    Durance deal with that steep or deep. Here! creep,
    Wretch, under a comfort serves in a whirlwind: all
    Life death does end and each day dies with sleep.

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    Re: Poets' Corner - Post your poems/song lyrics here

    Enjoyed reading all your poems - keep them coming...

    A poem which evokes much melancholy feeling in me is by Alfred, Lord Tennyson, written in early 1835, an elegy to his late friend and fellow poet Arthur Henry Hallam.



    Break, Break, Break


    Break, break, break,
    On thy cold grey stones, O Sea!
    And I would that my tongue could utter
    The thoughts that arise in me.

    O well for the fisherman's boy,
    That he shouts with his sister at play!
    O well for the sailor lad,
    That he sings in his boat on the bay!

    And the stately ships go on
    To their haven under the hill;
    But O for the touch of a vanish'd hand,
    And the sound of a voice that is still!

    Break, break, break,
    At the foot of thy crags, O Sea!
    But the tender grace of a day that is dead,
    Will never come back to me.



    Alfred, Lord Tennyson
    Last edited by KK77; 04-10-17 at 18:59.
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    Re: Poets' Corner - Post your poems/song lyrics here

    Casey at the Bat

    The outlook wasn't brilliant for the Mudville Nine that day;*
    The score stood four to two, with but one inning more to play,*
    And then when Cooney died at first, and Barrows did the same,*
    A pall-like silence fell upon the patrons of the game.*

    A straggling few got up to go in deep despair. The rest*
    Clung to that hope which springs eternal in the human breast;*
    They thought, 'If only Casey could but get a whack at that-*
    We'd put up even money now, with Casey at the bat.'*

    But Flynn preceded Casey, as did also Jimmy Blake,*
    And the former was a lulu, while the latter was a cake;*
    So upon that stricken multitude grim melancholy sat,*
    For there seemed but little chance of Casey getting to the bat.*

    But Flynn let drive a single, to the wonderment of all,*
    And Blake, the much despisèd, tore the cover off the ball;*
    And when the dust had lifted, and men saw what had occurred,*
    There was Jimmy safe at second and Flynn a-hugging third.*

    Then from five thousand throats and more there rose a lusty yell;*
    It rumbled through the valley, it rattled in the dell;*
    It pounded on the mountain and recoiled upon the flat,*
    For Casey, mighty Casey, was advancing to the bat.*

    There was ease in Casey's manner as he stepped into his place;*
    There was pride in Casey's bearing and a smile lit Casey's face.*
    And when, responding to the cheers, he lightly doffed his hat,*
    No stranger in the crowd could doubt 'twas Casey at the bat.*

    Ten thousand eyes were on him as he rubbed his hands with dirt;*
    Five thousand tongues applauded when he wiped them on his shirt;*
    Then while the writhing pitcher ground the ball into his hip,*
    Defiance flashed in Casey's eye, a sneer curled Casey's lip.*

    And now the leather-covered sphere came hurtling through the air,*
    And Casey stood a-watching it in haughty grandeur there.*
    Close by the sturdy batsman the ball unheeded sped-*
    'That ain't my style,' said Casey. 'Strike one! ' the umpire said.*

    From the benches, black with people, there went up a muffled roar,*
    Like the beating of the storm-waves on a stern and distant shore;*
    'Kill him! Kill the umpire! ' shouted some one on the stand;*
    And it's likely they'd have killed him had not Casey raised his hand.*

    With a smile of Christian charity great Casey's visage shone;*
    He stilled the rising tumult; he bade the game go on;*
    He signaled to the pitcher, and once more the dun sphere flew;*
    But Casey still ignored it, and the umpire said, 'Strike two! '*

    'Fraud! ' cried the maddened thousands, and echo answered 'Fraud! '*
    But one scornful look from Casey and the audience was awed.*
    They saw his face grow stern and cold, they saw his muscles strain,*
    And they knew that Casey wouldn't let that ball go by again.*

    The sneer has fled from Casey's lip, his teeth are clenched in hate;*
    He pounds with cruel violence his bat upon the plate.*
    And now the pitcher holds the ball, and now he lets it go.*
    And now the air is shattered by the force of Casey's blow.*

    Oh, somewhere in this favored land the sun is shining bright;*
    The band is playing somewhere, and somewhere hearts are light,*
    And somewhere men are laughing, and little children shout;*
    But there is no joy in Mudville- mighty Casey has struck out.

    by Ernest Lawrence Thayer

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    Re: Poets' Corner - Post your poems/song lyrics here

    Very deep poems everyone, thanks for sharing. Here's another poem from a book I was reading about Mindfulness.

    The Guest House

    This being human is a guest house.
    Every morning a new arrival.

    A joy, a depression, a meanness,
    some momentary awareness comes
    as an unexpected visitor.

    Welcome and entertain them all!
    Even if they are a crowd of sorrows,
    who violently sweep your house
    empty of its furniture,
    still, treat each guest honorably.
    He may be clearing you out
    for some new delight.

    The dark thought, the shame, the malice.
    meet them at the door laughing and invite them in.

    Be grateful for whatever comes.
    because each has been sent
    as a guide from beyond.

    — Jellaludin Rumi,
    translation by Coleman Barks

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    Re: Poets' Corner - Post your poems/song lyrics here

    A favourite of mine by Charles Baudelaire (with English translation following!). I don't necessarily see it as about drinking - more the need to have a passion in life.

    Enivrez-vous. Get drunk!

    Charles Baudelaire (1821-1867).

    Il faut être toujours ivre. Tout est là: c’est l’unique question.

    Pour ne pas sentir l’horrible fardeau du Temps qui brise vos épaules et vous penche vers la terre, il faut vous enivrer sans trêve.

    Mais de quoi? De vin, de poésie, ou de vertu, à votre guise. Mais enivrez-vous.

    Et si quelquefois, sur les marches d’un palais, sur l’herbe verte d’un fossé, dans la solitude morne de votre chambre, vous vous réveillez, l’ivresse déjà diminuée ou disparue,

    demandez au vent, à la vague, à l’étoile, à l’oiseau, à l’horloge, à tout ce qui fuit, à tout ce qui gémit, à tout ce qui roule, à tout ce qui chante, à tout ce qui parle, demandez quelle heure il est;

    et le vent, la vague, l’étoile, l’oiseau, l’horloge, vous répondront: “Il est l’heure de s’enivrer!

    Pour n’être pas les esclaves martyrisés du Temps, enivrez-vous; enivrez-vous sans cesse! De vin, de poésie ou de vertu, à votre guise.

    * * * * *

    Get drunk!

    You must always be drunk. Therein lies everything: it’s all that matters.

    So as not to feel the dread burden of Time which breaks your shoulders and drags you toward the earth, you must never stop being drunk.

    But on what? Whether on wine, poetry or virtue, it's up to you. But get drunk.

    And if sometimes, on the steps of a palace, in the green grass of a ditch, or in the dreary solitude of your room, you wake up, the drunkenness already faded or gone,

    ask the wind, the waves, the stars, the birds, the clocks; ask everything that flees, everything that moans, everything that moves, everything that sings, everything that speaks: ask them what time it is;

    and the wind, the waves, the stars, the birds, and the clocks will all reply: “It is the drinking hour!”.

    To escape being a tormented slave of Time, get drunk. Get drunk, without cease. On wine, poetry, or virtue, it's up to you.
    Last edited by hanshan; 05-10-17 at 16:00. Reason: Better translation

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    Re: Poets' Corner - Post your poems/song lyrics here

    A canner exceedingly canny
    Once remarked to his granny
    A canner can can
    Anything that he can
    But a canner can't can a can
    Can he

    ---------- Post added at 12:41 ---------- Previous post was at 12:40 ----------

    The author escapes me...sorry.

    ---------- Post added at 12:45 ---------- Previous post was at 12:41 ----------

    There once was a man from Nantucket
    Who kept all his cash in a bucket.
    His daughter, named Nan, Ran away with a man,
    And as for the bucket, Nantucket.

    The pair of them went to Manhasset,
    (Nan and the man with the asset.)
    Pa followed them there, But they left in a tear,
    And as for the asset, Manhasset.

    Pa followed the pair to Pawtucket,
    (Nan and the man with the bucket.)
    Pa said to the man, "You're welcome to Nan."
    But as for the bucket, Pawtucket.

    Author unknown

    ---------- Post added at 12:46 ---------- Previous post was at 12:45 ----------

    Btw there is a much more adult version of that one

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