04 May, 2008


I've been intermittently leafing through the complete works of W.B. Yeats (the everyman edition with at least as many pages of notes as poems themselves). It's been quite a slog at times, I've not yet developed an ear (eye?) for longer poems, and I'm pretty sure I'm getting on better with modern poets than classical ones. Still, that's not to say that I haven't enjoyed parts of it.

Nor dread nor hope attend
A dying animal;
Man awaits his end
Dreading and hoping all;
Many times he died,
Many times he rose again.
A great man in his pride
Confronting murderous men
Casts derision upon
Supersession of breath;
He knows death to the bone
Man has created death.

W.B. Yeats (~1933)

I've taken to posting my weekly poem up on the fridge door, as much for my pleasure as for my housemates'. But as with so many things it's become a source of conflict. For I appear to gravitate towards rather grim subject matter, and this poem about death was swiftly removed. Better luck next time.

This week I'm reading some verse by E.E Cummings. It's a special joy because since picking up a book of his about a week ago I've discovered I adore his poetry. It's precisely why I set out upon this enterprise, to discover stuff like this. I might try and pick a cheery one (One ends "and everyone's in love and flowers pick themselves" - should strike a bell with some UK music fans).

Oh yes and I've missed out a week (our internet's cut off!) but I have learnt a poem by Pushkin. Unfortunately it's proven tricky to get hold of much of his work. I'll do that later.

No comments: