Poetry

Leisure

December 1, 2009

in Poetry

WHAT is this life if, full of care,
We have no time to stand and stare?—

No time to stand beneath the boughs,
And stare as long as sheep and cows:

No time to see, when woods we pass,
Where squirrels hide their nuts in grass:

No time to see, in broad daylight,
Streams full of stars, like skies at night:

No time to turn at Beauty’s glance,
And watch her feet, how they can dance:

No time to wait till her mouth can
Enrich that smile her eyes began?

A poor life this if, full of care,
We have no time to stand and stare.

WH Davies


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The Listeners

December 1, 2009

in Poetry

"Is anybody there?" said the Traveler,
    Knocking on the moonlit door;
And his horse in the silence chomped the grasses
    Of the forest’s ferny floor.
And a bird flew up out of the turret,
    Above the traveler’s head:
And he smote upon the door a second time;
    "Is there anybody there?" he said.
But no one descended to the Traveler;
    No head from the leaf-fringed sill
Leaned over and looked into his gray eyes,
    Where he stood perplexed and still.
But only a host of phantom listeners
    That dwelt in the lone house then
Stood listening in the quiet of the moonlight
    To that voice from the world of men:
Stood thronging the faint moonbeams on the dark stair
    That goes down to the empty hall,
Hearkening in an air stirred and shaken
    By the lonely Traveler’s call.
And he felt in his heart their strangeness,
    Their stillness answering his cry,
While his horse moved, cropping the dark turf,
    ‘Neath the starred and leafy sky;
For he suddenly smote the door, even
    Louder, and lifted his head:—
"Tell them I came, and no one answered,
    That I kept my word," he said.
Never the least stir made the listeners,
    Though every word he spake
Fell echoing through the shadowiness of the still house
    From the one man left awake:
Aye, they heard his foot upon the stirrup,
    And the sound of iron on stone,
And how the silence surged softly backward,
    When the plunging hoofs were gone.

Walter de la Mare

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The Raven

December 1, 2009

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 […]

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God’s Grandeur

December 1, 2009

The world is charged with the grandeur of God.It will flame out, like shining from shook foil;It gathers to a greatness, like the ooze of oilCrushed. Why do men then now not reck his rod?Generations have trod, have trod, have trod;And all is seared with trade; bleared, smeared with toil;And wears man’s smudge and shares […]

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Stop All the Clocks

December 1, 2009

Part 1 of this poem is particularly known for being read at the funeral in Four Weddings and a Funeral. You can see a clip here. I Stop all the clocks, cut off the telephone, Prevent the dog from barking with a juicy bone, Silence the pianos and with muffled drum Bring out the coffin, […]

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If Only

December 1, 2009

Forever and a day, I will keep telling myself; if onlyIf only, I had not let pride carry me awayIf only, I had not let my ego get in the wayIf only, I had overcome the fear of giving too much of myself inIf only, I had stopped the self doubts within,If only, I was […]

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Ozymandias

December 1, 2009

I met a traveler from an antique landWho said: Two vast and trunkless legs of stoneStand 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 […]

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Jabberwocky

December 1, 2009

’Twas brillig, and the slithy tovesDid gyre and gimble in the wabe:All mimsy were the borogoves,And the mome raths outgrabe. “Beware the Jabberwock, my son!The jaws that bite, the claws that catch!Beware the Jubjub bird, and shunThe frumious Bandersnatch!” He took his vorpal sword in hand:Long time the manxome foe he sought—So rested he by […]

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