Posts tagged ‘1951’

Wednesday, 24 July 2019

Like Pinocchio by Jean Farley

Your white house leans from the dark
and that wax-white, far-off you,
leaning from the window
has hair that hangs down all blue.

The long grass stems that tilt and cross
above the cricket’s breathing back
are whirring in this wind,
are, in this starlight, grey and black.

You have quietly closed your window
and I loiter here below.
A black night beetle cracks up against my knee:
I am jointed like Pinocchio.

Assassins will come as charcoal sacks
and hang me in an oak to jerk and spin.
Brittle as slate or a cricket’s shell,
my feet will clatter all night in the wind.


Date: 1951

By: Jean Farley (1928- )

Saturday, 4 May 2019

Sonnet (The Song of Birds) by Matteo Maria Boiardo

The song of birds which leaps from leaf to leaf,
The scented breeze that runs from flower to flower,
The shining dew that glitters in each bower,
Rejoice our sight and banish thoughts of grief.
It is because She holds all Nature in fief
Whose will is that the world shall live Love’s hour;
Sweet scents and songs – the Spring’s own magic power—
Each stream invade, each wind, each emerald sheaf.
Where’er She walks, She by her gaze enstarred
Brings warmth before due season in her arms;
Love’s kindled in her look and falls in showers;
At her sweet smile or at her sweet regard
The grass grows green and colours paint the flowers,
The sky is clear, the sea is locked in calms.

From: Lind, L. R. (ed.), Lyric Poetry of the Italian Renaissance: An Anthology with Verse Translations, 1964, Yale University Press: New Haven and London, p. 215.

Date: 15th century (original in Italian); 1951 (translation in English)

By: Matteo Maria Boiardo (1441-1494)

Translated by: Irwin Peter Russell (1921-2003)

Monday, 6 March 2017

Credo for a Certain Mood by Arthur Alexander (Lex) Banning

Heart, rest you lonely;
mind, be you still;
in words, in words only
set all my skill.

Longing, contend not
where the body repels;
discontent, rend not
my quiet with your spells.

Wit, do you fashion
a sword against fate,
imprison my passion
and keep close the gate.

For I, who walk coldly,
and always alone,
can only go boldly
if heart be as stone,

and mind be quiescent,
and feelings be numb,
and wit recrudescent,
while passion is dumb.

From: Banning, Lex, Everyman His Own Hamlet: Selected Poems, 1951, Futurian Press: Sydney, p. 9.

Date: 1951

By: Arthur Alexander (Lex) Banning (1921-1965)

Monday, 7 April 2014

The Prodigal by Elizabeth Bishop

The brown enormous odor he lived by
was too close, with its breathing and thick hair,
for him to judge. The floor was rotten; the sty
was plastered halfway up with glass-smooth dung.
Light-lashed, self-righteous, above moving snouts,
the pigs’ eyes followed him, a cheerful stare–
even to the sow that always ate her young–
till, sickening, he leaned to scratch her head.
But sometimes mornings after drinking bouts
(he hid the pints behind the two-by-fours),
the sunrise glazed the barnyard mud with red
the burning puddles seemed to reassure.
And then he thought he almost might endure
his exile yet another year or more.

But evenings the first star came to warn.
The farmer whom he worked for came at dark
to shut the cows and horses in the barn
beneath their overhanging clouds of hay,
with pitchforks, faint forked lightnings, catching light,
safe and companionable as in the Ark.
The pigs stuck out their little feet and snored.
The lantern–like the sun, going away–
laid on the mud a pacing aureole.
Carrying a bucket along a slimy board,
he felt the bats’ uncertain staggering flight,
his shuddering insights, beyond his control,
touching him. But it took him a long time
finally to make up his mind to go home.


Date: 1951

By: Elizabeth Bishop (1911-1979)

Saturday, 29 October 2011

Do Not Go Gentle Into That Good Night by Dylan Thomas

Do not go gentle into that good night,
Old age should burn and rave at close of day;
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

Though wise men at their end know dark is right,
Because their words had forked no lightning they
Do not go gentle into that good night.

Good men, the last wave by, crying how bright
Their frail deeds might have danced in a green bay,
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

Wild men who caught and sang the sun in flight,
And learn, too late, they grieved it on its way,
Do not go gentle into that good night.

Grave men, near death, who see with blinding sight
Blind eyes could blaze like meteors and be gay,
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

And you, my father, there on the sad height,
Curse, bless, me now with your fierce tears, I pray.
Do not go gentle into that good night.
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.


Date: 1951

By: Dylan Thomas (1914-1953)