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Subject: Poetry rss

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Jage
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So, growing up I never really understood Poetry. I mean, I don't know.

Now, however, I feel like I can appreciate it more.

Anyone here want to post/discuss their favorite poems? I'm looking for a favorite currently.

I think I like some that tell a story, maybe that surprise the reader, and still provoke emotional themes.


Gold is for the mistress -- silver for the maid --
Copper for the craftsman cunning at his trade."
"Good!" said the Baron, sitting in his hall,
"But Iron -- Cold Iron -- is master of them all."

So he made rebellion 'gainst the King his liege,
Camped before his citadel and summoned it to siege.
"Nay!" said the cannoneer on the castle wall,
"But Iron -- Cold Iron -- shall be master of you all!"

Woe for the Baron and his knights so strong,
When the cruel cannon-balls laid 'em all along;
He was taken prisoner, he was cast in thrall,
And Iron -- Cold Iron -- was master of it all!

Yet his King spake kindly (ah, how kind a Lord!)
"What if I release thee now and give thee back thy sword?"
"Nay!" said the Baron, "mock not at my fall,
For Iron -- Cold Iron -- is master of men all."

"Tears are for the craven, prayers are for the clown --
Halters for the silly neck that cannot keep a crown."
"As my loss is grievous, so my hope is small,
For Iron -- Cold Iron -- must be master of men all!"

Yet his King made answer (few such Kings there be!)
"Here is Bread and here is Wine -- sit and sup with me.
Eat and drink in Mary's Name, the whiles I do recall
How Iron -- Cold Iron -- can be master of men all!"

He took the Wine and blessed it. He blessed and brake the Bread.
With His own Hands He served Them, and presently He said:
"See! These Hands they pierced with nails, outside My city wall,
Show Iron -- Cold Iron -- to be master of men all."

"Wounds are for the desperate, blows are for the strong.
Balm and oil for weary hearts all cut and bruised with wrong.
I forgive thy treason -- I redeem thy fall --
For Iron -- Cold Iron -- must be master of men all!"

"Crowns are for the valiant -- sceptres for the bold!
Thrones and powers for mighty men who dare to take and hold!"
"Nay!" said the Baron, kneeling in his hall,
"But Iron -- Cold Iron -- is master of men all!
Iron out of Calvary is master of men all!"

-Rudyard Kipling
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Joe Salamone
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Gold, silver, copper, iron . . . definitely a Euro pick-up-and-deliver poem.

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Goo
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This Is Just To Say

I have eaten
the plums
that were in
the icebox

and which
you were probably
saving
for breakfast

Forgive me
they were delicious
so sweet
and so cold

-William Carlos Williams
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Goo
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One thing I love about poetry is the efficiency. Not a word is wasted and most are doing double and triple duty.
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Jage
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Gelatinous Goo wrote:
One thing I love about poetry is the efficiency. Not a word is wasted and most are doing double and triple duty.


Something about the repetition of Iron -- Cold Iron makes me like that poem. Not sure why.
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Jage
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One thing I seem to find myself liking is story-poems, almost things that could be songs.

My favorite song (I find songs are often just poems in music form....at least the good ones) goes like this (although, I recommend just listening to it on youtube):

It's "The Fox, The Crow, and The Cookie" by mewithoutyou

Through mostly vacant streets, a baker from the outskirts of his town
Earned his living peddling sweets from the ragged cart he dragged around.
The clever fox crept close behind, kept an ever-watchful eye
For a chance to steal a ginger spice cake or a boysenberry pie.

Looking down was the hungry crow, "When the time is right, I'll strike
And condescend to the earth below and take whichever treat I'd like."
The moment the baker turned around to shoo the fox off from his cart,
The crow swooped down and snatched a shortbread cookie and a German chocolate tart.

Using most unfriendly words that the village children had not yet heard,
the baker shouted threats by canzonette to curse the crafty bird.
"You rotten wooden mixing spoon! Why you midnight winged racoon!
You better bring those pastries back, you no-good burned-black macaroon!"

The fox approached the tree where the bird was perched, delighted in his nest.
"Brother Crow, don't you remember me? It's your old friend Fox with a humble request.
If you could share just a modest piece, seeing as I distracted that awful man."
This failed to persuade the crow in the least, so the fox rethought his plan.

"Then if your lovely song would grace my ears, or to even hear you speak,
Would ease my pains and fears." The crow looked down with a candy in his beak.
"Your poems of wisdom, my good crow, what a paradise they bring!"
This flattery pleased the proud bird, so he opened his mouth and began to sing:

"Your subtle acclamation's true! Best to give praise where praise is due.
Every rook and jay in the Corvidae's been raving about me too.
They admire me, one and all. Must be the passion in my caw!
My slender bill known through the escadrille, my fierce commanding claw!"

I got a walnut brownie brain, and molasses in my veins,
Crushed graham cracker crust, my powdered sugared funnel cake cocaine.
Let the crescent cookie rise. These carob colored almond eyes
Will see my cashewed princess in the swirling marble sky.
Will rest upon the knee, where all the visions cease to be
A root beer float in our banana boat across the tapioca sea.
When letting all attachments go, is the only prayer we know,
May it be so, may it be so, may it be so, oh.

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Jage
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I like the line "powdered sugared funnel cake cocaine"
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Jage
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Gelatinous Goo wrote:
This Is Just To Say

I have eaten
the plums
that were in
the icebox

and which
you were probably
saving
for breakfast

Forgive me
they were delicious
so sweet
and so cold

-William Carlos Williams


I like the idea of this poem, but it always makes me feel kinda sad.
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George Buss
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Short-order Cook
by Jim Daniels


An average joe comes in
and orders thirty cheeseburgers and thirty fries.

I wait for him to pay before I start cooking.
He pays.
He ain't no average joe.

The grill is just big enough for ten rows of three.
I slap the burgers down
throw two buckets of fries in the deep frier
and they pop pop spit spit...
psss...
The counter girls laugh.
I concentrate.
It is the crucial point—
they are ready for the cheese:
my fingers shake as I tear off slices
toss them on the burgers/fries done/dump/
refill buckets/burgers ready/flip into buns/
beat that melting cheese/wrap burgers in plastic/
into paper bags/fries done/dump/fill thirty bags/
bring them to the counter/wipe sweat on sleeve
and smile at the counter girls.
I puff my chest out and bellow:
"Thirty cheeseburgers, thirty fries!"
They look at me funny.
I grab a handful of ice, toss it in my mouth
do a little dance and walk back to the grill.
Pressure, responsibility, success,
thirty cheeseburgers, thirty fries.
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Jage
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I like that poem. As someone who has worked as a short order cook, and enjoyed it, I can totally understand.
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Goo
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For a story poem, I like Browning's Childe Roland to the Dark Tower Came

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Goo
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This might be a better reading of Childe Roland:

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Greg
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I wrote this when I was in Jr. High. For some reason it has stuck with me through the years and it's meaning has changed over time. I'm sure it's derivative of something. It sounds like something from a nursery rhyme, and probably not worthy of the name 'poetry', but it is the first thing I thought of, and has showed me just how much the reader influences the meaning of words.

I saw a fly fly by today.
It landed there, then flew away.
Where it went ... I couldn't say.


When I wrote it it was about idleness and frippery. I mostly just liked how the words played together and didn't really invest much meaning into them.
In high school, when I thought about it, it was about insignificance and apathy.
Later it came to say something about the appreciation of the mundane.
Once I had kids it was about the importance of fleeting moments.

At this point, it has all kind of melded together and speaks of the transient nature of life and the world around us. You can't really take hold of events in life, you can only experience them, and when they are done, they're done and gone.

I still like how the words play.
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Some say the world will end in fire, Some say in ice. From what I’ve tasted of desire I hold with those who favor fire. But if it had to perish twice, I think I know enough of hate To say that for destruction ice Is also great And would suffice.
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I've had "Fire and Ice" by Robert Frost behind my überbadge for quite some time. Here is another favorite:

Limited


I AM riding on a limited express, one of the crack trains of the nation.
Hurtling across the prairie into blue haze and dark air go fifteen all-steel coaches holding a thousand people.
(All the coaches shall be scrap and rust and all the men and women laughing in the diners and sleepers shall pass to ashes.)
I ask a man in the smoker where he is going and he answers: "Omaha."

- Carl Sandburg
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Max DuBoff
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jageroxorz wrote:
Gelatinous Goo wrote:
This Is Just To Say

I have eaten
the plums
that were in
the icebox

and which
you were probably
saving
for breakfast

Forgive me
they were delicious
so sweet
and so cold

-William Carlos Williams


I like the idea of this poem, but it always makes me feel kinda sad.


I find Williams' poems to be very hit-or-miss. I appreciate the poet's skill, but for me, they miss.
 
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Max DuBoff
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Beowulf wrote:
I've had "Fire and Ice" by Robert Frost behind my überbadge for quite some time.


Good taste! Frost is probably my favorite 20th-century poet.

Beowulf wrote:
Here is another favorite:

Limited


I AM riding on a limited express, one of the crack trains of the nation.
Hurtling across the prairie into blue haze and dark air go fifteen all-steel coaches holding a thousand people.
(All the coaches shall be scrap and rust and all the men and women laughing in the diners and sleepers shall pass to ashes.)
I ask a man in the smoker where he is going and he answers: "Omaha."

- Carl Sandburg


Lots of love for modernist poets here...
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Max DuBoff
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I love poetry.


I'm a particular fan of British Romantic poetry. The themes, form, and style draw me in. I vastly prefer metered poetry as well; I "hear" meter if you know what I mean. As an amateur classicist, I also very much appreciate Greek and Roman poets and epic poetry.


If I had to choose, I'd say my favorite poem is "Kubla Khan" by Coleridge:

Samuel Taylor Coleridge wrote:
In Xanadu did Kubla Khan
A stately pleasure dome decree
Where Alph the sacred river ran
Through caverns measureless to man
Down to a sunless sea
So twice five miles of fertile ground
With walls and towers were girdled round;
And there were gardens bright with sinuous rills,
Where blossomed many an incense-bearing tree;
And here were forests ancient as the hills,
Enfolding sunny spots of greenery.

But oh! that deep romantic chasm which slanted
Down the green hill athwart a cedarn cover!
A savage place! as holy and enchanted
As e’er beneath a waning moon was haunted
By woman wailing for her demon-lover!
And from this chasm, with ceaseless turmoil seething,
As if this earth in fast thick pants were breathing,
A mighty fountain momently was forced:
Amid whose swift half-intermitted burst
Huge fragments vaulted like rebounding hail,
Or chaffy grain beneath the thresher’s flail:
And mid these dancing rocks at once and ever
It flung up momently the sacred river.
Five miles meandering with a mazy motion
Through wood and dale the sacred river ran,
Then reached the caverns measureless to man,
And sank in tumult to a lifeless ocean;
And ’mid this tumult Kubla heard from far
Ancestral voices prophesying war!
The shadow of the dome of pleasure
Floated midway on the waves;
Where was heard the mingled measure
From the fountain and the caves.
It was a miracle of rare device,
A sunny pleasure-dome with caves of ice!

A damsel with a dulcimer
In a vision once I saw:
It was an Abyssinian maid
And on her dulcimer she played,
Singing of Mount Abora.
Could I revive within me
Her symphony and song,
To such a deep delight ’twould win me,
That with music loud and long,
I would build that dome in air,
That sunny dome! those caves of ice!
And all who heard should see them there,
And all should cry, Beware! Beware!
His flashing eyes, his floating hair!
Weave a circle round him thrice,
And close your eyes with holy dread
For he on honey-dew hath fed,
And drunk the milk of Paradise.


For those who aren't aware, the tale (told by Coleridge himself) that supposedly explains its writing is fantastic, even if it's of dubious authenticity.

Oh, and Rush has an awesome song based on it:
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Ah, the Brits.. they did have fun with their poetry. from a friendly competition a year after Kubla Khan come my favorite pair of poems:

Quote:
"Ozymandias" by Percy Bysshe Shelly

I met a traveller from an antique land
Who said: "Two vast and trunkless legs of stone
Stand 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 them and the heart that fed:
And on the pedestal these words appear:
'My name is Ozymandias, king of kings:
Look on my works, ye Mighty, and despair!'
Nothing beside remains. Round the decay
Of that colossal wreck, boundless and bare
The lone and level sands stretch far away."

versus
Quote:

"On A Stupendous Leg of Granite, Discovered Standing by Itself in the Deserts of Egypt, with the Inscription Inserted Below" by Horace Smith (who wins just for title alone)

In Egypt's sandy silence, all alone,
Stands a gigantic Leg, which far off throws
The only shadow that the Desert knows:—
"I am great OZYMANDIAS," saith the stone,
"The King of Kings; this mighty City shows
"The wonders of my hand."— The City's gone,—
Nought but the Leg remaining to disclose
The site of this forgotten Babylon.

We wonder,—and some Hunter may express
Wonder like ours, when thro' the wilderness
Where London stood, holding the Wolf in chace,
He meets some fragment huge, and stops to guess
What powerful but unrecorded race
Once dwelt in that annihilated place.


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Max DuBoff
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nyriv wrote:
Ah, the Brits.. they did have fun with their poetry. from a friendly competition a year after Kubla Khan come my favorite pair of poems:

Quote:
"Ozymandias" by Percy Bysshe Shelly

I met a traveller from an antique land
Who said: "Two vast and trunkless legs of stone
Stand 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 them and the heart that fed:
And on the pedestal these words appear:
'My name is Ozymandias, king of kings:
Look on my works, ye Mighty, and despair!'
Nothing beside remains. Round the decay
Of that colossal wreck, boundless and bare
The lone and level sands stretch far away."

versus
Quote:

"On A Stupendous Leg of Granite, Discovered Standing by Itself in the Deserts of Egypt, with the Inscription Inserted Below" by Horace Smith (who wins just for title alone)

In Egypt's sandy silence, all alone,
Stands a gigantic Leg, which far off throws
The only shadow that the Desert knows:—
"I am great OZYMANDIAS," saith the stone,
"The King of Kings; this mighty City shows
"The wonders of my hand."— The City's gone,—
Nought but the Leg remaining to disclose
The site of this forgotten Babylon.

We wonder,—and some Hunter may express
Wonder like ours, when thro' the wilderness
Where London stood, holding the Wolf in chace,
He meets some fragment huge, and stops to guess
What powerful but unrecorded race
Once dwelt in that annihilated place.




Good picks! I'm a big fan of Ozymandias as well; I was of course familiar with Smith's related version but preferred Shelley's setup and descriptive word choice more. Percy's sister definitely gets too much of the attention.
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Some say the world will end in fire, Some say in ice. From what I’ve tasted of desire I hold with those who favor fire. But if it had to perish twice, I think I know enough of hate To say that for destruction ice Is also great And would suffice.
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nyriv wrote:
Ah, the Brits.. they did have fun with their poetry. from a friendly competition a year after Kubla Khan come my favorite pair of poems:

Quote:
"Ozymandias" by Percy Bysshe Shelly

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I love ozymandius. I may have been known to tape it to all sorts of plaques and other "sponsor" elements.

I also love good haiku.

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I like "i thank You God" as well, by EE Cummings

i thank You God for most this amazing
day:for the leaping greenly spirits of trees
and a blue true dream of sky; and for everything
which is natural which is infinite which is yes

(i who have died am alive again today,
and this is the sun’s birthday; this is the birth
day of life and of love and wings: and of the gay
great happening illimitably earth)

how should tasting touching hearing seeing
breathing any–lifted from the no
of all nothing–human merely being
doubt unimaginable You?

(now the ears of my ears awake and
now the eyes of my eyes are opened)
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“Here is my secret. It's quite simple: One sees clearly only with the heart. Anything essential is invisible to the eyes.” ― Antoine de Saint-Exupéry, Petit Prince
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My First Noels

Cheap Enteman's Danishes bought
on outlet sale and
steaming kielbasa,
hand made by a butcher woman
with a lip full of hair and
Eastern Europe,
dominate my holiday memories.

He sits in one of two chairs:
One framed by picture window
Crowded with half dead plants
straining to find light
and life amidst the hoarded
paper and lottery losses;
The other chair guards
the bathroom door and
Television remote beside
dim lamp on a table
that I knew was there because
levitating chatchkeys are not
possible.

When his dupche is sore, he hides
in the 4x6 cell they called
a kitchen
filled
with pots of fresh and smoked;
Or makes his escape to
his secret life in
the basement followed
by shining lanterns of eyes
as my brother and I
alone of the seventeen
accompany his retreat to
boxes of war journals and other mysteries.

She sits with her back
to the pots and steam,
holding hands and court
with the children and theirs,
rising to move November's newspaper from
chair or
couch or
table.

She tells us
the bobka is
dry this year
the butter is
too salty
and the kielbasa
getting cold.
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