Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Macbeth, Act IV, Scene I [Round about the cauldron go]

Macbeth, Act IV, Scene I [Round about the cauldron go]

The three witches, casting a spell

Round about the cauldron go;
In the poison'd entrails throw.
Toad, that under cold stone
Days and nights hast thirty one
Swelter'd venom sleeping got,
Boil thou first i' the charmed pot.

        Double, double toil and trouble;
        Fire burn and cauldron bubble.

Fillet of a fenny snake,
In the cauldron boil and bake;
Eye of newt, and toe of frog,
Wool of bat, and tongue of dog,
Adder's fork, and blind-worm's sting,
Lizard's leg, and howlet's wing,
For a charm of powerful trouble,
Like a hell-broth boil and bubble.

         Double, double toil and trouble;
         Fire burn and cauldron bubble.

Scale of dragon, tooth of wolf,
Witches' mummy, maw and gulf
Of the ravin'd salt-sea shark,
Root of hemlock digg'd i' the dark,
Liver of blaspheming Jew,
Gall of goat, and slips of yew
Sliver'd in the moon's eclipse,
Nose of Turk, and Tartar's lips,
Finger of birth-strangled babe
Ditch-deliver'd by a drab,
Make the gruel thick and slab:
Add thereto a tiger's chaudron,
For the ingredients of our cauldron.

          Double, double toil and trouble
          Fire burn and cauldron bubble.


Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Halloween Poems

Poets.org: Halloween poems (See right of page)

Sample: Theme in Yellow by Carl Sandburg

I spot the hills
With yellow balls in autumn.
I light the prairie cornfields
Orange and tawny gold clusters
And I am called pumpkins.
On the last of October
When dusk is fallen
Children join hands
And circle round me
Singing ghost songs
And love to the harvest moon;
I am a jack-o'-lantern
With terrible teeth
And the children know I am fooling

Monday, October 29, 2012

"Autumn" and "I Am" by John Clare

Autumn by John Clare

      1
I love the fitfull gusts that shakes
 The casement all the day
And from the mossy elm tree takes
 The faded leaf away
Twirling it by the window-pane
With thousand others down the lane.

      2
I love to see the shaking twig
 Dance till the shut of eve
The sparrow on the cottage rig
 Whose chirp would make believe

That spring was just now flirting by
In summers lap with flowers to lie.

      3
I love to see the cottage smoke
 Curl upwards through the naked trees
The pigeons nestled round the coat
 On dull November days like these
The cock upon the dung-hill crowing
The mill sails on the heath agoing.

      4
The feather from the ravens breast
 Falls on the stubble lea
The acorns near the old crows nest
 Fall pattering down the tree
The grunting pigs that wait for all
Scramble and hurry where they fall.

I Am

I am: yet what I am none cares or knows
     My friends forsake me like a memory lost,
I am the self-consumer of my woes--
     They rise and vanish in oblivious host,
Like shadows in love's frenzied, stifled throes--
And yet I am, and live--like vapors tossed
Into the nothingness of scorn and noise,
     Into the living sea of waking dreams,
Where there is neither sense of life or joys,
     But the vast shipwreck of my life's esteems;
Even the dearest, that I love the best,
Are strange--nay, rather stranger than the rest.
I long for scenes, where man hath never trod,
     A place where woman never smiled or wept--
There to abide with my Creator, God,
     And sleep as I in childhood sweetly slept,
Untroubling, and untroubled where I lie,
The grass below--above the vaulted sky

Friday, October 26, 2012

The Truth

The Truth by Ronald Wallace

for Amy

Her breast cancer, she said,
had metastasized to her liver;
she was going to die, and
soon. She said it made her
sad. I didn't know her well.
We were co-workers and
I liked her, but
what do you say when someone
actually answers the question
how are you?
with the unvarnished truth:
Not well, she said. I haven't
long to live. And should I
have said Oh you will! Should I
have smoothed it over
with the syrup of nervousness,
or done what I did
which was to
talk about terror and anger,
the unfairness and the lie,
to take the truth at face value?
No, she was just sad, she said.
She had her faith, she said,
and started to cry. And only then
did I see what she needed from me
was miracle, a simple belief
in miracle, and if that was varnish,
well, it would bring the grain
of the truth out, would save it
from wear and weather.
It would make the truth
almost shine.

"The Truth" by Ronald Wallace © University of Pittsburgh Press, 2003.

Sunday, October 21, 2012

Channel Firing Thomas Hardy

Channel Firing by Thomas Hardy -(1840-1928)

That night your great guns, unawares,
Shook all our coffins as we lay,
And broke the chancel window-squares,
We thought it was the Judgement-day

And sat upright. While drearisome
Arose the howl of wakened hounds:
The mouse let fall the altar-crumb,
The worms drew back into their mounds,

The glebe-cow drooled. Till God called, `No;
It's gunnery practice out at sea
Just as before you went below;
The world is as it used to be:

'All nations striving strong to make
Red war yet redder. Mad as hatters
They do no more for Christ├ęs sake
Than you that are helpless in such matters.

'That this is not the judgement-hour
For some of them's a blessed thing,
For if it were they'd have to scour
Hell's floor for so much threatening...

'Ha, ha. It will be warmer when
I blow the trumpet (if indeed
I ever do; for you are men,
And rest eternal sorely need).'

So down we lay again. 'I wonder,
Will the world ever saner be,'
Said one, 'than when He sent us under
In our indifferent century!'

And many a skeleton shook his head.
'Instead of preaching forty year,'
My neighbour Parson Thirdly said,
'I wish I had stuck to pipes and beer.'

Again the guns disturbed the hour,
Roaring their readiness to avenge,
As far inland as Stourton Tower,
And Camelot, and starlit Stonehenge.

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Autumnal - Stanley Plumly

Autumnal by Stanley Plumly 

Not long before she died my mother told me
that her one regret was never to have traveled
and that since she had just read about it
or somewhere that reminded her from sometime
Venice was the place she would have gone to
and might still in her haunting of the afterlife.
She had already questioned God in heaven
and the heavy Bible verses she was taught
and now saw death as her last chance to live,
her last chance to spend the green-gold leaf
pressed into books each October on her birthday.
She wept, she understood the innocence of dying.
And here she was propped up against her pillow
the way she finally would be in her coffin
with her eyeglasses held between the light
and open page. She wanted me to hear the article
that said that Venice would be filled like all
Italy that season and that Venice in particular
was vulnerable and small, weighted with the souls
of travelers, and that in the Grand Canal
rivers of dark waters moved.—Would
there be space?—It said, salotto citta,
that Venice was a city the size of drawing rooms,
lit with the flowers of funerals and weddings.

"Autumnal" by Stanley Plumly, from Old Heart: Poems. © W. W. Norton & Company, 2007.

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Mary Oliver - A Thousand Mornings

A THOUSAND MORNINGS

All night my heart makes its way
however it can over the rough ground
of uncertainties, but only until night
meets and then is overwhelmed by
morning, the light deepening, the
wind easing and just waiting, as I
too wait (and when have I ever been
disappointed?) for redbird to sing.

From A Thousand Mornings, by Mary Oliver

Saturday, October 13, 2012

God's World

God's World by Edna St. Vincent Millay

O world, I cannot hold thee close enough!
Thy winds, thy wide grey skies!
Thy mists that roll and rise!
Thy woods, this autumn day, that ache and sag
And all but cry with colour! That gaunt crag
To crush! To lift the lean of that black bluff!
World, World, I cannot get thee close enough!
Long have I known a glory in it all,
But never knew I this;
Here such a passion is
As stretcheth me apart. Lord, I do fear
Thou'st made the world too beautiful this year.
My soul is all but out of me, let fall
No burning leaf; prithee, let no bird call.

From Poem A Day

Saturday, October 6, 2012

I'm nobody - Emily Dickinson - Sung by Efrat Ben Zur



I’m nobody! Who are you?
Are you nobody, too?
Then there’s a pair of us — don’t tell!
They’d banish us, you know.

How dreary to be somebody!
How public, like a frog
To tell your name the livelong day
To an admiring bog!

anyone lived in a pretty how town

anyone lived in a pretty how town - by E. E. Cummings

anyone lived in a pretty how town
(with up so floating many bells down)
spring summer autumn winter
he sang his didn't he danced his did

Women and men(both little and small)
cared for anyone not at all
they sowed their isn't they reaped their same
sun moon stars rain

children guessed(but only a few
and down they forgot as up they grew
autumn winter spring summer)
that noone loved him more by more

when by now and tree by leaf
she laughed his joy she cried his grief
bird by snow and stir by still
anyone's any was all to her

someones married their everyones
laughed their cryings and did their dance
(sleep wake hope and then)they
said their nevers they slept their dream

stars rain sun moon
(and only the snow can begin to explain
how children are apt to forget to remember
with up so floating many bells down)

one day anyone died i guess
(and noone stooped to kiss his face)
busy folk buried them side by side
little by little and was by was

all by all and deep by deep
and more by more they dream their sleep
noone and anyone earth by april
wish by spirit and if by yes.

Women and men(both dong and ding)
summer autumn winter spring
reaped their sowing and went their came
sun moon stars rain

Thursday, October 4, 2012

The Escaped Gorilla

The Escaped Gorilla by David Wagoner 

When he walked out in the park that early evening
just before closing time, he didn't take
the nearest blonde in one arm and climb a tree
to wait for the camera crews. He didn't savage
anyone in uniform, upend cars
or beat his chest or scream, and nobody screamed
when they found him hiding behind the holly hedge
by the zoo office where he waited for someone

to take him by the hand and walk with him
around two corners and along a pathway
through the one door that wasn't supposed to be open
and back to the oblong place with the hard sky
where all of his unbreakable toys were waiting
to be broken, with the wall he could see through,
but not as far as the place he almost remembered,
which was too far away to be anywhere.

"The Escaped Gorilla" by David Wagoner, from A Map of the Night. © University of Illinois Press, 2008

Thanks to The Writers Almanac

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

What is Divinity by Wallace Stevens

What is Divinity by Wallace Stevens

What is divinity if it can come
Only in silent shadows and in dreams?
Shall she not find in comforts of the sun,
In pungent fruit and bright, green wings, or else
In any balm or beauty of the earth,
Things to be cherished like the thought of heaven?
Divinity must live within herself:
Passions of rain, or moods in falling snow;
Grievings in loneliness, or unsubdued
Elations when the forest blooms; gusty
Emotions on wet roads on autumn nights;
All pleasures and all pains, remembering
The bough of summer and the winter branch,
These are the measures destined for her soul.

"What is Divinity" by Wallace Stevens, from The Collected Poems of Wallace Stevens. © Alfred A. Knopf, 1990. Thanks to the Writers Almanac