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Showing posts from March, 2012

Evolution or God?

Each in his own Tongue

A fire-mist and a planet, A crystal and a cell, A jelly-fish and a saurian, And caves where the cave-men dwell; Then a sense of law and beauty And a face turned from the clod, -- Some call it Evolution, And others call it God. A haze on the far horizon, The infinite, tender sky, The ripe, rich tint of the cornfields, And the wild geese sailing high; And all over upland and lowland The charm of the golden-rod, -- Some of us call it Autumn, And others call it God. Like tides on a crescent sea-beach, When the moon is new and thin, Into our hearts high yearnings Come welling and surging in: Come from the mystic ocean, Whose rim no foot has trod, -- Some of us call it Longing, And others call it God. A picket frozen on duty, A mother starved for her brood, Socrates drinking the hemlock, And Jesus on the rood; And millions who, humble and nameless, The straight, hard pathway pl…

Guy De Maupassant's In The Spring

In The Spring
Guy De Maupassant                 

With the first day of spring, when the awakening earth puts on its garment of green, and the warm, fragrant air fans our faces and fills our lungs and appears even to penetrate to our hearts, we experience a vague, undefined longing for freedom, for happiness, a desire to run, to wander aimlessly, to breathe in the spring. The previous winter having been unusually severe, this spring feeling was like a form of intoxication in May, as if there were an overabundant supply of sap.

One morning on waking I saw from my window the blue sky glowing in the sun above the neighboring houses. The canaries hanging in the windows were singing loudly, and so were the servants on every floor; a cheerful noise rose up from the streets, and I went out, my spirits as bright as the day, to go--I did not exactly know where. Everybody I met seemed to be smiling; an air of happiness appeared to pervade everything in the warm light of returning spring. O…

Robert W. Kimsey, Georgia Poet

I recently met Robert W. Kimsey, a poet who takes much of his inspiration from the Blue Ridge Mountains of Georgia where he lives in a log cabin and enjoys birding and fly-fishing.

Here are two poems by Robert W. Kimsey. You can read more at his blog Writing on the Ridge.


Shifty eyed rascal
Looking over your shoulder
Your reputation follows

Keeps getting closer
I hear you crying at night
Lamenting your shameful life Storm

Aspen leaves turn up
Elk move to sheltered valley
Wind screams through high pine branches

The storm closes in
A wolf pounding at the door
I dream of you beside me

Norman MacCaig "Of You"

Of You

When the little devil, panic, begins to grin and jump about in my heart, in my brain, in my muscles, I am shown the path I had lost in the mountainy mist.

I'm writing of you.

When the pain that will kill me is about to be unbearable, a cool hand puts a tablet on my tongue and the pain dwindles away and vanishes.

I'm writing of you.

There are fires to be suffered, the blaze of cruelty, the smoulder of inextinguishable longing, even the gentle candle flame of peace that burns too. I suffer them.  I survive.

I'm writing of you.

--Norman MacCaig

Guide Me O Thou Great Redeemer

Here are the words to that great Anglican hymn - "Guide Me O Thou Great Redeemer" - sung at the wedding of Prince William and Kate.  Hear it sung here at YouTube.

Guide me, O thou great redeemer,

Pilgrim through this barren land;

I am weak, but thou art mighty,

Hold me with thy powerful hand;

Bread of heaven, bread of heaven

Feed me till I want no more;

Feed me till I want no more.

Open now the crystal fountain

Whence the healing stream doth flow;

Let the fire and cloudy pillar

Lead me all my journey through:

Strong deliverer, strong deliverer;

Be thou still my strength and shield;

Be thou still my strength and shield.

When I tread the verge of Jordan,

Bid my anxious fears subside;

Death of death, and hell's destruction

Land me safe on Canaan's side:

Songs of praises, songs of praises,

I will ever give to thee;

I will ever give to thee.

Whitman's "Song of Myself"

I consider this poem a perfect example of Transcendental Humanism. In the later editions, Song of Myself opens "I celebrate myself, and I sing myself." The "I sing myself" was added later; it doesn't appear in the first edition.

Leaves of Grass, Section 14, Poem 6

A child said, "What is the grass?" fetching it to me with full hands; How could I answer the child? I do not know what it is, any more than he.
I guess it must be the flag of my disposition, out of hopeful green stuff woven. Or I guess it is the handkerchief of the Lord, A scented gift and remembrancer, designedly dropt, Bearing the owner's name someway in the corners, that we may see and remark, and say, "Whose?" Or I guess the grass is itself a child, the produced babe of the vegetation. Or I guess it is a uniform hieroglyphic; And it means, Sprouting alike in broad zones and narrow zones, Growing among black folks as among white; Kanuck, Tuckahoe, Co…

Wynken, Blynken, and Nod

A Dutch Lullaby Wynken, Blynken, and Nod one night Sailed off in a wooden shoe,-- Sailed on a river of crystal light Into a sea of dew. "Where are you going, and what do you wish?" The old moon asked the three. "We have come to fish for the herring fish That live in this beautiful sea; Nets of silver and gold have we!" Said Wynken, Blynken, and Nod. The old moon laughed and sang a song, As they rocked in the wooden shoe; And the wind that sped them all night long Ruffled the waves of dew. The little stars were the herring fish That lived in the beautiful sea-- "Now cast your nets wherever you wish,-- Never afeared are we!" So cried the stars to the fishermen three, Wynken, Blynken, And Nod. All night long their nets they threw To the stars…