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Poem for the Day

Posted: 16 May 2014

Roch the wind in the clear day’s dawin
Blaws the cloods heelster-gowdie ow’r the bay
But there’s mair nor a roch wind blawin
Through the great glen o the warld the day.
It’s a thocht that will gar oor rottans
A’ they rogues that gang gallus, fresh and gay -
Tak the ro...ad and seek ither loanins
For their ill ploys, tae sport and play

Nae mair will the bonnie callants
Mairch tae war when oor braggarts crousely craw,
Nor wee weans frae pit-heid and clachan
Mourn the ships sailin doon the Broomielaw.
Broken faimlies in lands we’ve herriet
Will curse Scotland the Brave nae mair, nae mair;
Black and white, ane til ither mairriet
Mak the vile barracks o their maisters bare

So come all ye at hame wi Freedom,
Never heed whit the hoodies croak for doom
In your hoose a' the bairns o Adam
Can find breid, barley-bree and painted room.
When MacLean meets wi’s freens in Springburn
A' the roses and geans will turn tae bloom,
And a black boy frae yont Nyanga
Dings the fell gallows o the burghers doon.

The Freedom Come All Ye
Hamish Henderson

Poem for the Day

Posted: 15 May 2014

A child 's a plaything for an hour;
Its pretty tricks we try
For that or for a longer space—
Then tire, and lay it by.

But I knew one that to itself
All seasons could control;
That would have mock'd the sense of pain ...
Out of a grievèd soul.

Thou straggler into loving arms,
Young climber-up of knees,
When I forget thy thousand ways
Then life and all shall cease.

A Child
Mary Lamb

Poem for the Day

Posted: 14 May 2014

Some say love's a little boy,
And some say it's a bird,
Some say it makes the world go around,
Some say that's absurd,
And when I asked the man next-door,
Who looked as if he knew,
His wife got very cross indeed,
And said it wouldn't do....

Does it look like a pair of pyjamas,
Or the ham in a temperance hotel?
Does its odour remind one of llamas,
Or has it a comforting smell?
Is it prickly to touch as a hedge is,
Or soft as eiderdown fluff?
Is it sharp or quite smooth at the edges?
O tell me the truth about love.

Our history books refer to it
In cryptic little notes,
It's quite a common topic on
The Transatlantic boats;
I've found the subject mentioned in
Accounts of suicides,
And even seen it scribbled on
The backs of railway guides.

Does it howl like a hungry Alsatian,
Or boom like a military band?
Could one give a first-rate imitation
On a saw or a Steinway Grand?
Is its singing at parties a riot?
Does it only like Classical stuff?
Will it stop when one wants to be quiet?
O tell me the truth about love.

I looked inside the summer-house;
It wasn't over there;
I tried the Thames at Maidenhead,
And Brighton's bracing air.
I don't know what the blackbird sang,
Or what the tulip said;
But it wasn't in the chicken-run,
Or underneath the bed.

Can it pull extraordinary faces?
Is it usually sick on a swing?
Does it spend all its time at the races,
or fiddling with pieces of string?
Has it views of its own about money?
Does it think Patriotism enough?
Are its stories vulgar but funny?
O tell me the truth about love.

When it comes, will it come without warning
Just as I'm picking my nose?
Will it knock on my door in the morning,
Or tread in the bus on my toes?
Will it come like a change in the weather?
Will its greeting be courteous or rough?
Will it alter my life altogether?
O tell me the truth about love.

O Tell Me The Truth About Love
W H Auden

Poem for the Day

Posted: 13 May 2014

Welcome, old friend! These many years
Have we lived door by door;
The fates have laid aside their shears
Perhaps for some few more.

I was indocile at an age
When better boys were taught, ...
But thou at length hast made me sage,
If I am sage in aught.

Little I know from other men,
Too little they know from me,
But thou hast pointed well the pen
That writes these lines to thee.

Thanks for expelling Fear and Hope,
One vile, the other vain;
One's scourge, the other's telescope,
I shall not see again.

Rather what lies before my feet
My notice shall engage--
He who hath braved Youth's dizzy heat
Dreads not the frost of Age.

To Age
Walter Savage Landor

Poem for the Day

Posted: 12 May 2014

Into the street the Piper stept,
Smiling first a little smile,
As if he knew what magic slept
In his quiet pipe the while;
Then, like a musical adept,
To blow the pipe his lips he wrinkled,
And green and blue his sharp eyes twinkled,
Like a candle-flame where salt is sprinkled; ...
And ere three shrill notes the pipe uttered,
You heard as if an army muttered;
And the muttering grew to a grumbling;
And the grumbling grew to a mighty rumbling;
And out of the houses the rats came tumbling.
Great rats, small rats, lean rats, brawny rats,
Brown rats, black rats, gray rats, tawny rats,
Grave old plodders, gay young friskers,
Fathers, mothers, uncles, cousins,
Cocking tails and pricking whiskers,
Families by tens and dozens,
Brothers, sisters, husbands, wives--
Followed the Piper for their lives.
From street to street he piped advancing,
And step for step they followed dancing,
Until they came to the river Weser
Wherein all plunged and perished!
Save one who, stout as Julius Caesar,
Swam across and lived to carry
(As the manuscript he cherished)
To Rat-land home his commentary:
Which was, “At the first shrill notes of the pipe,
I heard a sound as of scraping tripe,
And putting apples, wondrous ripe,
Into a cider-press’s gripe:
And a moving away of pickle-tub-boards,
And a leaving ajar of conserve-cupboards,
And a drawing the corks of train-oil-flasks,
And a breaking the hoops of butter-casks:
And it seemed as if a voice
(Sweeter far than by harp or by psaltery
Is breathed) called out, ‘Oh rats, rejoice!
The world is grown to one vast dry-saltery!
So munch on, crunch on, take your nuncheon,
Breakfast, supper, dinner, luncheon!'
And just as a bulky sugar-puncheon,
All ready staved, like a great sun shone
Glorious scarce an inch before me,
Just as methought it said ‘Come bore me!'
I found the Weser rolling o’er me.”

from The Pied Piper of Hamelin
Robert Browning

266-270 of 841 blog entries

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