and why? Kipling IF Basically the ONLY one that isnt boring 0 Vote up! Mary Rose Sat on a pin Mary Rose 0 Vote up! Allen Ginsburg, A Supermarket in California Just because 0 Vote up! Ginsberg, even 0 Vote up! Ambulances 0 Vote up! I don't have one favourite but the brevity with which Larkin conveys huge feelings always astonishes me when I re-read 0 Vote up! Futility 0 Vote up! Also Lily Rosemary and the Jack of Hearts by Bob Dylan. Makes me smile for 6 straight minutes. 0 Vote up! The Waste Land, T.S. Eliot. Gentile or Jew. Consider Phlebas... 0 Vote up! Spike Milligan, The Ning Nang Nong Dr Seuss, The Sneeches 0 Vote up! Had I the heavens’ embroidered cloths, Enwrought with golden and silver light, The blue and the dim and the dark cloths Of night and light and the half-light, I would spread the cloths under your feet: But I, being poor, have only my dreams; I have spread my dreams under your feet; Tread softly because you tread on my dreams. 0 Vote up! washing sherry 0 Vote up! She kept her songs, they kept so little space, The covers pleased her: One bleached from lying in a sunny place, One marked in circles by a vase of water, One mended, when a tidy fit had seized her, And coloured, by her daughter - So they had waited, till, in widowhood She found them, looking for something else, and stood Relearning how each frank submissive chord Had ushered in Word after sprawling hyphenated word, And the unfailing sense of being young Spread out like a spring-woken tree, wherein That hidden freshness sung, That certainty of time laid up in store As when she played them first. But, even more, The glare of that much-mentionned brilliance, love, Broke out, to show Its bright incipience sailing above, Still promising to solve, and satisfy, And set unchangeably in order. So To pile them back, to cry, Was hard, without lamely admitting how It had not done so then, and could not now. 0 Vote up! Linda I agree with Larkin's exquisite economy. It may not be my favourite - the tone is darker than is good for the soul - but here is his finest example As Bad as a Mile Watching the shied core Striking the basket, skidding across the floor, Shows less and less of luck, and more and more Of failure spreading back up the arm Earlier and earlier, the unraised hand calm, The apple unbitten in the palm. 0 Vote up! It's so specific, I don't want to out myself. 0 Vote up! oh I love that one 0 Vote up! (the new contentment above) 0 Vote up! Elegy in a Country Churchyard The Listeners 0 Vote up! Als je goed om je heen kijkt zie je dat alles gekleurd is K.Schippers Translated: If you carefully look around you will see that everything has colour 0 Vote up! Threeepwood12 Oct 21 14:30 Reply | Report Also Lily Rosemary and the Jack of Hearts by Bob Dylan. Makes me smile for 6 straight minutes. heh. 0 Vote up! Marvell’s “To His Coy Mistress” Bob Dylan’s “Love Minus Zero/No Limits” Heine’s “Der Scheidende” Goethe’s “An vollen Buschelzweigen” Baudelaire’s “La Chevelure” 0 Vote up! I like that orange one 0 Vote up! Adlestrop The Whitsun Weddings Ulysses 0 Vote up! The Whitsun Weddings Perceiving Chatto darkly through the mirror of the third. Just enough time to settle hats and say "I nearly died" . Two great lines 0 Vote up! Lily, Rosemary and the Jack of Hearts is a good song, but I always thought it was rushed, ran too fast. Hurricane by Dylan is a similar song, but slower and better paced. And it had the superb violin lines running all through it. 0 Vote up! Sir Henry newbolts vitai lampada and William ernest henleys invictus. Both poems to drink brandy to and stare into the middle distance whilst feeding the ducks in the park stoically 0 Vote up! I love Larkin and always did. Though rereading them again on here in middle age is strangely unnerving. 0 Vote up! An arrow shower sent of of sight Somewhere becoming rain 0 Vote up! Sorry forgot this one: Come friendly bombs and fall on Slough! It isn't fit for humans now, There isn't grass to graze a cow. Swarm over, Death! Come, bombs and blow to smithereens Those air -conditioned, bright canteens, Tinned fruit, tinned meat, tinned milk, tinned beans, Tinned minds, tinned breath. Mess up the mess they call a town- A house for ninety-seven down And once a week a half a crown For twenty years. And get that man with double chin Who'll always cheat and always win, Who washes his repulsive skin In women's tears: And smash his desk of polished oak And smash his hands so used to stroke And stop his boring dirty joke And make him yell. But spare the bald young clerks who add The profits of the stinking cad; It's not their fault that they are mad, They've tasted Hell. It's not their fault they do not know The birdsong from the radio, It's not their fault they often go To Maidenhead And talk of sport and makes of cars In various bogus-Tudor bars And daren't look up and see the stars But belch instead. In labour-saving homes, with care Their wives frizz out peroxide hair And dry it in synthetic air And paint their nails. Come, friendly bombs and fall on Slough To get it ready for the plough. The cabbages are coming now; The earth exhales. 0 Vote up! Not my favourite, but the poem that reminds me that poets do something alchemical with words: it makes my stomach lurch every time - James Joyce, A Flower for my Daughter Frail the white rose and frail are Her hands that gave Whose soul is sere and paler Than time’s wan wave. Rosefrail and fair–yet frailest A wonder wild In gentle eyes thou veilest, My blueveined child. 0 Vote up! Not to mention Ecce Puer "Oh father forsaken, forgive your son". 0 Vote up! Betjemen's stuff always feels a bit trite, tea-and-biscuits, to me. He is such a slave to a simple rhythm and smartypants rhymes that it reads and sounds like a very good Year 9 effort. 0 Vote up! Joan Hunter-Dunne Stick it up your bum etc. 0 Vote up! Agreed he is the Harold Pinter of poetry, but sums up Slough perfectly. 0 Vote up! Not sure I read enough (any) poetry to have a favourite but I heard this again last week by John Cooper Clarke. I always liked it and it reminds me of Britain 2021 The bloody cops are bloody keen To bloody keep it bloody clean The bloody chief's a bloody swine Who bloody draws a bloody line At bloody fun and bloody games The bloody kids he bloody blames Are nowehere to be bloody found Anywhere in chicken town The bloody scene is bloody sad The bloody news is bloody bad The bloody weed is bloody turf The bloody speed is bloody surf The bloody folks are bloody daft Don't make me bloody laugh It bloody hurts to look around Everywhere in chicken town The bloody train is bloody late You bloody wait you bloody wait You're bloody lost and bloody found Stuck in fooking chicken town The bloody view is bloody vile For bloody miles and bloody miles The bloody babies bloody cry The bloody flowers bloody die The bloody food is bloody muck The bloody drains are bloody fooked The colour scheme is bloody brown Everywhere in chicken town The bloody pubs are bloody dull The bloody clubs are bloody full Of bloody girls and bloody guys With bloody murder in their eyes A bloody bloke is bloody stabbed Waiting for a bloody cab You bloody stay at bloody home The bloody neighbors bloody moan Keep the bloody racket down This is bloody chicken town The bloody pies are bloody old The bloody chips are bloody cold The bloody beer is bloody flat The bloody flats have bloody rats The bloody clocks are bloody wrong The bloody days are bloody long It bloody gets you bloody down Evidently chicken town The bloody train is bloody late You bloody wait you bloody wait You're bloody lost and bloody found Stuck in fooking chicken town 0 Vote up! 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. As a good reminder of hubris. Also: somewhere i have never travelled, gladly beyond any experience, your eyes have their silence: in your most frail gesture are things which enclose me, or which i cannot touch because they are too near your slightest look easily will unclose me though i have closed myself as fingers, you open always petal by petal myself as Spring opens (touching skilfully, mysteriously)her first rose or if your wish be to close me,i and my life will shut very beautifully, suddenly, as when the heart of this flower imagines the snow carefully everywhere descending; nothing which we are to perceive in this world equals the power of your intense fragility: whose texture compels me with the colour of its countries, rendering death and forever with each breathing (i do not know what it is about you that closes and opens; only something in me understands the voice of your eyes is deeper than all roses) nobody, not even the rain, has such small hands 0 Vote up! Ozymandias PERCY BYSSHE SHELLEY 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.” 0 Vote up! Snap! 0 Vote up! Interesting there are so many fans of the modernist period here. Some TS Eliot and even a lesser know morsel by Joyce! Along a similar theme, for me it’s The River Song by Ezra Pound. Either that or the poem at the end of Alice in Wonderland. I sent that poem, The Orange, to a friend once when he was feeling tepid and he texted me to say he’d just started crying on the tube. I texted him to say ‘I hope next time I see you in the pub you don’t try and drunkenly bumrape me, you gay’ 0 Vote up! Law Like Love W H Auden 0 Vote up! The ning nang nong. String. King John's Christmas. The King's breakfast. 0 Vote up! This has always been a favourite Dream Song 29 BY JOHN BERRYMAN There sat down, once, a thing on Henry’s heart so heavy, if he had a hundred years & more, & weeping, sleepless, in all them time Henry could not make good. Starts again always in Henry’s ears the little cough somewhere, an odour, a chime. And there is another thing he has in mind like a grave Sienese face a thousand years would fail to blur the still profiled reproach of. Ghastly, with open eyes, he attends, blind. All the bells say: too late. This is not for tears; thinking. But never did Henry, as he thought he did, end anyone and hacks her body up and hide the pieces, where they may be found. He knows: he went over everyone, & nobody’s missing. Often he reckons, in the dawn, them up. Nobody is ever missing. 0 Vote up! Dulce et Decorum Est. Just because. 0 Vote up! Stevie Smith not waving but drowning. 0 Vote up! Wallace Stevens - Sunday Morning Larkin - Church Going Donne - A Valediction Forbidding Mourning 0 Vote up! Nutting by Wordsworth. Or I Carry Your Heart by e e cummings. Or Mrs Midas by Carol Ann Duffy from her World’s Wife collection. Any of that collection actually… I can’t say why some poetry clings like dandelion seeds. Some just do… 0 Vote up! Another good ee Cummings poem, does love well. 0 Vote up! Seamus Heaney - BlackBerry Picking Late August, given heavy rain and sun For a full week, the blackberries would ripen. At first, just one, a glossy purple clot Among others, red, green, hard as a knot. You ate that first one and its flesh was sweet Like thickened wine: summer's blood was in it Leaving stains upon the tongue and lust for Picking. Then red ones inked up and that hunger Sent us out with milk cans, pea tins, jam-pots Where briars scratched and wet grass bleached our boots. Round hayfields, cornfields and potato-drills We trekked and picked until the cans were full, Until the tinkling bottom had been covered With green ones, and on top big dark blobs burned Like a plate of eyes. Our hands were peppered With thorn pricks, our palms sticky as Bluebeard's. We hoarded the fresh berries in the byre. But when the bath was filled we found a fur, A rat-grey fungus, glutting on our cache. The juice was stinking too. Once off the bush The fruit fermented, the sweet flesh would turn sour. I always felt like crying. It wasn't fair That all the lovely canfuls smelt of rot. Each year I hoped they'd keep, knew they would not. 0 Vote up! In my old griefs, and with my childhood’s faith. I love thee with a love I seemed to lose With my lost saints. I love thee with the breath, Smiles, tears, of all my life; and, if God choose, I shall but love thee better after death. ...it makes me wonder if I will ever discover faith again. 0 Vote up! Desolation Row (I’m counting it as a poem anyway) 0 Vote up! It makes you blind, it does you in It makes you think you're pretty tough It makes you prone to crime and sin It makes you say things off the cuff It's very small and made of glass And grossly over-advertised It turns a genius into an ass And makes a fool think he is wise It could make you regret your birth Or turn cartwheels in your best suit It costs a lot more than it's worth And yet there is no substitute They keep it on a higher shelf The older and more pure it grows It has no color in itself But it can make you see rainbows You can find it on the Bowery Or you can find it at Elaine's It makes your words more flowery It makes the sun shine, makes it rain You just get out what they put in And they never put in enough Love is like a bottle of gin But a bottle of gin is not like love 0 Vote up! Desolation Row is good. So is Love Minus Zero/No Limit My love she speaks like silence, Without ideals or violence, She doesn't have to say she's faithful, Yet she's true, like ice, like fire. People carry roses, Make promises by the hours, My love she laughs like the flowers, Valentines can't buy her. In the dime stores and bus stations, People talk of situations, Read books, repeat quotations, Draw conclusions on the wall. Some speak of the future, My love she speaks softly, She knows there's no success like failure And that failure's no success at all. The cloak and dagger dangles, Madams light the candles. In ceremonies of the horsemen, Even the pawn must hold a grudge. Statues made of match sticks, Crumble into one another, My love winks, she does not bother, She knows too much to argue or to judge. The bridge at midnight trembles, The country doctor rambles, Bankers' nieces seek perfection, Expecting all the gifts that wise men bring. The wind howls like a hammer, The night blows cold and rainy, My love she's like some raven At my window with a broken wing. 0 Vote up! Ah, missed the why bit. To His Coy Mistress because it’s filth. Love Minus Zero/No Limit because it’s a brilliant example of Petrarchan reconciliation of opposites and meditation on the lady he loves (Sara here I think) which he appears to really mean (which is not always the case with Dylan). It’s also a weirdly near match to Desolation Row metrically (and when he was playing both on his tours around 2002/3 it was frequently difficult to tell from the musical intro and tune which he was playing). Heine’s Der Scheidende because it’s a masterpiece of irony and self-ironisation, mordantly funny and bleakly insightful into the human condition. Goethe’s An vollen Buschelzweigen because it’s both a beautiful evocation of nature and brilliantly pervy filth. La Chevelure because it’s filth (hmmm, spotting a pattern here). 0 Vote up! That’s not the only reason you can’t tell which song dylan is playing 0 Vote up! Ole's at the wheel 0 Vote up! Heh. Well, sure, he messes around with them and reinvents them, Trevor. Not sure what else you mean by that. 0 Vote up! Hello Commuter, on your way to work, I’m going to call yours Captain Bird’s Eye, Because it looks like it’s wearing a polo neck and winking at me. You’re welcome, I just named your penis. Hello Train Driver, who’s just nipped in for a piss, I’m going to call yours Mrs. Fernsby, My old geography teacher, Because you’re small and wrinkly And have a birthmark down the side of your shaft. You’re welcome, I just named your penis. Hello Police Officer, who’s just been sent to the toilets Because they’ve had reports of someone naming people’s penises. You can’t arrest me for naming strangers’ cocks. Oh, you can? I didn’t know that. Oh great, now I’m electronically tagged again 0 Vote up! Smile at us, pay us, pass us; but do not quite forget, For we are the people of England, that never has spoken yet. There is many a fat farmer that drinks less cheerfully, There is many a free French peasant who is richer and sadder than we. There are no folk in the whole world so helpless or so wise. There is hunger in our bellies, there is laughter in our eyes; You laugh at us and love us, both mugs and eyes are wet: Only you do not know us. For we have not spoken yet. The fine French kings came over in a flutter of flags and dames. We liked their smiles and battles, but we never could say their names. The blood ran red to Bosworth and the high French lords went down; There was naught but a naked people under a naked crown. And the eyes of the King's Servants turned terribly every way, And the gold of the King's Servants rose higher every day. They burnt the homes of the shaven men, that had been quaint and kind, Till there was no bed in a monk's house, nor food that man could find. The inns of God where no man paid, that were the wall of the weak, The King's Servants ate them all. And still we did not speak. And the face of the King's Servants grew greater than the King: He tricked them, and they trapped him, and stood round him in a ring. The new grave lords closed round him, that had eaten the abbey's fruits, And the men of the new religion, with their Bibles in their boots, We saw their shoulders moving, to menace or discuss, And some were pure and some were vile; but none took heed of us. We saw the King as they killed him, and his face was proud and pale; And a few men talked of freedom, while England talked of ale. A war that we understood not came over the world and woke Americans, Frenchmen, Irish; but we knew not the things they spoke. They talked about rights and nature and peace and the people's reign: And the squires, our masters, bade us fight; and never scorned us again. Weak if we be for ever, could none condemn us then; Men called us serfs and drudges; men knew that we were men. In foam and flame at Trafalgar, on Albuera plains, We did and died like lions, to keep ourselves in chains, We lay in living ruins; firing and fearing not The strange fierce face of the Frenchman who knew for what he fought, And the man who seemed to be more than man we strained against and broke; And we broke our own rights with him. And still we never spoke. Our path of glory ended; we never heard guns again. But the squire seemed struck in the saddle; he was foolish, as if in pain. He leaned on a staggering lawyer, he clutched a cringing Jew, He was stricken; it may be, after all, he was stricken at Waterloo. Or perhaps the shades of the shaven men, whose spoil is in his house, Come back in shining shapes at last to spoil his last carouse: We only know the last sad squires ride slowly towards the sea, And a new people takes the land: and still it is not we. They have given us into the hands of the new unhappy lords, Lords without anger and honour, who dare not carry their swords. They fight by shuffling papers; they have bright dead alien eyes; They look at our labour and laughter as a tired man looks at flies. And the load of their loveless pity is worse than the ancient wrongs, Their doors are shut in the evenings; and they know no songs. We hear men speaking for us of new laws strong and sweet, Yet is there no man speaketh as we speak in the street. It may be we shall rise the last as Frenchmen rose the first, Our wrath come after Russia's wrath and our wrath be the worst. It may be we are meant to mark with our riot and our rest God's scorn for all men governing. It may be beer is best. But we are the people of England; and we have not spoken yet. Smile at us, pay us, pass us. But do not quite forget. 0 Vote up! Remember me when I am gone away, Gone far away into the silent land; +Horatius 0 Vote up! + 1 for Uncle Phil. An otherwise deeply unpleasant man tho. Ambulances for me. Kubla Khan Also some of RS Thomas when he’s not trying so hard to be Welsh. 0 Vote up! Reluctance Out through the fields and the woods And over the walls I have wended I have climbed the hills of view And looked at the world, and descended I have come by the highway home And lo, it is ended The leaves are all dead on the ground Save those that the oak is keeping To ravel them one by one And let them go scraping and creeping Out over the crusted snow When others are sleeping And the dead leaves lie huddled and still No longer blown hither and thither The last lone aster is gone The flowers of the witch-hazel wither The heart is still aching to seek But the feet question "Whither" Ah, when to the heart of man Was it ever less than a treason To go with the drift of things To yield with a grace to reason And bow and accept the end Of a love or a season? 0 Vote up! Yes, R S Thomas hits the spot and sticks with you. Here I am a man now. Pass your hand over my brow. You can feel the place where the brains grow. I am like a tree, From my top boughs I can see The footprints that led up to me. There is blood in my veins That has run clear of the stain Contracted in so many loins. Why, then, are my hands red With the blood of so many dead? Is this where I was misled? Why are my hands this way That they will not do as I say? Does no God hear when I pray? I have no where to go The swift satellites show The clock of my whole being is slow, It is too late to start For destinations not of the heart. I must stay here with my hurt. 0 Vote up! Ozymandias or the Lord of the Rings verse. 0 Vote up! Refresh Back to board Join the discussion Login Register 0 Vote up!