Lenore
Edgar Allan Poe

"Ah, broken is the golden bowl!-the spirit flown forever!
Let the bell toll!-a saintly soul floats on the Stygian river:-
And Guy De Vere, hast thou no tear?-weep now or never more!
See! on yon drear and rigid bier low lies thy love love, Lenore!
Come, let the burial rite be read-the funeralsong be sung!-
An anthem for the queenliest dead that ever died so young-
A dirge for her the doubly dead in that she died so young.

Wretches! ye loved her for her wealth, and ye hated her for her pride;
And, when she fell in feeble health, ye blessed her- that she died:-
How shall the ritual, then be read,-the requiem how be sung
By you-by yours, the evil eye,- by yours, the slanderous tongue
That did to death the innocence that died, and died so young?

Pecavimus; yet rave not thus! but let a Sabbath song
Go up to God so solemnly the dead may feel no wrong!
The sweet Lenore hath gone before, with Hope that flew beside,
Having thee wild for the dear child that should have been thy bride-
For her, the fair and debanair, that now so lowly lies,
The life upon her yellow hair, but now within her eyes-
The life still there upon her hair, the death upon her eyes.

Avaunt!-avaunt! to friends from fiends the indignant ghost is riven-
From Hell unto a high estae within the utmost Heaven-
From moan and groan to a golden throne beside the King of Heaven:-
Let no bell toll, then, lest her soul, amid its hallowed mirth,
Should catch the note as it doth float up from the damnéd Earth!
And I-to-night my heart is light:-no dirge will I upraise,
But waft the angel on her flight with a Paean of old days!"




To My Mother
Edgar Allan Poe

Because I feel that, in Heavens above,
The angels, whispering to one another,
Can find, among their burning terms of love,
None so devotional as that of "Mother,"
There for by that dear name I long have called you-
You who are more than mothre unto me,
And fill my heart of hearts, where Death instaled you
In setting my VIrginia's spirit free.
My mother-my own mother, who died early,
Was but the mother of myself; but you
Are mother to the one that I loved so dearly,
And thus are dearer than the mother i knew
By that infinity with which my wife
Was dearer to my soul than its soul-life.



The Road Not Taken
Robert Frost

Two roads diverged in a yellow wood,
And sorry I could not travel both
And be one travellar, long I stood
And looked down one as far as I could
To where it bent in the undergrowth;

Then took the other, just as fair,
And having perhaps the better claim
Because it was grassyand wanted wear;
Though as for that, the passing there
Had then really about the same

And both that morning equally lay
In leaves no step had trodden black.
Oh, I kept the first for another day!
Yet knowing how way leads onto way,
I doubted if I should ever come back.

I shall be telling you this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence:
Two roads diverged in a yellow wood, and I-
I took the one less travelled by,
And that has made all the difference.


Dancemanjoe
Joseph Hanks

It was the way I wanted, but only in a dream
the way you made me feel, so much more than it did seem

with each touch of your hand, each word that you would say
my heart reached out to yours, instead you met me half way

I was afraid, as I am, of only true things
afraid only to lose, what our senses did bring

Every time that you touched me, the words we endeavored
gave us tingling inside, brought us closer together

Time flew by quickly, it went by so fast
I hate that it ended, that last slow dance

I rushed home hoping, that you would be there
my prayers were answered as I sat in my chair

we talked for hours, wanting never to let go
I dreaded the moment and couldn't let go

you answered every question as only you could
so perfect in tune, every thought understood

I want you so badly, I still feel you inside
its all so real and true, each time I close my eyes

until our hearts meet, mine will be on the mend
its all in your hands........from beginning to end


George Gordon, Lord Byron
She Walks in Beauty

She walks in beauty, like the night
Of cloudless climes and starry skies;
And all that's best of dark and bright
Meet in her aspect and her eyes:
Thus mellow'd to that tender light
Which heaven to gaudy day denies.

One shade the more, one ray the less,
Had half impair'd the nameless grace
Which waves in every raven tress,
Or softly lightens o'er her face;
Where thoughts serenely sweet express
How pure, how dear their dwelling-place.

And on that cheek, and o'er that brow,
So soft, so calm, yet eloquent,
The smiles that win, the tints that glow,
But tell of days in goodness spent,
A mind at peace with all below,
A heart whose love is innocent!


George Gordon, Lord Byron
She Walks in Beauty

She walks in beauty, like the night
Of cloudless climes and starry skies;
And all that's best of dark and bright
Meet in her aspect and her eyes:
Thus mellow'd to that tender light
Which heaven to gaudy day denies.

One shade the more, one ray the less,
Had half impair'd the nameless grace
Which waves in every raven tress,
Or softly lightens o'er her face;
Where thoughts serenely sweet express
How pure, how dear their dwelling-place.

And on that cheek, and o'er that brow,
So soft, so calm, yet eloquent,
The smiles that win, the tints that glow,
But tell of days in goodness spent,
A mind at peace with all below,
A heart whose love is innocent!



Pablo Neruda
Saddest Poem

I can write the saddest poem of all tonight.

Write, for instance: "The night is full of stars,
and the stars, blue, shiver in the distance."

The night wind whirls in the sky and sings.

I can write the saddest poem of all tonight.
I loved her, and sometimes she loved me too.

On nights like this, I held her in my arms.
I kissed her so many times under the infinite sky.

She loved me, sometimes I loved her.
How could I not have loved her large, still eyes?

I can write the saddest poem of all tonight.
To think I don't have her. To feel that I've lost her.

To hear the immense night, more immense without her.
And the poem falls to the soul as dew to grass.

What does it matter that my love couldn't keep her.
The night is full of stars and she is not with me.

That's all. Far away, someone sings. Far away.
My soul is lost without her.

As if to bring her near, my eyes search for her.
My heart searches for her and she is not with me.

The same night that whitens the same trees.
We, we who were, we are the same no longer.

I no longer love her, true, but how much I loved her.
My voice searched the wind to touch her ear.

Someone else's. She will be someone else's. As she once
belonged to my kisses.
Her voice, her light body. Her infinite eyes.

I no longer love her, true, but perhaps I love her.
Love is so short and oblivion so long.

Because on nights like this I held her in my arms,
my soul is lost without her.

Although this may be the last pain she causes me,
and this may be the last poem I write for her.

Samuel Taylor Coleridge
Love

And in Life's noisiest hour,
There whispers still the ceaseless Love of Thee,
The heart's Self-solace and soliloquy.
You mould my Hopes, you fashion me within ;
And to the leading Love-throb in the Heart
Thro' all my Being, thro' my pulse's beat ;
You lie in all my many Thoughts, like Light,
Like the fair light of Dawn, or summer Eve
On rippling Stream, or cloud-reflecting Lake.
And looking to the Heaven, that bends above you,
How oft! I bless the Lot that made me love you.


Edgar Allan Poe
A Dream within a Dream

Take this kiss upon the brow!
And, in parting from you now,
Thus much let me avow-
You are not wrong, who deem
That my days have been a dream;
Yet if Hope has flown away
In a night, or in a day,
In a vision, or in none,
Is it therefore the less gone?
All that we see or seem
Is but a dream within a dream.

I stand amid the roar
Of a surf-tormented shore,
And I hold within my hand
Grains of golden sand-
How few! yet how they creep
Through my fingers to the deep,
While I weep-while I weep!
O God! can I not grasp
Them with a tighter clasp?
O God! can I not save
One from the pitiless wave?



Edgar Allan Poe (1809-1849)
The Raven

Once upon a midnight dreary, while I pondered, weak and weary,
Over many a quaint and curious volume of forgotten lore-
While I nodded, nearly napping, suddenly there came a tapping,
As of some one gently rapping, rapping at my chamber door.
"'Tis some visiter," I muttered, "tapping at my chamber door-
Only this and nothing more."

Ah, distinctly I remember it was in the bleak December;
And each separate dying ember wrought its ghost upon the floor.
Eagerly I wished the morrow;-vainly I had sought to borrow
From my books surcease of sorrow-sorrow for the lost Lenore-
For the rare and radiant maiden whom the angels name Lenore-
Nameless here for evermore.

And the silken, sad, uncertain rustling of each purple curtain
Thrilled me-filled me with fantastic terrors never felt before;
So that now, to still the beating of my heart, I stood repeating
"'Tis some visiter entreating entrance at my chamber door-
Some late visiter entreating entrance at my chamber door;-
This it is and nothing more."

Presently my soul grew stronger; hesitating then no longer,
Sir," said I, "or Madam, truly your forgiveness I implore;
But the fact is I was napping, and so gently you came rapping,
And so faintly you came tapping, tapping at my chamber door,
That I scarce was sure I heard you"-here I opened wide the door;-
Darkness there and nothing more.

Deep into that darkness peering, long I stood there wondering, fearing,
Doubting, dreaming dreams no mortal ever dared to dream before;
But the silence was unbroken, and the stillness gave no token,
And the only word there spoken was the whispered word, "Lenore?"
This I whispered, and an echo murmured back the word, "Lenore!"-
Merely this and nothing more.

Back into the chamber turning, all my soul within me burning,
Soon again I heard a tapping somewhat louder than before.
"Surely," said I, "surely that is something at my window lattice;
Let me see, then, what thereat is, and this mystery explore-
Let my heart be still a moment and this mystery explore;-
'Tis the wind and nothing more!"

Open here I flung the shutter, when, with many a flirt and flutter,
In there stepped a stately Raven of the saintly days of yore;
Not the least obeisance made he; not a minute stopped or stayed he;
But, with mien of lord or lady, perched above my chamber door-
Perched upon a bust of Pallas just above my chamber door-
Perched, and sat, and nothing more.

Then this ebony bird beguiling my sad fancy into smiling,
By the grave and stern decorum of the countenance it wore,
"Though thy crest be shorn and shaven, thou," I said, "art sure no craven,
Ghastly grim and ancient Raven wandering from the Nightly shore-
Tell me what thy lordly name is on the Night's Plutonian shore!"
Quoth the Raven "Nevermore."

Much I marvelled this ungainly fowl to hear discourse so plainly,
Though its answer little meaning--little relevancy bore;
For we cannot help agreeing that no living human being
Ever yet was blessed with seeing bird above his chamber door-
Bird or beast upon the sculptured bust above his chamber door,
With such name as "Nevermore."

But the Raven, sitting lonely on the placid bust, spoke only
That one word, as if his soul in that one word he did outpour.
Nothing farther then he uttered-not a feather then he fluttered-
Till I scarcely more than muttered "Other friends have flown before-
On the morrow he will leave me, as my Hopes have flown before."
Then the bird said "Nevermore."

Startled at the stillness broken by reply so aptly spoken,
"Doubtless," said I, "what it utters is its only stock and store
Caught from some unhappy master whom unmerciful Disaster
Followed fast and followed faster till his songs one burden bore--
Till the dirges of his Hope that melancholy burden bore
Of 'Never-nevermore'."

But the Raven still beguiling all my fancy into smiling,
Straight I wheeled a cushioned seat in front of bird, and bust and door;
Then, upon the velvet sinking, I betook myself to linking
Fancy unto fancy, thinking what this ominous bird of yore-
What this grim, ungainly, ghastly, gaunt, and ominous bird of yore
Meant in croaking "Nevermore."

This I sat engaged in guessing, but no syllable expressing
To the fowl whose fiery eyes now burned into my bosom's core;
This and more I sat divining, with my head at ease reclining
On the cushion's velvet lining that the lamp-light gloated o'er,
But whose velvet-violet lining with the lamp-light gloating o'er,
She shall press, ah, nevermore!

Then, methought, the air grew denser, perfumed from an unseen censer
Swung by Seraphim whose foot-falls tinkled on the tufted floor.
"Wretch," I cried, "thy God hath lent thee--by these angels he hath sent thee
Respite-respite and nepenthe from thy memories of Lenore;
Quaff, oh quaff this kind nepenthe and forget this lost Lenore!"
Quoth the Raven "Nevermore."

"Prophet!" said I, "thing of evil!-prophet still, if bird or devil!-
Whether Tempter sent, or whether tempest tossed thee here ashore,
Desolate yet all undaunted, on this desert land enchanted-
On this home by Horror haunted-tell me truly, I implore-
Is there-is there balm in Gilead?-tell me-tell me, I implore!"
Quoth the Raven "Nevermore."

"Prophet!" said I, "thing of evil!-prophet still, if bird or devil!
By that Heaven that bends above us-by that God we both adore-
Tell this soul with sorrow laden if, within the distant Aidenn,
It shall clasp a sainted maiden whom the angels name Lenore-
Clasp a rare and radiant maiden whom the angels name Lenore."
Quoth the Raven "Nevermore."

"Be that word our sign of parting, bird or fiend!" I shrieked, upstarting-
"Get thee back into the tempest and the Night's Plutonian shore!
Leave no black plume as a token of that lie thy soul hath spoken!
Leave my loneliness unbroken!-quit the bust above my door!
Take thy beak from out my heart, and take thy form from off my door!"
Quoth the Raven "Nevermore."

And the Raven, never flitting, still is sitting, still is sitting
On the pallid bust of Pallas just above my chamber door;
And his eyes have all the seeming of a demon's that is dreaming,
And the lamp-light o'er him streaming throws his shadow on the floor;
And my soul from out that shadow that lies floating on the floor
Shall be lifted-nevermore!

William Shakespeare (1564-1616)
Sonnet XVII: ''Shall I Compare Thee to a summer's Day?''

Shall I compare thee to a summer's day?
Thou art more lovely and more temperate.
Rough winds do shake the darling buds of May,
And summer's lease hath all too short a date.
Sometime too hot the eye of heaven shines,
And often is his gold complexion dimm'd;
And every fair from fair sometime declines,
By chance or nature's changing course untrimm'd;
But thy eternal summer shall not fade
Nor lose possession of that fair thou ow'st;
Nor shall Death brag thou wander'st in his shade,
When in eternal lines to time thou grow'st:
So long as men can breathe or eyes can see,
So long lives this, and this gives life to thee.


Pablo Neruda (1904-1973)
Poetry

And it was at that age . . . Poetry arrived
in search of me. I don't know, I don't know where
it came from, from winter or a river.
I don't know how or when,
no, they were not voices, they were not
words, nor silence,
but from a street I was summoned,
from the branches of night,
abruptly from the others,
among violent fires
or returning alone,
there I was without a face
and it touched me.

I did not know what to say, my mouth
had no way
with names
my eyes were blind,
and something started in my soul,
fever or forgotten wings,
and I made my own way,
deciphering
that fire
and I wrote the first faint line,
faint, without substance, pure
nonsense,
pure wisdom
of someone who knows nothing,
and suddenly I saw
the heavens
unfastened
and open,
planets,
palpitating planations,
shadow perforated,
riddled
with arrows, fire and flowers,
the winding night, the universe.

And I, infinitesimal being,
drunk with the great starry
void,
likeness, image of
mystery,
I felt myself a pure part
of the abyss,
I wheeled with the stars,
my heart broke free on the open sky.


Robert Browning (1812-1889)
My Last Duchess

That's my last Duchess painted on the wall,
Looking as if she were alive. I call
That piece a wonder, now: Fra Pandolf's hands
Worked busily a day, and there she stands.
Will 't please you sit and look at her? I said
"Fra Pandolf" by design, for never read
Strangers like you that pictured countenance,
The depth and passion of its earnest glance,
But to myself they turned (since none puts by
The curtain I have drawn for you, but I)
And seemed as they would ask me, if they durst,
How such a glance came there; so, not the first
Are you to turn and ask thus. Sir, 'twas not
Her husband's presence only, called that spot
Of joy into the Duchess' cheek: perhaps
Fra Pandolf chanced to say "Her mantle laps
Over my lady's wrist too much," or "Paint
Must never hope to reproduce the faint
Half-flush that dies along her throat": such stuff
Was courtesy, she thought, and cause enough
For calling up that spot of joy. She had
A heart-how shall I say?-too soon made glad,
Too easily impressed; she liked whate'er
She looked on, and her looks went everywhere.
Sir, 'twas all one! My favor at her breast,
The dropping of the daylight in the West,
The bough of cherries some officious fool
Broke in the orchard for her, the white mule
She rode with round the terrace-all and each
Would draw from her alike the approving speech,
Or blush, at least. She thanked men-good! but thanked
Somehow-I know not how-as if she ranked
My gift of a nine-hundred-years-old name
With anybody's gift. Who'd stoop to blame
This sort of trifling? Even had you skill
In speech-which I have not-to make your will
Quite clear to such an one, and say, "Just this
Or that in you disgusts me; here you miss,
Or there exceed the mark"-and if she let
Herself be lessoned so, nor plainly set
Her wits to yours, forsooth, and made excuse
-E'en then would be some stooping; and I choose
Never to stoop. Oh sir, she smiled, no doubt,
Whene'er I passed her; but who passed without
Much the same smile? This grew; I gave commands;
Then all smiles stopped together. There she stands
As if alive. Will 't please you rise? We'll meet
The company below, then. I repeat,
The Count your master's known munificence
Is ample warrant that no just pretense
Of mine for dowry will be disallowed;
Though his fair daughter's self as I avowed
At starting, is my object. Nay, we'll go
Together down, sir. Notice Neptune, though,
Taming a sea horse, thought a rarity,
Which Claus of Innshruck cast in bronze for me!


Guiuseppe Artale
The Lady With Glasses

Tis not to quench her lovers ardent flames
That she places on her eyes thses sheets of snow
Nay, tis that from a distance she may throw
Strentghen'd with crystal, lovely wouding beams

If with his rays the sun doth heat inspire
She but to makeincendiary her looks
Puts on these glasses that her lightning strokes
May shoot instead of rays a raging fire

Like Archimedes shes on arson bent
For she knows the sun through glass in subtle ways
Is cause of fire and agoniz'd lament
Or she turns to stone the better to harrass
And no heart can escape her burning rays
She, wiser far than Love, hath bonds of glass


Francisco de Quevedo
A Love Constant Beyond Death

THe last shade that takes from me white day
May close my eyes and may release my soul
At once, and may with flattery fullfill
The spirrits eager urge to be away

But my soul shall not the memory forsake
Of where it burn'd there on the other shore
My passions swims in waters cold, and more
The rigid law of nature still doth break

A soul which has a god entire confin'd
Veins which have given fuel to such a fire
A marrow which so gloriously has burn'd
Shall from their body, not their care, remove
Shall turn to ash, but ash which knows desire
Dust they shall be, but always dust in love


David Schirmer
To My Tormenter

Soul of my soul, why must I languish
Meet your death through your disdain
From this dager, from this anguish
Let me know relief again
Rather kill some worthy foe
Than me, whose crime is love to show

Do not let me lifeless lie
Until my wretched life is through
You can my lost strength supply
You, beloved beauty, you
That I, free from all loss and pain
Shall know the fullest joy again

The green feet of the fragrant woods
Your fair reflected virtue hold
The purest rivers silver floods
Run for your sake only gold
All nature waits your form to see
Alas, when will you comfort me

Come and go, cool lovely day
Come, night when all the roses blow
O that my arms might have a way
To hold the cause of all my woe
Come, La Bella, jewel so rare
With yuou life and death you bear



Percy Bysshe Shelley (1792-1822)
from Mont Blanc: Lines Written in the Vale of Chamouni

I
The everlasting universe of things
Flows through the mind, and rolls its rapid waves,
Now dark-now glittering-now reflecting gloom-
Now lending splendour, where from secret springs
The source of human thought its tribute brings
Of waters-with a sound but half its own,
Such as a feeble brook will oft assume,
In the wild woods, among the mountains lone,
Where waterfalls around it leap for ever,
Where woods and winds contend, and a vast river
Over its rocks ceaselessly bursts and raves.

II
Thus thou, Ravine of Arve-dark, deep Ravine-
Thou many-colour'd, many-voiced vale,
Over whose pines, and crags, and caverns sail
Fast cloud-shadows and sunbeams: awful scene,
Where Power in likeness of the Arve comes down
From the ice-gulfs that gird his secret throne,
Bursting through these dark mountains like the flame
Of lightning through the tempest; -thou dost lie,
Thy giant brood of pines around thee clinging,
Children of elder time, in whose devotion
The chainless winds still come and ever came
To drink their odours, and their mighty swinging
To hear-an old and solemn harmony;
Thine earthly rainbows stretch'd across the sweep
Of the aethereal waterfall, whose veil
Robes some unsculptur'd image; the strange sleep
Which when the voices of the desert fail
Wraps all in its own deep eternity;
Thy caverns echoing to the Arve's commotion,
A loud, lone sound no other sound can tame;
Thou art pervaded with that ceaseless motion,
Thou art the path of that unresting sound-
Dizzy Ravine! and when I gaze on thee
I seem as in a trance sublime and strange
To muse on my own separate fantasy,
My own, my human mind, which passively
Now renders and receives fast influencings,
Holding an unremitting interchange
With the clear universe of things around;
One legion of wild thoughts, whose wandering wings
Now float above thy darkness, and now rest
Where that or thou art no unbidden guest,
In the still cave of the witch Poesy,
Seeking among the shadows that pass by
Ghosts of all things that are, some shade of thee,
Some phantom, some faint image; till the breast
From which they fled recalls them, thou art there!

Allen Ginsberg (1926-1997)
from Howl for Carl Solomon

I.
I saw the best minds of my generation destroyed by madness, starving hysterical naked,
dragging themselves through the negro streets at dawn looking for an angry fix,
angelheaded hipsters burning for the ancient heavenly connection to the starry dynamo in
the machinery of night,
who poverty and tatters and hollow-eyed and high sat up smoking in the supernatural
darkness of cold-water flats floating across the tops of cities contemplating jazz,
who bared their brains to Heaven under the El and saw Mohammedan angels staggering
on tenement roofs illuminated,
who passed through universities with radiant cool eyes hallucinating Arkansas and
Blake-light tragedy among the scholars of war,
who were expelled from the academies for crazy & publishing obscene odes on the
windows of the skull,
who cowered in unshaven rooms in underwear, burning their money in wastebaskets and
listening to the Terror through the wall, got busted in their pubic beards returning
through
Laredo with a belt of marijuana for New York,
who ate fire in paint hotels or drank turpentine in Paradise Alley, death, or purgatoried
their torsos night after night
with dreams, with drugs, with waking nightmares, alcohol and cock and endless balls,
incomparable blind; streets of shuddering cloud and lightning in the mind leaping toward
poles of Canada & Paterson, illuminating all the motionless world of Time between,
Peyote solidities of halls, backyard green tree cemetery dawns, wine drunkenness over
the rooftops, storefront boroughs of teahead joyride neon blinking traffic light, sun and
moon and tree vibrations in the roaring winter dusks of Brooklyn, ashcan rantings and
kind king light of mind,
who chained themselves to subways for the endless ride from Battery to holy Bronx on
benzedrine until the noise of wheels and children brought them down shuddering
mouth-wracked and battered bleak of brain all drained of brilliance in the drear light of
Zoo,
who sank all night in submarine light of Bickford's floated out and sat through the stale
beer after noon in desolate Fugazzi's, listening to the crack of doom on the hydrogen
jukebox,
who talked continuously seventy hours from park to pad to bar to Bellevue to museum to
the Brooklyn Bridge,
a lost battalion of platonic conversationalists jumping down the stoops off fire escapes off
windowsills off Empire State out of the moon,
yacketayakking screaming vomiting whispering facts and memories and anecdotes and
eyeball kicks and shocks of hospitals and jails and wars,

whole intellects disgorged in total recall for seven days and nights with brilliant eyes,
meat for the Synagogue cast on the pavement,
who vanished into nowhere Zen New Jersey leaving a trail of ambiguous picture
postcards of Atlantic City Hall,
suffering Eastern sweats and Tangerian bone-grindings and migraines of China under
junk-withdrawal in Newark's bleak furnished room,
who wandered around and around at midnight in the railroad yard wondering where to
go, and went, leaving no broken hearts,
who lit cigarettes in boxcars boxcars boxcars racketing through snow toward lonesome
farms in grandfather night,
who studied Plotinus Poe St. John of the Cross telepathy and bop kabbalah because the
cosmos instinctively vibrated at their feet in Kansas,
who loned it through the streets of Idaho seeking visionary indian angels who were
visionary indian angels,
who thought they were only mad when Baltimore gleamed in supernatural ecstasy,
who jumped in limousines with the Chinaman of Oklahoma on the impulse of winter
midnight street light smalltown rain,
who lounged hungry and lonesome through Houston seeking jazz or sex or soup, and
followed the brilliant Spaniard to converse about America and Eternity, a hopeless task,
and so took ship to Africa,
who disappeared into the volcanoes of Mexico leaving behind nothing but the shadow of
dungarees and the lava and ash of poetry scattered in fire place Chicago,

who reappeared on the West Coast investigating the F.B.I. in beards and shorts with big
pacifist eyes sexy in their dark skin passing out incomprehensible leaflets,
who burned cigarette holes in their arms protesting the narcotic tobacco haze of
Capitalism, who distributed Supercommunist pamphlets in Union Square weeping and
undressing while the sirens of Los Alamos wailed them down, and wailed
down Wall, and the Staten Island ferry also wailed,
who broke down crying in white gymnasiums naked and trembling before the machinery
of other skeletons,
who bit detectives in the neck and shrieked with delight in policecars for committing no
crime but their own wild cooking pederasty and intoxication,
who howled on their knees in the subway and were dragged off the roof waving genitals
and manuscripts,
who let themselves be fucked in the ass by saintly motorcyclists, and screamed with joy,
who blew and were blown by those human seraphim, the sailors, caresses of Atlantic and
Caribbean love,
who balled in the morning in the evenings in rose gardens and the grass of public parks
and cemeteries scattering their semen freely to whomever come who may,
who hiccuped endlessly trying to giggle but wound up with a sob behind a partition in a
Turkish Bath when the blond & naked angel came to pierce
them with a sword,
who lost their loveboys to the three old shrews of fate the one eyed shrew of the
heterosexual dollar the one eyed shrew that winks out of the womb and the one eyed
shrew that does nothing but sit on her ass and snip the intellectual golden threads of the
craftsman's loom,
who copulated ecstatic and insatiate with a bottle of beer a sweetheart a package of
cigarettes a candle and fell off the bed, and continued along the floor and down the hall
and ended fainting on the wall with a vision of ultimate cunt and come eluding the last
gyzym of consciousness,
who sweetened the snatches of a million girls trembling in the sunset, and were red eyed
in the morning but prepared to sweeten the snatch of the sun rise, flashing buttocks under
barns and naked in the lake,
who went out whoring through Colorado in myriad stolen night-cars, N.C., secret hero of
these poems, cocksman and Adonis of Denver-joy to the memory of his innumerable lays
of girls in empty lots & diner backyards, moviehouses' rickety rows, on mountaintops in
caves or with gaunt waitresses in familiar roadside lonely petticoat upliftings &
especially secret gas-station solipsisms of johns, & hometown alleys too,
who faded out in vast sordid movies, were shifted in dreams, woke on a sudden
Manhattan, and picked themselves up out of basements hung over with heartless Tokay
and horrors of Third Avenue iron dreams & stumbled to unemployment offices,
who walked all night with their shoes full of blood on the snowbank docks waiting for a
door in the East River to open to a room full of steamheat and opium,
who created great suicidal dramas on the apartment cliff-banks of the Hudson under the
wartime blue floodlight of the moon & their heads shall be crowned with laurel in
oblivion,
who ate the lamb stew of the imagination or digested the crab at the muddy bottom of the
rivers of Bowery,
who wept at the romance of the streets with their pushcarts full of onions and bad music,
who sat in boxes breathing in the darkness under the bridge, and rose up to build
harpsichords in their lofts,
who coughed on the sixth floor of Harlem crowned with flame under the tubercular sky
surrounded by orange crates of theology,
who scribbled all night rocking and rolling over lofty incantations which in the yellow
morning were stanzas of gibberish,
who cooked rotten animals lung heart feet tail borsht & tortillas dreaming of the pure
vegetable kingdom,
who plunged themselves under meat trucks looking for an egg,
who threw their watches off the roof to cast their ballot for Eternity outside of Time, &
alarm clocks fell on their heads every day for the next decade,
who cut their wrists three times successively unsuccessfully, gave up and were forced to
open antique stores where they thought they were growing old and cried,
who were burned alive in their innocent flannel suits on Madison Avenue amid blasts of
leaden verse & the tanked-up clatter of the iron regiments of fashion & the nitroglycerine
shrieks of the fairies of advertising & the mustard gas of sinister intelligent editors, or
were run down by the drunken taxicabs of Absolute Reality,
who jumped off the Brooklyn Bridge this actually happened and walked away unknown
and forgotten into the ghostly daze of Chinatown soup alley & firetrucks, not even one
free beer,

who sang out of their windows in despair, fell out of the subway window, jumped in the
filthy Passaic, leaped on negroes, cried all over the street, danced on broken wineglasses
barefoot smashed phonograph records of nostalgic European 1930s German jazz finished
the whiskey and threw up groaning into the bloody toilet, moans in their ears and the
blast of colossal steam whistles,
who barreled down the highways of the past journeying to each other's hotrod-Golgotha
jail-solitude watch or Birmingham jazz incarnation,
who drove crosscountry seventytwo hours to find out if I had a vision or you had a vision
or he had a vision to find out Eternity,
who journeyed to Denver, who died in Denver, who came back to Denver & waited in
vain, who watched over Denver & brooded & loned in and finally went away to find out
the Time, & now Denver is lonesome for her heroes,
who fell on their knees in hopeless cathedrals praying for each other's salvation and light
and breasts, until the soul illuminated its hair for a second,
who crashed through their minds in jail waiting for impossible criminals with golden
heads and the charm of reality in their hearts who sang sweet blues to Alcatraz,
who retired to Mexico to cultivate a habit, or Rocky Mount to tender Buddha or Tangiers
to boys or Southern Pacific to the black locomotive or Harvard to Narcissus to Woodlawn
to the daisychain or grave,
who demanded sanity trials accusing the radio of hypnotism & were left with their
insanity & their hands & a hung jury,
who threw potato salad at CCNY lecturers on Dadaism and subsequently presented
themselves on the granite steps of the madhouse with shaven heads and harlequin speech
of suicide, demanding instantaneous lobotomy,
and who were given instead the concrete void of insulin Metrazol electricity
hydrotherapy psychotherapy occupational therapy pingpong & amnesia,
who in humorless protest overturned only one symbolic pingpong table, resting briefly in
catatonia,

returning years later truly bald except for a wig of blood, and tears and fingers, to the
visible mad man doom of the wards of the madtowns of the East,
Pilgrim State's Rockland's and Greystone's foetid halls, bickering with the echoes of the
soul, rocking and rolling in the midnight solitude-bench dolmen-realms of love, dream of
life a nightmare, bodies turned to stone as heavy as the moon,
with mother finally ******, and the last fantastic book flung out of the tenement window,
and the last door closed at 4. A.M. and the last telephone slammed at the wall in reply
and the last furnished room emptied down to the last piece of mental furniture, a yellow
paper rose twisted on a wire hanger in the closet, and even that imaginary, nothing but a
hopeful little bit of hallucination-
ah, Carl, while you are not safe I am not safe, and now you're really in the total animal
soup of time
and who therefore ran through the icy streets obsessed with a sudden flash of the alchemy
of the use of the ellipse the catalog the meter & the vibrating plane,
who dreamt and made incarnate gaps in Time & Space through images juxtaposed, and
trapped the archangel of the soul between 2 visual images and joined the elemental
verbs and set the noun and dash of consciousness together jumping with sensation of
Pater Omnipotens Aeterna Deus
to recreate the syntax and measure of poor human prose and stand before you speechless
and intelligent and shaking with shame, rejected yet confessing out the soul to conform
to the rhythm of thought in his naked and endless head,
the madman bum and angel beat in Time, unknown, yet putting down here what might be
left to say in time come after death,
and rose reincarnate in the ghostly clothes of jazz in the goldhorn shadow of the band and
blew the suffering of America's naked mind for love into an eli eli lamma lamma
sabacthani saxophone cry that shivered the cities down to the last radio
with the absolute heart of the poem of life butchered out of their own bodies good to eat a
thousand years.

William Wordsworth (1770-1850)
Lines Composed a Few Miles above Tintern Abbey,
On Revisiting the Banks of the Wye during a Tour

Five years have past; five summers, with the length
Of five long winters! and again I hear
These waters, rolling from their mountain-springs
With a soft inland murmur.-Once again
Do I behold these steep and lofty cliffs,
That on a wild secluded scene impress
Thoughts of more deep seclusion; and connect
The landscape with the quiet of the sky.
The day is come when I again repose
Here, under this dark sycamore, and view
These plots of cottage-ground, these orchard-tufts,
Which at this season, with their unripe fruits,
Are clad in one green hue, and lose themselves
'Mid groves and copses. Once again I see
These hedge-rows, hardly hedge-rows, little lines
Of sportive wood run wild: these pastoral farms,
Green to the very door; and wreaths of smoke
Sent up, in silence, from among the trees!
With some uncertain notice, as might seem
Of vagrant dwellers in the houseless woods,
Or of some Hermit's cave, where by his fire
The Hermit sits alone.

These beauteous forms,
Through a long absence, have not been to me
As is a landscape to a blind man's eye:
But oft, in lonely rooms, and 'mid the din
Of towns and cities, I have owed to them,
In hours of weariness, sensations sweet,
Felt in the blood, and felt along the heart;
And passing even into my purer mind
With tranquil restoration:-feelings too
Of unremembered pleasure: such, perhaps,
As have no slight or trivial influence
On that best portion of a good man's life,
His little, nameless, unremembered, acts
Of kindness and of love. Nor less, I trust,
To them I may have owed another gift,
Of aspect more sublime; that blessed mood,
In which the burthen of the mystery,
In which the heavy and the weary weight
Of all this unintelligible world,
Is lightened:-that serene and blessed mood,
In which the affections gently lead us on,-
Until, the breath of this corporeal frame
And even the motion of our human blood
Almost suspended, we are laid asleep
In body, and become a living soul:
While with an eye made quiet by the power
Of harmony, and the deep power of joy,
We see into the life of things.

If this
Be but a vain belief, yet, oh! how oft-
In darkness and amid the many shapes
Of joyless daylight; when the fretful stir
Unprofitable, and the fever of the world,
Have hung upon the beatings of my heart-
How oft, in spirit, have I turned to thee,
O sylvan Wye! thou wanderer thro' the woods,
How often has my spirit turned to thee!

And now, with gleams of half-extinguished thought,
With many recognitions dim and faint,
And somewhat of a sad perplexity,
The picture of the mind revives again:
While here I stand, not only with the sense
Of present pleasure, but with pleasing thoughts
That in this moment there is life and food
For future years. And so I dare to hope,
Though changed, no doubt, from what I was when first
I came among these hills; when like a roe
I bounded o'er the mountains, by the sides
Of the deep rivers, and the lonely streams,
Wherever nature led: more like a man
Flying from something that he dreads, than one
Who sought the thing he loved. For nature then
(The coarser pleasures of my boyish days
And their glad animal movements all gone by)
To me was all in all. -I cannot paint
What then I was. The sounding cataract
Haunted me like a passion: the tall rock,
The mountain, and the deep and gloomy wood,
Their colours and their forms, were then to me
An appetite; a feeling and a love,
That had no need of a remoter charm,
By thought supplied, not any interest
Unborrowed from the eye. -That time is past,
And all its aching joys are now no more,
And all its dizzy raptures. Not for this
Faint I, nor mourn nor murmur; other gifts
Have followed; for such loss, I would believe,
Abundant recompense. For I have learned
To look on nature, not as in the hour
Of thoughtless youth; but hearing oftentimes
The still sad music of humanity,
Nor harsh nor grating, though of ample power
To chasten and subdue. -And I have felt
A presence that disturbs me with the joy
Of elevated thoughts; a sense sublime
Of something far more deeply interfused,
Whose dwelling is the light of setting suns,
And the round ocean and the living air,
And the blue sky, and in the mind of man:
A motion and a spirit, that impels
All thinking things, all objects of all thought,
And rolls through all things. Therefore am I still
A lover of the meadows and the woods
And mountains; and of all that we behold
From this green earth; of all the mighty world
Of eye, and ear, -both what they half create,
And what perceive; well pleased to recognise
In nature and the language of the sense
The anchor of my purest thoughts, the nurse,
The guide, the guardian of my heart, and soul
Of all my moral being.

Nor perchance,
If I were not thus taught, should I the more
Suffer my genial spirits to decay:
For thou art with me here upon the banks
Of this fair river; thou my dearest Friend,
My dear, dear Friend; and in thy voice I catch
The language of my former heart, and read
My former pleasures in the shooting lights
Of thy wild eyes. Oh! yet a little while
May I behold in thee what I was once,
My dear, dear Sister! and this prayer I make,
Knowing that Nature never did betray
The heart that loved her; 'tis her privilege,
Through all the years of this our life, to lead
From joy to joy: for she can so inform
The mind that is within us, so impress
With quietness and beauty, and so feed
With lofty thoughts, that neither evil tongues,
Rash judgments, nor the sneers of selfish men,
Nor greetings where no kindness is, nor all
The dreary intercourse of daily life,
Shall e'er prevail against us, or disturb
Our cheerful faith, that all which we behold
Is full of blessings. Therefore let the moon
Shine on thee in thy solitary walk;
And let the misty mountain-winds be free
To blow against thee: and, in after years,
When these wild ecstasies shall be matured
Into a sober pleasure; when thy mind
Shall be a mansion for all lovely forms,
Thy memory be as a dwelling-place
For all sweet sounds and harmonies; oh! then,
If solitude, or fear, or pain, or grief,
Should be thy portion, with what healing thoughts
Of tender joy wilt thou remember me,
And these my exhortations! Nor, perchance-
If I should be where I no more can hear
Thy voice, nor catch from thy wild eyes these gleams
Of past existence--wilt thou then forget
That on the banks of this delightful stream
We stood together; and that I, so long
A worshipper of Nature, hither came
Unwearied in that service: rather say
With warmer love-oh! with far deeper zeal
Of holier love. Nor wilt thou then forget,
That after many wanderings, many years
Of absence, these steep woods and lofty cliffs,
And this green pastoral landscape, were to me
More dear, both for themselves and for thy sake!



Agrippa D' Aubigné
Stanzas To Diane


I open here my breast, a bloody tomb
Of lurid woes: for God's sake, turn your eyes,
Diane, and see my cleft heart where it lies
And see my lungs engrav'd with passions doom.

My frothing blood all blacken'd with the flame,
My wretched bones dried out with my despair;
But also what invisibly is there:
The torments which ransack my spirits frame.

You burn me, and at the furnace of desire
You warm your icy hands; in careful wise
You stir my coals, and your inhuman eyes
Weep not with pity but with burning ire.

In the fire of the furry I provoke
Your eyes swell up with pain and overflow,
But 'tis not the unhappiness I owe-
Your eyes are troubled by my bitter smoke

At least my death may please your greedy soul,
Burning the heart and body of your slave;
May then my spirit sweeter torture have,
In dying thus your rage exausting whole.


Etuenne Durand
THe Fire Rises Ever to the Sky


The fire rises ever to the sky
The waters flow to oceans fruitful breast
And the moon above us labours without rest
The tides ebb and then raise on high

The trees which push out from their native earth
In time or fire to their dust return
And this great All, of Nothing made, shall turn
At last to nothing just as ere its birth

We see that all returns to whence it came
Is in all flux eternally the same
'Tis all too just, Urania, that my sighs
Sould touch in verse the source of their desire
And burning with my loves undeasing fire
return to whence they take their life, thine eyes




Jean de Sponde
Yes, So We All Must DIe

Yes, so we all must die, and proud life all
Defying death, must one day feel its powers
Incessant suns will scorch these transient flowers
And time explode this vain inflated ball

THis fair torch which cassts its smoky flame
Will gutter in its wax and die away
The colours of this picture will decay
THese waves will break against the shore in foam

Ive seen lightning flash before my eyes
And heard the thunder growling in the skys
When from every sidethe mounting storm doth hurry
Ive seen the snow melt and its torrents dry
Ans seen those roaring lions without furry
Live on, O men, but so we all muyst die



Wang Wei
Lazy About Writing Poems

With time I become lazy about writing poems
Now my only company is old age
In an earlier life I was a poet, a mistake,
and my former body belonged to a painter
I can;t abandon habits of that life
and sometimes am reckonized by people of this world
My name and pen name speak my former being
but about all this my heart is ignorant




Dylan Thomas (1914-1953)
Do Not Go Gentle into That Good Night

Do not go gentle into that good night,
Old age should burn and rave at close of day;
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

Though wise men at their end know dark is right,
Because their words had forked no lightning they
Do not go gentle into that good night.

Good men, the last wave by, crying how bright
Their frail deeds might have danced in a green bay,
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

Wild men who caught and sang the sun in flight,
And learn, too late, they grieved it on its way,
Do not go gentle into that good night.

Grave men, near death, who see with blinding sight
Blind eyes could blaze like meteors and be gay,
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

And you, my father, there on the sad height,
Curse, bless, me now with your fierce tears, I pray.
Do not go gentle into that good night.
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

Edmund Spenser (1552-1599)
from Amoretti LXVII: Like As A Huntsman

Like as a huntsman after weary chase,
Seeing the game from him escap'd away,
Sits down to rest him in some shady place,
With panting hounds beguiled of their prey:
So after long pursuit and vain assay,
When I all weary had the chase forsook,
The gentle deer return'd the self-same way,
Thinking to quench her thirst at the next brook.
There she beholding me with milder look,
Sought not to fly, but fearless still did bide:
Till I in hand her yet half trembling took,
And with her own goodwill her firmly tied.
Strange thing, me seem'd, to see a beast so wild,
So goodly won, with her own will beguil'd.


Orchards in July
Zbigniew Mache


Water from cold springs
and glittering minerals
tiresly wander
Patient, unceasing
they overcome granite layers
of hungry gravel, iridescent
precints of clay. If they abandon
themselves to go black
roots it;s the only to go
up, as high as possible
through wells hidden
under the bark of fruit trees. Through
the green touched withgray, of leaves
fallen petals of white
flowers with rosy edges
apples heavy with sweet redness
and their bitterish seeds
O, waters from cold
springs and glitteing
minerals! You are awaited
by a cirrus with a fluid,
sunny outline
and by an abyss of blue
which has been rinsed
in the just wind.


The Most of It
Robert Frost


He thought he kept the universe alone
For all the voice in awner he could wake
Was but the mocking echoe of his own
From some tree hidden cliff across the lake
Some morning from the boulder broken beach
He would cry out on life, that what it wants
Is not its own love, original response
And nothing ever came of what he cried
Unless it was the embodiment that crashed
In the cliffs talus on the other side
And then in the far distant water splashed
But after time allowed for it to swim
INstead of proving human when it neared
And someone else additional to him
As a great buck it powerfully appeared
Pushinf the crumpled water up ahead
And landed pouring like a water fall
And stumbled throuh the rocks with horny tread
And forced the underbrush-and that was all



e.e. cummings
somewhere i have never travelled, gladly beyond

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




Linda Gregg
A Dark Thing Inside the Day

So many want to be lifted by song and dancing
and this morning it is easy to understand
I write in the sound of chirping birds hidden
in the almond trees, the almond still green
and thriving in the foliage Up the street
a man is hammering to make a new house as doves
continue their cooing forver. Bees humming
and high above that a brililant clear sky
The roses are blooming and I smell the sweetness
Everything desirable is here already in abundance
And the sea. THe dark thing is hardly visible
in the leaves, under the sheen. We sleep easily
So I bring no sad stories to warn the heart
All the flowers are adult this year. The good
world gives and the white doves praise all of it.


Sunset
TU FU


Suset glitters on the beads
Of the curtains. Spring flowers
Bloom in the valley. THe gardens
Along the river are filled
WIth perfume. Smoke of cooking
Fires drifts over the slow barges
Sparrows hop and tumble in
The branches. Whirling insects
Swarm in the air. Who discovered
The one cup of thick wine
Will dispel a thousand cares?

The Heart of Herakles
Kenneth Rexroth

Lying under the stars
In the summer night
Late, while autumn
Constellations climb the sky
As the cluster of hercules
falls down west
i put the telescope by
and watch deneb
move towards the zeneth
my body is asleep. Only
My eyes and brain are awake
The stars stand around me
Like gold eyes . I can no longer
Tell where i begin and leave off
The faint breeze in the dark pines
And the invisible grass
The tipping earth, swarming stars
Have and eye that sees itself



I am the Poet
Walt Whitman


I am the poet of reality
I say the earth is not an echoe
Nor man an apparation
But that all the things seen are real
The witness and albic dawn of things equally real
I have split the earth and the hard coal and rocks and the solid bed of the sea
And went down to reconnoitre there a long time
And bring back a report
And I understand that those are posiive and dense every one
Ant that what they seem to the child they are
And now that the world is not a joke
Nor any part of it a sham


Brazil, January 1, 1502
Elizabeth Bishop


Januararies, Nature greets our eyes
exactly as she must have greeted theirs
every square inch fililng in with foliage
big leaves, little leaves and giant leaves
blue blue green and olive
with occasional lighter veins and edges
or a satin underleaf turened over
monster fearns
in the silver gray releaf
and flowers too like giant water lilies
up in the air up rather in the leaves
purple yellow tow yellows pink
rust red and greenish white
solid but airy fresh as if just finised
and taken off the frame



PO CHÜ - I
Starting Early

Washed by the rain, dust and grime are laid
Skirting the river, the roads course is flat
The moon has risen on the last remnants of the night
THe travellers speed profits by the early cold
In the great silence I whisper a faint song
In the black darkness are bred somber thoughts
On the lotus bank hovers a dewy breeze
Through the rice furrows trickles a singing stream
At the noise of our bells a sleeping dog stirrs
At the sight of our tourches a roosting bird wakes
Dawn glimmers through the slopes of misty trees
For ten miles, till day at last breaks