Sunday Poem: William Morris – Love is enough

William Morris. 1834–1896
  
Love is enough
  
LOVE is enough: though the World be a-waning,  
And the woods have no voice but the voice of complaining,  
  Though the sky be too dark for dim eyes to discover  
The gold-cups and daisies fair blooming thereunder,  
Though the hills be held shadows, and the sea a dark wonder,          5
  And this day draw a veil over all deeds pass’d over,  
Yet their hands shall not tremble, their feet shall not falter;  
The void shall not weary, the fear shall not alter  
  These lips and these eyes of the loved and the lover.
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Sunday Poem: Henry Austin Dobson – A Garden Song

Henry Austin Dobson. b. 1840
  
A Garden Song
  
HERE in this sequester’d close  
Bloom the hyacinth and rose,  
Here beside the modest stock  
Flaunts the flaring hollyhock;  
Here, without a pang, one sees          5
Ranks, conditions, and degrees.  
 
All the seasons run their race  
In this quiet resting-place;  
Peach and apricot and fig  
Here will ripen and grow big;   10
Here is store and overplus,—  
More had not Alcinoüs!  
 
Here, in alleys cool and green,  
Far ahead the thrush is seen;  
Here along the southern wall   15
Keeps the bee his festival;  
All is quiet else—afar  
Sounds of toil and turmoil are.  
 
Here be shadows large and long;  
Here be spaces meet for song;   20
Grant, O garden-god, that I,  
Now that none profane is nigh,—  
Now that mood and moment please,—  
Find the fair Pierides!

Sunday Poem: Wilfrid Scawen Blunt – St. Valentine’s Day

Wilfrid Scawen Blunt. b. 1840
  
St. Valentine’s Day
  
TO-DAY, all day, I rode upon the down,
With hounds and horsemen, a brave company
On this side in its glory lay the sea,
On that the Sussex weald, a sea of brown.
The wind was light, and brightly the sun shone,          5
And still we gallop’d on from gorse to gorse:
And once, when check’d, a thrush sang, and my horse
Prick’d his quick ears as to a sound unknown.
  I knew the Spring was come. I knew it even
Better than all by this, that through my chase   10
In bush and stone and hill and sea and heaven
I seem’d to see and follow still your face.
Your face my quarry was. For it I rode,
My horse a thing of wings, myself a god.

Sunday Poem: John Boyle O’Reilly – A White Rose

John Boyle O’Reilly. 1844–1890
  
A White Rose
  
THE red rose whispers of passion,
  And the white rose breathes of love;
O the red rose is a falcon,
  And the white rose is a dove.
But I send you a cream-white rosebud          5
  With a flush on its petal tips;
For the love that is purest and sweetest
  Has a kiss of desire on the lips.

Sunday Poem: Robert Bridges – Nightingales

Robert Bridges. b. 1844
  
Nightingales
  
  BEAUTIFUL must be the mountains whence ye come,
  And bright in the fruitful valleys the streams, wherefrom
            Ye learn your song:
Where are those starry woods? O might I wander there,
  Among the flowers, which in that heavenly air          5
            Bloom the year long!
  Nay, barren are those mountains and spent the streams:
  Our song is the voice of desire, that haunts our dreams,
            A throe of the heart,
Whose pining visions dim, forbidden hopes profound,   10
  No dying cadence nor long sigh can sound,
            For all our art.
  Alone, aloud in the raptured ear of men
  We pour our dark nocturnal secret; and then,
            As night is withdrawn   15
From these sweet-springing meads and bursting boughs of May,
  Dream, while the innumerable choir of day
            Welcome the dawn.

Sunday Poem: Laurence Binyon – O World, be Nobler

Laurence Binyon. b. 1869
  
O World, be Nobler
  
O WORLD, be nobler, for her sake!
  If she but knew thee what thou art,
What wrongs are borne, what deeds are done
In thee, beneath thy daily sun,
  Know’st thou not that her tender heart          5
For pain and very shame would break?
O World, be nobler, for her sake!

Sunday Poem: Robert Louis Stevenson – Requiem

Robert Louis Stevenson. 1850–1894
  
Requiem
  
UNDER the wide and starry sky
Dig the grave and let me lie:
Glad did I live and gladly die,
  And I laid me down with a will.
This be the verse you grave for me:          5
Here he lies where he long’d to be;
Home is the sailor, home from sea,
  And the hunter home from the hill.

Sunday Poem: William Butler Yeats – Where My Books go

William Butler Yeats. b. 1865
  
Where My Books go
  
ALL the words that I utter,
  And all the words that I write,
Must spread out their wings untiring,
  And never rest in their flight,
Till they come where your sad, sad heart is,          5
  And sing to you in the night,
Beyond where the waters are moving,
  Storm-darken’d or starry bright.

Sunday Poem: Francis Thompson – The Poppy

Francis Thompson. 1859–1907
  
The Poppy
  
SUMMER set lip to earth’s bosom bare,
And left the flush’d print in a poppy there;
Like a yawn of fire from the grass it came,
And the fanning wind puff’d it to flapping flame.
With burnt mouth red like a lion’s it drank          5
The blood of the sun as he slaughter’d sank,
And dipp’d its cup in the purpurate shine
When the eastern conduits ran with wine.
Till it grew lethargied with fierce bliss,
And hot as a swinkèd gipsy is,   10
And drowsed in sleepy savageries,
With mouth wide a-pout for a sultry kiss.
A child and man paced side by side,
Treading the skirts of eventide;
But between the clasp of his hand and hers   15
Lay, felt not, twenty wither’d years.
She turn’d, with the rout of her dusk South hair,
And saw the sleeping gipsy there;
And snatch’d and snapp’d it in swift child’s whim,
With—’Keep it, long as you live!’—to him.   20
And his smile, as nymphs from their laving meres,
Trembled up from a bath of tears;
And joy, like a mew sea-rock’d apart,
Toss’d on the wave of his troubled heart.
For he saw what she did not see,   25
That—as kindled by its own fervency—
The verge shrivell’d inward smoulderingly:
And suddenly ‘twixt his hand and hers
He knew the twenty wither’d years—
No flower, but twenty shrivell’d years.   30
‘Was never such thing until this hour,’
Low to his heart he said; ‘the flower
Of sleep brings wakening to me,
And of oblivion memory.’
‘Was never this thing to me,’ he said,   35
‘Though with bruisèd poppies my feet are red!’
And again to his own heart very low:
‘O child! I love, for I love and know;
‘But you, who love nor know at all
The diverse chambers in Love’s guest-hall,   40
Where some rise early, few sit long:
In how differing accents hear the throng
His great Pentecostal tongue;
‘Who know not love from amity,
Nor my reported self from me;   45
A fair fit gift is this, meseems,
You give—this withering flower of dreams.
‘O frankly fickle, and fickly true,
Do you know what the days will do to you?
To your Love and you what the days will do,   50
O frankly fickle, and fickly true?
‘You have loved me, Fair, three lives—or days:
‘Twill pass with the passing of my face.
But where I go, your face goes too,
To watch lest I play false to you.   55
‘I am but, my sweet, your foster-lover,
Knowing well when certain years are over
You vanish from me to another;
Yet I know, and love, like the foster-mother.
‘So frankly fickle, and fickly true!   60
For my brief life-while I take from you
This token, fair and fit, meseems,
For me—this withering flower of dreams.’
.      .      .
The sleep-flower sways in the wheat its head,
Heavy with dreams, as that with bread:   65
The goodly grain and the sun-flush’d sleeper
The reaper reaps, and Time the reaper.
I hang ‘mid men my needless head,
And my fruit is dreams, as theirs is bread:
The goodly men and the sun-hazed sleeper   70
Time shall reap, but after the reaper
The world shall glean of me, me the sleeper!
Love! love! your flower of wither’d dream
In leavèd rhyme lies safe, I deem,
Shelter’d and shut in a nook of rhyme,   75
From the reaper man, and his reaper Time.
Love! I fall into the claws of Time:
But lasts within a leavèd rhyme
All that the world of me esteems—
My wither’d dreams, my wither’d dreams.   80

Sunday Poem: Robert Burns – Auld Lang Syne

Robert Burns. 1759–1796
Auld Lang Syne 


SHOULD auld acquaintance be forgot,
  And never brought to min’?
Should auld acquaintance be forgot,
  And days o’ lang syne?
We twa hae rin about the braes,          5
  And pu’d the gowans fine;
But we’ve wander’d monie a weary fit
  Sin’ auld lang syne.
We twa hae paidl’t i’ the burn,
  Frae mornin’ sun till dine;   10
But seas between us braid hae roar’d
  Sin’ auld lang syne.
And here ‘s a hand, my trusty fiere,
  And gie’s a hand o’ thine;
And we’ll tak a right guid-willie waught   15
  For auld lang syne.
And surely ye’ll be your pint-stowp,
  And surely I’ll be mine;
And we’ll tak a cup o’ kindness yet
  For auld lang syne!   20
      For auld lang syne, my dear,
        For auld lang syne,
      We’ll tak a cup o’ kindness yet
        For auld lang syne.