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Poetry Month

As I was browsing from LJ to LJ ... I found that it was poetry month (because cicer talked about it). Therefore - a poem!

For some reason this poem always strikes me as almost feverishly intelligent. It's a meta-poem - it's about the form of poem that it actually is: a sonnet.

I will put Chaos into fourteen lines
And keep him there; and let him thence escape
If he be lucky; let him twist, and ape
Flood, fire, and demon --- his adroit designs
Will strain to nothing in the strict confines
Of this sweet order, where, in pious rape,
I hold his essence and amorphous shape,
Till he with Order mingles and combines.
Past are the hours, the years of our duress,
His arrogance, our awful servitude:
I have him. He is nothing more nor less
Than something simple not yet understood;
I shall not even force him to confess;
Or answer. I will only make him good.

-- Edna St. Vincent Millay

I snarfed the text from The Wondering Minstrels, my favorite poetry site, which includes Tolkien along with the usual suspects.

Comments

( 2 comments — Leave a comment )
theloomofmoira
Apr. 13th, 2007 05:13 pm (UTC)
what a wonderful poem. I hadn't heard that one of hers...
chomiji
Apr. 13th, 2007 09:38 pm (UTC)

It's funny, I've never been a huge poetry fan, but there's usually one poet at a time that I'm sweet on. Millay has been it for the last several years; before her, it was Gerard Manley Hopkins (!) and then A.E. Housman.

The Millay kick probably started when I read "Afternoon on a Hill" at my father's memorial service in 2002, a year after he died. He was a very enthusastic amateur naturalist, and was always just happier when he was outside, looking at plants or birds or puttering in the garden, but he was wheelchair-bound for the last couple of years of his life.

There's this one, too, for him, even thought it's actually about a girl:

Mindful of you the sodden earth in spring,
And all the flowers that in the springtime grow,
And dusty roads, and thistles, and the slow
Rising of the round moon, all throats that sing
The summer through, and each departing wing,
And all the nests that the bared branches show,
And all winds that in any weather blow,
And all the storms that the four seasons bring.

You go no more on your exultant feet
Up paths that only mist and morning knew,
Or watch the wind, or listen to the beat
Of a bird's wings too high in air to view,--
But you were something more than young and sweet
And fair,--and the long year remembers you.

- Cho

( 2 comments — Leave a comment )

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