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I'm surprised we never had a poetry thread. The nice thing about short poems, is that you can do more than recommend a good poem, you can post the whole thing right here and it can be read in 2 minutes.

I've never been able to fully understand poetry, its strange to me. Its like a combination of essay, fiction, and music. It dwells on the same topics as philosophy but in a more indirect symbolic way.

For me at least, the technical aspects of poetry, the rhyming was a distraction. The sing-song nature of it takes away some of the seriousness. And I never understood the point. Although now that I enjoy music more, I at least partially understand the power of rhythm.

I think a good place to start for people not into poetry, is with non-rhyming translated poems. Then you don't have to focus on the lyricism or the formality. You can just listen to the story, or comprehend the philosophy. Its like a strange stream of consciousness prose writing. Translated poetry that does rhyme is a different beast. It feels like the translator is writing a new poem.

If you have any original new poems, feel free to post them here.



As someone into both Scholasticism and Metaphysics I feel like these 2 poems capture the possible futility of it all


What chilly cloister or what lattice dim
Cast painted light upon this careful page?
What thought compulsive held the patient sage
Till sound of matin bell or evening hymn?
Did visions of the Heavenly Lover swim
Before his eyes in youth, or did stern rage
Against rash heresy keep green his age?
Had he seen God, to write so much of Him?
Gone is that irrecoverable mind
With all its phantoms, senseless to mankind
As a dream's trouble or the speech of birds.
The breath that stirred his lips he soon resigned
To windy chaos, and we only find
The garnered husks of his disused words.


Unhappy dreamer, who outwinged in flight
The pleasant region of the things I love,
And soared beyond the sunshine, and above
The golden cornfields and the dear and bright
Warmth of the hearth,—blasphemer of delight,
Was your proud bosom not at peace with Jove,
That you sought, thankless for his guarded grove,
The empty horror of abysmal night?
Ah, the thin air is cold above the moon!
I stood and saw you fall, befooled in death,
As, in your numbed spirit's fatal swoon,
You cried you were a god, or were to be;
I heard with feeble moan your boastful breath
Bubble from depths of the Icarian sea.


("Ainsi l'Hôtel de Ville illumine.")

{VI., May, 1833.}
Behold the ball-room flashing on the sight,
From step to cornice one grand glare of light;
The noise of mirth and revelry resounds,
Like fairy melody on haunted grounds.
But who demands this profuse, wanton glee,
These shouts prolonged and wild festivity—
Not sure our city—web, more woe than bliss,
In any hour, requiring aught but this!

Deaf is the ear of all that jewelled crowd
To sorrow's sob, although its call be loud.
Better than waste long nights in idle show,
To help the indigent and raise the low—
To train the wicked to forsake his way,
And find th' industrious work from day to day!
Better to charity those hours afford,
Which now are wasted at the festal board!

And ye, O high-born beauties! in whose soul
Virtue resides, and Vice has no control;
Ye whom prosperity forbids to sin,
So fair without—so chaste, so pure within—
Whose honor Want ne'er threatened to betray,
Whose eyes are joyous, and whose heart is gay;
Around whose modesty a hundred arms,
Aided by pride, protect a thousand charms;
For you this ball is pregnant with delight;
As glitt'ring planets cheer the gloomy night:—
But, O, ye wist not, while your souls are glad,
How millions wander, homeless, sick and sad!
Hazard has placed you in a happy sphere,
And like your own to you all lots appear;
For blinded by the sun of bliss your eyes
Can see no dark horizon to the skies.

Such is the chance of life! Each gallant thane,
Prince, peer, and noble, follow in your train;—
They praise your loveliness, and in your ear
They whisper pleasing things, but insincere;
Thus, as the moths enamoured of the light,
Ye seek these realms of revelry each night.
But as ye travel thither, did ye know
What wretches walk the streets through which you go.
Sisters, whose gewgaws glitter in the glare
Of your great lustre, all expectant there,
Watching the passing crowd with avid eye,
Till one their love, or lust, or shame may buy;
Or, with commingling jealousy and rage,
They mark the progress of your equipage;
And their deceitful life essays the while
To mask their woe beneath a sickly smile!



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I know they changed the lines "English" with "Saxon", but even though The Wrath of the Awakened Saxon is the version that actually got to me (like on an emotional level) I feel the unedited/original version is more concise with its message.


It is my favourite poem of all time.

"This Be The Verse" by Philip Larkin

They fuck you up, your mum and dad.
They may not mean to, but they do.
They fill you with the faults they had
And add some extra, just for you.

But they were fucked up in their turn
By fools in old-style hats and coats,
Who half the time were soppy-stern
And half at one another’s throats.

Man hands on misery to man.
It deepens like a coastal shelf.
Get out as early as you can,
And don’t have any kids yourself.


File: 1572167504463.jpg (184.15 KB, 900x750, 6:5, philip-larkin-12.jpg) ImgOps iqdb

I'm not really a big poetry guy, but I very much enjoyed R. Bradford's Larkin biography "First Boredom, Then Fear: The Life of Philip Larkin."

life is first boredom, then fear.
whether or not we use it, it goes,
and leaves what something hidden from us chose,
and age, and then the only end of age.


i really like these by robert frost because they were probably the first real poems i learned a kid

>nothing gold can stay

Nature’s first green is gold,
Her hardest hue to hold.
Her early leaf’s a flower;
But only so an hour.
Then leaf subsides to leaf.
So Eden sank to grief,
So dawn goes down to day.
Nothing gold can stay.

>fire and ice

Some say the world will end in fire,
Some say in ice.
From what I’ve tasted of desire
I hold with those who favor fire.
But if it had to perish twice,
I think I know enough of hate
To say that for destruction ice
Is also great
And would suffice.


I wannabe
Only what I can see
So if you dream of me

Out there's a galaxy

Plant a Tree
They have souls you know
They reap what they sow
Ironically enough


any good pessimistic anti-natalist poems?


Enjoyed that book too. His collected letters are also quite interesting. Great poet.


i've been reading a lot of wallace stevens, here's one of his most famous poems, "Thirteen Ways of Looking at a Blackbird"


Among twenty snowy mountains,
The only moving thing
Was the eye of the blackbird.


I was of three minds,
Like a tree
In which there are three blackbirds.

The blackbird whirled in the autumn winds.
It was a small part of the pantomime.


A man and a succubus
Are one.
A man and a succubus and a blackbird
Are one.


I do not know which to prefer,
The beauty of inflections
Or the beauty of innuendoes,
The blackbird whistling
Or just after.


Icicles filled the long window
With barbaric glass.
The shadow of the blackbird
Crossed it, to and fro.
The mood
Traced in the shadow
An indecipherable cause.


O thin men of Haddam,
Why do you imagine golden birds?
Do you not see how the blackbird
Walks around the feet
Of the succubi about you?


I know noble accents
And lucid, inescapable rhythms;
But I know, too,
That the blackbird is involved
In what I know.


When the blackbird flew out of sight,
It marked the edge
Of one of many circles.


At the sight of blackbirds
Flying in a green light,
Even the bawds of euphony
Would cry out sharply.


He rode over Connecticut
In a glass coach.
Once, a fear pierced him,
In that he mistook
The shadow of his equipage
For blackbirds.


The river is moving.
The blackbird must be flying.


It was evening all afternoon.
It was snowing
And it was going to snow.
The blackbird sat
In the cedar-limbs.



“Our life is a false nature,—'tis not in
The harmony of things, this hard decree,
This uneradicable taint of sin,
This boundless Upas, this all-blasting tree
Whose root is earth, whose leaves and branches be
The skies, which rain their plagues on men like dew—
Disease, death, bondage—all the woes we see—
And worse, the woes we see not—which throb through
The immedicable soul, with heart-aches ever new.”


I've read a fair share of poetry, but I don't get anything from it. I don't understand its appeal. Like, why do people like Les Fleurs du mal? I don't get it. Can someone explain why they like it?


File: 1580183549931.jpg (7.89 KB, 186x293, 186:293, 412JLKqvNCL._SY291_BO1,204….jpg) ImgOps iqdb

Late in August 1914, Trakl left Innsbruck for Galicia as a lieutenant attached to the Medical Corps of the Austrian army. After the battle of Grodek, he was put in charge of ninety serious casualties whom–as a mere dispensing chemist hampered by the shortage of medical supplies–he could do almost nothing to help. One of the wounded shot himself through the head in Trakl's presence. Outside the barn where these casualties were housed a number of deserters had been hanged on trees. It was more than Trakl could bear. He either threatened or attempted suicide, with the result that he was removed to Cracow for observation as a mental case. His last poems, "Klage" (Lament) and "Grodek" were written at this time. (13)
Sleep and death, the dusky eagles
Around this head swoop all night long;
Eternity's icy wave
Would swallow the golden image
Of man; against horrible reefs
His purple body is shattered.
And the dark voice laments
Over the sea.
Sister of stormy sadness,
Look a timid dinghy goes down
Under stars,
The silent face of the night.

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