Poetry

Visual arts, music, poetry and other forms of art.
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Mimesis
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Re: Poetry

Postby Mimesis » Tue Dec 05, 2017 3:45 am

Hroan of the Ceri Forest (Part Three)
Richard Moult


In her onying, she was called to leave before dawn
To pass the Rubicon of Long Pike Hollow
With an ash crucifix held beneath her black pilch

Years had passed since wanderings on Rhos y Beddau
Where once the hills had opened their faces
To shew her the within
And her screams were relinquished, unheard
Into the roar of the clouds

And so finally led here, to the forest
She lets go into its deeper night:

Overhead, Seren y Pegwyn, through the branch mesh
Ahead, the cloisters between the pines
Beneath, slept upon by layers of soil and rocks
A vessel which no fox would unearth

“No further,” spoke the night-pressed air
Which concealed the birds
Who beheld from their own country, unveiled and unknowable;
Yet they would meet with us in the borderlands –
But always our striving turned us away
To pour fire upon fire

Of the realms savage in being, we can be of them
An exile to a house made for us by the branches
And remain, ever deeper into forgetting

Or, turn our eyes above, a fraction of a dream before we fall
Our city made for us by the stars which rush to conjoin
And remain, ever deeper into forgetting

In her onying, crucifix-held
No severance – nothing lost or left behind:
The way of paradox unfolded forever before her

As Sol woke Autumn in the leaves, the angel stood waiting
Transfigured, she touched its outstretched hand
And in the dawn and the gentlest of breezes
Both disappeared
"We are such stuff. As dreams are made on, and our little life. Is rounded with a sleep."
obnoxion
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Re: Poetry

Postby obnoxion » Fri Dec 08, 2017 8:08 pm

The Stone Goddess
Sri Aurobindo

In a town of gods, housed in a little shrine,
From sculptured limbs the Godhead looked at me,–
A living Presence deathless and divine,
A Form that harboured all infinity.

The great World-Mother and her mighty will
Inhabited the earth’s abysmal sleep,
Voiceless, omnipotent, inscrutable,
Mute in the desert and the sky and deep.

Now veiled with mind she dwells and speaks no word,
Voiceless, inscrutable, omniscient,
Hiding until our soul has seen, has heard
The secret of her strange embodiment,

One in the worshipper and the immobile shape,
A beauty and mystery flesh or stone can drape.


(Some background to the poem: “Once when Sri Aurobindo was on a visit to Chandod he went to one of the temples of Kali on the bank of the Narmada. He went there because of the company. He never had felt attracted to image-worship—if anything, till then he was averse to it. Now when he went to the temple he found a presence in the image. He got a direct proof of the truth that can be behind image-worship” http://savitri.in/library/resources/poe ... et-time-18).
One day of Brahma has 14 Indras; his life has 54 000 Indras. One day of Vishnu is the lifetime of Brahma. The lifetime of Vishnu is one day of Shiva.
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Heith
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Re: Poetry

Postby Heith » Sat Dec 09, 2017 3:50 pm

The Vampire
By Madison Julius Cawein

A lily in a twilight place?
A moonflow'r in the lonely night?—
Strange beauty of a woman's face
Of wildflow'r-white!

The rain that hangs a star's green ray
Slim on a leaf-point's restlessness,
Is not so glimmering green and gray
As was her dress.

I drew her dark hair from her eyes,
And in their deeps beheld a while
Such shadowy moonlight as the skies
Of Hell may smile.

She held her mouth up redly wan,
And burning cold,—I bent and kissed
Such rosy snow as some wild dawn
Makes of a mist.

God shall not take from me that hour,
When round my neck her white arms clung!
When 'neath my lips, like some fierce flower,
Her white throat swung!

Or words she murmured while she leaned!
Witch-words, she holds me softly by,—
The spell that binds me to a fiend
Until I die.
obnoxion
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Re: Poetry

Postby obnoxion » Wed Dec 13, 2017 6:41 pm

Oh you, the moon-crested
Lord of the living breath,
when you touch me suddenly
after the long pain of separation,
My consciousness -
a doll carved of moon-stone -
melts and melts away.


Abhinavagupta
One day of Brahma has 14 Indras; his life has 54 000 Indras. One day of Vishnu is the lifetime of Brahma. The lifetime of Vishnu is one day of Shiva.
obnoxion
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Re: Poetry

Postby obnoxion » Fri Dec 15, 2017 1:18 pm

A. P. Sinnett (whom you might remember from our Mahatma letters -thread) once wrote a short treatise of how he considered Lord Tennyson to be a genuine occultist. Here is, however, a less rarified sigh on behalf of the mankind, often pharaphrased by friends of humanity, both secret and public:

O purblind race of miserable men,
How many of us at this very hour
Do forge a lifelong trouble for ourselves,
By taking true for false, and false for true;
Here, thro' the feeble twilight of this world
Groping, how many, until we pass reach
That other where we see as we are seen!

From "The Idylls of the Kings: Gerait and Enid"
One day of Brahma has 14 Indras; his life has 54 000 Indras. One day of Vishnu is the lifetime of Brahma. The lifetime of Vishnu is one day of Shiva.
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Mimesis
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Re: Poetry

Postby Mimesis » Mon Jan 08, 2018 2:59 am

Through Death to Love
Dante Gabriel Rossetti


Like labour-laden moonclouds faint to flee
From winds that sweep the winter-bitten wold,—
Like multiform circumfluence manifold
Of night's flood-tide,—like terrors that agree
Of hoarse-tongued fire and inarticulate sea,—
Even such, within some glass dimm'd by our breath,
Our hearts discern wild images of Death,
Shadows and shoals that edge eternity.

Howbeit athwart Death's imminent shade doth soar
One Power, than flow of stream or flight of dove
Sweeter to glide around, to brood above.
Tell me, my heart,—what angel-greeted door
Or threshold of wing-winnow'd threshing-floor
Hath guest fire-fledg'd as thine, whose lord is Love?
"We are such stuff. As dreams are made on, and our little life. Is rounded with a sleep."
obnoxion
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Re: Poetry

Postby obnoxion » Tue Jan 09, 2018 2:55 pm

Omoksha wrote:Through Death to Love
Dante Gabriel Rossetti


Like labour-laden moonclouds faint to flee
From winds that sweep the winter-bitten wold,—
Like multiform circumfluence manifold
Of night's flood-tide,—like terrors that agree
Of hoarse-tongued fire and inarticulate sea,—
Even such, within some glass dimm'd by our breath,
Our hearts discern wild images of Death,
Shadows and shoals that edge eternity.

Howbeit athwart Death's imminent shade doth soar
One Power, than flow of stream or flight of dove
Sweeter to glide around, to brood above.
Tell me, my heart,—what angel-greeted door
Or threshold of wing-winnow'd threshing-floor
Hath guest fire-fledg'd as thine, whose lord is Love?
I have often imagined the scene of Rossetti's represenratives exhuming by night the grave of Elizabeth Siddal, to retrieve the worm-eaten copy of his poems, put in Siddals coffin at her burial seven years ago. It sums up many important Pre-Raphaelite themes, parhaps most importantly the corporeality of symbolism.

"Through Death to Love" is a lovely, lovely poem. I especially enjoy the reference the threshing-floor. For an Old Testament -enthusiast such as I, it is a image that is deep with meaning.
One day of Brahma has 14 Indras; his life has 54 000 Indras. One day of Vishnu is the lifetime of Brahma. The lifetime of Vishnu is one day of Shiva.
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Mimesis
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Re: Poetry

Postby Mimesis » Fri Jan 12, 2018 3:27 am

obnoxion wrote:
I have often imagined the scene of Rossetti's represenratives exhuming by night the grave of Elizabeth Siddal, to retrieve the worm-eaten copy of his poems, put in Siddals coffin at her burial seven years ago. It sums up many important Pre-Raphaelite themes, parhaps most importantly the corporeality of symbolism.
Very much so. I find Elizabeth Siddal quite fascinating. She occupies tremendous corporeal symbolism for the Pre-Raphaelites, perhaps in both her life and her death. As the model for so much of their painting, and definitely the subject and motives behind a lot of Rossetti's poetry, she almost shaped the face of a whole movement.
"We are such stuff. As dreams are made on, and our little life. Is rounded with a sleep."
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Mimesis
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Re: Poetry

Postby Mimesis » Fri Jan 12, 2018 3:39 am

The Agonie
George Herbert


Philosophers have measur'd mountains,
Fathom'd the depths of the seas, of states, of kings,
Walk'd with a staffe to heav'n, and traced fountains:
But there are two vast, spacious things,
The which to measure it doth more behove:
Yet few there are that sound them; Sinne and Love.

Who would know Sinne, let him repair
Unto Mount Olivet; there shall he see
A man so wrung with pains, that all his hair,
His skinne, his garments bloudie be.
Sinne is that presse and vice, which forceth pain
To hunt his cruell food through ev'ry vein.

Who knows not Love, let him assay
And taste that juice, which on the crosse a pike
Did set again broach; then let him say
If ever he did taste the like.
Love is that liquour sweet and most divine,
Which my God feels as bloud; but I, as wine.


(* Sadly I cannot write this out with the correct indents for the poems rhythm, and there is nowhere online that I can find which correctly lays them out, to therefore post a link to. It should be read with the first of every three lines indented)
"We are such stuff. As dreams are made on, and our little life. Is rounded with a sleep."
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Heith
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Re: Poetry

Postby Heith » Thu Jan 18, 2018 10:10 am

The Vampire
Conrad Aiken, 1899 - 1973


She rose among us where we lay.
She wept, we put our work away.
She chilled our laughter, stilled our play;
And spread a silence there.
And darkness shot across the sky,
And once, and twice, we heard her cry;
And saw her lift white hands on high
And toss her troubled hair.

What shape was this who came to us,
With basilisk eyes so ominous,
With mouth so sweet, so poisonous,
And tortured hands so pale?
We saw her wavering to and fro,
Through dark and wind we saw her go;
Yet what her name was did not know;
And felt our spirits fail.

We tried to turn away; but still
Above we heard her sorrow thrill;
And those that slept, they dreamed of ill
And dreadful things:
Of skies grown red with rending flames
And shuddering hills that cracked their frames;
Of twilights foul with wings;

And skeletons dancing to a tune;
And cries of children stifled soon;
And over all a blood-red moon
A dull and nightmare size.
They woke, and sought to go their ways,
Yet everywhere they met her gaze,
Her fixed and burning eyes.

Who are you now, —we cried to her—
Spirit so strange, so sinister?
We felt dead winds above us stir;
And in the darkness heard
A voice fall, singing, cloying sweet,
Heavily dropping, though that heat,
Heavy as honeyed pulses beat,
Slow word by anguished word.

And through the night strange music went
With voice and cry so darkly blent
We could not fathom what they meant;
Save only that they seemed
To thin the blood along our veins,
Foretelling vile, delirious pains,
And clouds divulging blood-red rains
Upon a hill undreamed.

And this we heard: “Who dies for me,
He shall possess me secretly,
My terrible beauty he shall see,
And slake my body’s flame.
But who denies me cursed shall be,
And slain, and buried loathsomely,
And slimed upon with shame.”

And darkness fell. And like a sea
Of stumbling deaths we followed, we
Who dared not stay behind.
There all night long beneath a cloud
We rose and fell, we struck and bowed,
We were the ploughman and the ploughed,
Our eyes were red and blind.

And some, they said, had touched her side,
Before she fled us there;
And some had taken her to bride;
And some lain down for her and died;
Who had not touched her hair,
Ran to and fro and cursed and cried
And sought her everywhere.

“Her eyes have feasted on the dead,
And small and shapely is her head,
And dark and small her mouth," they said,
“And beautiful to kiss;
Her mouth is sinister and red
As blood in moonlight is.”

Then poets forgot their jeweled words
And cut the sky with glittering swords;
And innocent souls turned carrion birds
To perch upon the dead.
Sweet daisy fields were drenched with death,
The air became a charnel breath,
Pale stones were splashed with red.

Green leaves were dappled bright with blood
And fruit trees murdered in the bud;
And when at length the dawn
Came green as twilight from the east,
And all that heaving horror ceased,
Silent was every bird and beast,
And that dark voice was gone.

No word was there, no song, no bell,
No furious tongue that dream to tell;
Only the dead, who rose and fell
Above the wounded men;
And whisperings and wails of pain
Blown slowly from the wounded grain,
Blown slowly from the smoking plain;
And silence fallen again.

Until at dusk, from God knows where,
Beneath dark birds that filled the air,
Like one who did not hear or care,
Under a blood-red cloud,
An aged ploughman came alone
And drove his share through flesh and bone,
And turned them under to mould and stone;
All night long he ploughed.

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