TT #11

5 April 2007

Because April is America’s National Poetry Month I thought I may as well celebrate this furrin-type event by listing 13 poems from either the The Rattle Bag or from Soundings, anthologies that we used in school.

  1. Snake by D.H. Lawrence

    He lifted his head from his drinking, as cattle do,
    And looked at me vaguely, as drinking cattle do,
    And flickered his two-forked tongue from his lips, and mused a moment,
    And stooped and drank a little more,

  2. Pangur Bán anon

    I and Pangur Bán, my cat
    ‘Tis a like task we are at;
    Hunting mice is his delight
    Hunting words I sit all night.

  3. Praise of a collie by Norman MacCaig

    Once, gathering sheep on a showery day,
    I remarked how dry she was. Pollochan said, “Ah,
    It would take a very accurate drop to hit Lassie.”

  4. The Shooting of Dan McGrew by Robert Service

    And a woman screamed, and the lights went up, and two men lay stiff and stark.
    Pitched on his head, and pumped full of lead, was Dangerous Dan McGrew,

  5. War God’s Horse Song – anon

    Before me peaceful,
    Behind me peaceful,
    Under me peaceful,
    Over me peaceful,
    All around me peaceful–
    Peaceful voice when he neighs.

  6. Surprised by joy by William Wordsworth

    Surprised by joy — impatient as the Wind
    I turned to share the transport–Oh! with whom
    But Thee, deep buried in the silent tomb,
    That spot which no vicissitude can find?

  7. The Windhover by Gerard Manley Hopkins

    Brute beauty and valour and act, oh, air, pride, plume, here
    Buckle! AND the fire that breaks from thee then, a billion
    Times told lovelier, more dangerous, O my chevalier!

  8. Because I could no stop for death by Emily Dickinson

    Because I could not stop for Death,
    He kindly stopped for me;
    The carriage held but just ourselves
    And Immortality.

  9. Paradise Lost by John Milton

    The mind is its own place, and in it self
    Can make a Heav’n of Hell, a Hell of Heav’n.

  10. Inniskeen Road: July Evening – Patrick Kavanagh

    The bicycles go by in twos and threes –
    There’s a dance in Billy Brennan’s barn to-night,
    And there’s the half-talk code of mysteries
    And the wink-and-elbow language of delight.

  11. Ode on a Grecian Urn – John Keats

    When old age shall this generation waste,
    Thou shalt remain, in midst of other woe
    Than ours, a friend to man, to whom thou say’st,
    ‘Beauty is truth, truth beauty,—that is all
    Ye know on earth, and all ye need to know.

  12. To His Coy Mistress by Shakespeare

    But at my back I always hear
    Time’s wingèd chariot hurrying near;
    And yonder all before us lie
    Deserts of vast eternity.

  13. The Second Coming – WB Yeats

    Turning and turning in the widening gyre
    The falcon cannot hear the falconer;
    Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold;
    Mere anarchy is loosed upon the world,
    The blood-dimmed tide is loosed, and everywhere
    The ceremony of innocence is drowned;
    The best lack all conviction, while the worst
    Are full of passionate intensity.
    Surely some revelation is at hand;
    Surely the Second Coming is at hand.
    The Second Coming! Hardly are those words out
    When a vast image out of Spritus Mundi
    Troubles my sight: somewhere in the sands of the desert
    A shape with lion body and the head of a man,
    A gaze blank and pitiless as the sun,
    Is moving its slow thighs, while all about it
    Reel shadows of the indignant desert birds.
    The darkness drops again; but now I know
    That twenty centuries of stony sleep
    were vexed to nightmare by a rocking cradle,
    And what rough beast, its hour come round at last,
    Slouches towards Bethlehem to be born?

  14. And, now that you’ve read all that you can answer one of the Leaving Cert questions from 1997 (pdf)

    Links to other Thursday Thirteens!

  1. Everybody lies
  2. The Flatland Almanack
  3. Too many ideas
  4. (leave your link in comments, I’ll add you here!)

Get the Thursday Thirteen code here!

The purpose of the meme is to get to know everyone who participates a little bit better every Thursday. Visiting fellow Thirteeners is encouraged! If you participate, leave the link to your Thirteen in others comments. It’s easy, and fun! Be sure to update your Thirteen with links that are left for you, as well! I will link to everyone who participates and leaves a link to their 13 things. Trackbacks, pings, comment links accepted!

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7 Responses

  1. laurie says:

    ah, i don't know what memes are or the thursday thirteen but i enjoyed those poems. i love patrick kavanaugh. and there was a time in my weird-ass youth when i thought robert w. service was a poet.

    i posted a poem the other day on my family blog. it's here:

    i love it because the oler i get, the less i like parties, and this poem spoke to me.

  2. Fence says:

    Memes are just those things that go round the blogosphere, (great definition!) and the Thursday Thirteen is a weekly meme that loads of people do. Basically it just consists of listing thirteen things, whatever you want, every thursday.

  3. samulli says:

    An interesting selection of poems. Love the Emily Dickinson. My favorite Yeats is "When you are old", though. Most of the others I have never heard before, but then I can't really say I know much poetry at all.

    "How many loved your moments of glad grace,

    And loved your beauty with love false or true;

    But one man loved the pilgrim soul in you,

    And loved the sorrows of your changing face."

  4. weenie says:

    There was only one poem that I liked and learned off by heart from school – just couldn't get my head round all the others…

    Some say the world will end in fire,

    Some say in ice.

    From what I’ve tasted of desire

    I hold with those who favour fire.

    But if it had to perish twice,

    I think I know enough of hate

    To know that for destruction ice

    Is also great

    And would suffice.

  5. Harlequin says:

    Oh, Soundings! I loved that book.

    Poems I know off by heart – Yeats' An Irish Airman Foresees His Death, Lake Isle of Innisfree and The Stolen Child, Wordsworth's I wandered lonely as a cloud, Frost's Stopping by woods on a snowy evening, Kavanagh's Stony Grey Soil, de la Mare's The Listeners… There must be more but I can't think of them now.

    Guess who I met this morning, on the way up to my exam? Jenny! She's thinking of going to the reunion but may be busy. We had a lovely chat.

  6. Damozel says:

    You have posted at least five of my favorites…a great selection; I love it in the D.H. Lawrence poem when he frightens the snake and then is embarrassed for himself and it. Love the Yeats as well….and several things new to me; I'll have to explore them

  7. A very nice selection of poems.