|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.
- 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,
- Pangur BÃ¡n anon
I and Pangur BÃ¡n, my cat
‘Tis a like task we are at;
Hunting mice is his delight
Hunting words I sit all night.
- 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.”
- 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,
- 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.
- Surprised by joy by William Wordsworth
Surprised by joy â€” 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?
- 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!
- 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
- 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.
- 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.
- 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,â€”that is all
Ye know on earth, and all ye need to know.
- To His Coy Mistress by Shakespeare
But at my back I always hear
Time’s wingÃ¨d chariot hurrying near;
And yonder all before us lie
Deserts of vast eternity.
- 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?
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!
- Everybody lies
- The Flatland Almanack
- Too many ideas
- (leave your link in comments, Iâ€™ll add you here!)