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Beagle

Do you have a favourite poem?

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One from me, not a classic, but following the death of my dog in April I want to share this

 

Image result for farewell to my dog poem

 

 

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I keep coming back to Richard Hugo's "Glen Uig" lately.

 

 

Believe in this couple this day who come
to picnic in the Faery Glen. They pay rain

no matter, or wind. They spread their picnic

under a gale-stunted rowan. Believe they grew tired

of giants and heroes and know they believe

in wise tiny creatures who live under the rocks.

 

Believe these odd mounds, the geologic joke

played by those wise tiny creatures far from

the world’s pitiful demands: make money, stay sane.

Believe the couple, by now soaked to the skin,

sing their day as if dry, as if sheltered inside

Castle Ewen. Be glad Castle Ewen’s only a rock

that looks like a castle. Be glad for no real king.

 

These wise tiny creatures, you’d better believe,

have lived through it all: the Viking occupation,

clan torturing clan, the Clearances, the World War

II bomber gone down, a fiery boom

on Beinn Edra. They saw it from here. They heard

the sobs of last century’s crofters trail off below

where every day the Conon sets out determined for Uig.

They remember the Viking who wandered off course,

under the hazelnut tree hating aloud all he’d done.

 

Some days dance in the bracken. Some days go out

wide and warm on bad roads to collect the dispossessed

and offer them homes. Some days celebrate addicts

sweet in their dreams and hope to share with them

a personal spectrum. The loch here’s only a pond,

the monster is in it small as a wren.

 

Believe the couple who have finished their picnic

and make wet love in the grass, the tiny wise creatures

cheering them on. Believe in milestones, the day

you left home forever and the cold open way

a world wouldn’t let you come in. Believe you

and I are that couple. Believe you and I sing tiny

and wise and could if we had to eat stone and go on.

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On 5/23/2017 at 6:21 AM, Beagle said:

One from me, not a classic, but following the death of my dog in April I want to share this

 

I'm so sorry for your loss.

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On 23-5-2017 at 1:21 PM, Beagle said:

One from me, not a classic, but following the death of my dog in April I want to share this

 

Image result for farewell to my dog poem

 

 

 

As a dog owner, I understand your pain.

 

Good poem!

 

My sympathies man!

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15 hours ago, Marvin said:

I keep coming back to Richard Hugo's "Glen Uig" lately.

 

 

Haven't read that before Marvin. I love it

15 hours ago, Pingo said:

 

I'm so sorry for your loss.

 

15 hours ago, Xherman1964 said:

 

As a dog owner, I understand your pain.

 

Good poem!

 

My sympathies man!

Thanks, not over it yet, I was very close to that dog. His legacy is that he helped over a hundred lab-test dogs find their feet and start to normalize. I do and will continue to miss him terribly.

 

Xherman - will reply to your PM soon

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Word's going around that Denis Johnson has passed at 67. Haven't gotten solid confirmation of it though. Hoping it's fake news.

 

First writer who ever really blew my mind, made me want to write something great. No book probably ever has had an effect on me like Jesus' Son.

 

 

Sway

 

Since I find you will no longer love,
from bar to bar in terror I shall move
past Forty-third and Halsted, Twenty-fourth
and Roosevelt where fire-gutted cars,
their bones the bones of coyote and hyena,
suffer the light from the wrestling arena
to fall all over them. And what they say
blends in the tarantellasmic sway
of all of us between the two of these:
harmony and divergence,
their sad story of harmony and divergence,
the story that begins
I did not know who she was
and ends I did not know who she was.

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22 hours ago, Beagle said:

Haven't read that before Marvin. I love it

 

Thanks, not over it yet, I was very close to that dog. His legacy is that he helped over a hundred lab-test dogs find their feet and start to normalize. I do and will continue to miss him terribly.

 

Xherman - will reply to your PM soon

 

I will be out of the country as per tuesday. Will be back end of June.

Very little chance of visiting the Forum during that time..

 

Stay well!

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It depends entirely on my mood and the moment - but it seems I am more likely to delve into the likes of Service, London, or C. Fox Smith -

A Yarn of Dan's - C. Fox Smith

 

'Now 'ere's a yarn as is true,' said Dan,

'An' you can't say that o' most:
I was in the packet Mogador
an' bound to the Chile coast,
An' there was a chap in the watch wi' me - a greaser from Brazil -
An' 'is name it was Pedro (or Josey, maybe), but we mostly called 'im Bill.

An' 'e was the rottenest sort of a bloke in the sailorizin' line
As ever you see in your life - leastways, as ever I see in mine:
'E couldn't pull 'is weight on a rope, 'e could neither reef nor furl,
I give you my word in a gale o' wind 'e was worse nor a seasick girl.

The mate we 'ad was a down-east Yank, an' 'e was sure a terror,
'E fairly wallered in paint an' pitch, an' that's no fatal error.
It was 'olystonin' an' scourin' paint an' keepin' brasswork bright,
An' chippin' anchors an' scrapin' seams, from mornin' until night.

Well, me an' Bill we was tarrin' down on the crojick yard one day,
The packet snorin' along like fun an' shippin' dollops o' spray,
An' Bill 'e slumped 'is bucket o' tar, which was just what you might expeck,
'Arf of it over a brand-new course an' the rest on the fresh-scoured deck.

The mate 'e let a roar like a bull when 'e seen what Bill 'ad done
As fetched the 'ole o' the watch below on deck to see the fun,
An' 'e jumped for the shrouds an' started aloft with a face that was fit to kill,
An' into the drink with a flop an' a splash an' a Dago yell went Bill.

The mate 'e squinted over the rail an' saw Bill swimmin' strong,
An' 'e started kickin' 'is seaboots off, an' that didn't take him long,
An' over the rail in a brace o' shakes in all the rest of 'is gear
'E follered Bill like a streak o' light - an' you should 'ave 'eard us cheer!

The Old Man passed the word along to 'eave the packet to,
'I can't afford for to lose my mate, an' a thunderin' good mate too,
So lower away the quarter boat, an' pull, my lads, with a will,
But I'm darned if I'd lower a boat,' says he, 'for a lump o' stuff like Bill.'

Well we lowered the boat, an' we pulled away, but that ain't part o' the yarn,
An' we picked 'em off o' the buoy we'd throwed, best part of a mile astern:
The mate 'e'd got Bill's 'ead in 'is arm in a kind of a strangle 'old,
With 'is fingers twisted into 'is wool as if 'e'd been stuffed with gold.

We hauled 'em in by the slack o' their pants, an' as soon's we'd got 'em aboard
The mate 'e blew a bubble or two an' 'e got 'is breath an' roared:
'I'll larn ye spilin' my deck, ye swab, - by thunder so I will!'…
An' they give 'im a pair o' binoculars along o' savin' Bill!'

 

C. Fox Smith started writing poems when she was in her teens.

 

The Auld Grump

 

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Well, I've never been good with poems, as I am more the quote person, but back in school I had to learn some poems, and especially "The Earlking" made an impression on me. I tried to find a good translation, but the only one I found was on Wikipedia.

 

Have a look:

 

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Erlkönig_(Goethe)

 

//

 

And of course, a lover of Science Fiction and the questions of life, the universe and everything - the Cloths of Heaven by W.B. Yeats

 

 

The Cloths of Heaven

 

Had I the heaven's embroidered cloths,
Enwrought with golden and silver light,
The blue and the dim and the dark cloths
Of night and light and the half-light;
I would spread the cloths under your feet:
But I, being poor, have only my dreams;
I have spread my dreams under your feet;
Tread softly because you tread on my dreams.

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Now, time for something completely different.

Groo The Wanderer #15 by Sergio Aragonés

 

There never was a hero
 Who was quite as dumb as Groo.
His I.Q. totaled zero,
 Give or take a point or two.
When there was trouble to the West
 Then Groo would Sally forth.
And Hurry off to do his best
 Directly to the North.
A maiden was once captured
 By a dragon for a feast.
And Groo was so enraptured,
 He killed her and kissed the beast.
And yet, his life's an open book,
 The kind that really grabs you.
That is if you can overlook,
 How many times he stabs you.

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The Cremation of Sam McGee - Robert Service

 

There are strange things done in the midnight sun
      By the men who moil for gold;
The Arctic trails have their secret tales
      That would make your blood run cold;
The Northern Lights have seen queer sights,
      But the queerest they ever did see
Was that night on the marge of Lake Lebarge
      I cremated Sam McGee.
 
Now Sam McGee was from Tennessee, where the cotton blooms and blows.
Why he left his home in the South to roam 'round the Pole, God only knows.
He was always cold, but the land of gold seemed to hold him like a spell;
Though he'd often say in his homely way that "he'd sooner live in hell."
 
On a Christmas Day we were mushing our way over the Dawson trail.
Talk of your cold! through the parka's fold it stabbed like a driven nail.
If our eyes we'd close, then the lashes froze till sometimes we couldn't see;
It wasn't much fun, but the only one to whimper was Sam McGee.
 
And that very night, as we lay packed tight in our robes beneath the snow,
And the dogs were fed, and the stars o'erhead were dancing heel and toe,
He turned to me, and "Cap," says he, "I'll cash in this trip, I guess;
And if I do, I'm asking that you won't refuse my last request."
 
Well, he seemed so low that I couldn't say no; then he says with a sort of moan:
"It's the cursèd cold, and it's got right hold till I'm chilled clean through to the bone.
Yet 'tain't being dead—it's my awful dread of the icy grave that pains;
So I want you to swear that, foul or fair, you'll cremate my last remains."
 
A pal's last need is a thing to heed, so I swore I would not fail;
And we started on at the streak of dawn; but God! he looked ghastly pale.
He crouched on the sleigh, and he raved all day of his home in Tennessee;
And before nightfall a corpse was all that was left of Sam McGee.
 
There wasn't a breath in that land of death, and I hurried, horror-driven,
With a corpse half hid that I couldn't get rid, because of a promise given;
It was lashed to the sleigh, and it seemed to say: "You may tax your brawn and brains,
But you promised true, and it's up to you to cremate those last remains."
 
Now a promise made is a debt unpaid, and the trail has its own stern code.
In the days to come, though my lips were dumb, in my heart how I cursed that load.
In the long, long night, by the lone firelight, while the huskies, round in a ring,
Howled out their woes to the homeless snows— O God! how I loathed the thing.
 
And every day that quiet clay seemed to heavy and heavier grow;
And on I went, though the dogs were spent and the grub was getting low;
The trail was bad, and I felt half mad, but I swore I would not give in;
And I'd often sing to the hateful thing, and it hearkened with a grin.
 
Till I came to the marge of Lake Lebarge, and a derelict there lay;
It was jammed in the ice, but I saw in a trice it was called the "Alice May."
And I looked at it, and I thought a bit, and I looked at my frozen chum;
Then "Here," said I, with a sudden cry, "is my cre-ma-tor-eum."
 
Some planks I tore from the cabin floor, and I lit the boiler fire;
Some coal I found that was lying around, and I heaped the fuel higher;
The flames just soared, and the furnace roared—such a blaze you seldom see;
And I burrowed a hole in the glowing coal, and I stuffed in Sam McGee.
 
Then I made a hike, for I didn't like to hear him sizzle so;
And the heavens scowled, and the huskies howled, and the wind began to blow.
It was icy cold, but the hot sweat rolled down my cheeks, and I don't know why;
And the greasy smoke in an inky cloak went streaking down the sky.
 
I do not know how long in the snow I wrestled with grisly fear;
But the stars came out and they danced about ere again I ventured near;
I was sick with dread, but I bravely said: "I'll just take a peep inside.
I guess he's cooked, and it's time I looked"; ... then the door I opened wide.
 
And there sat Sam, looking cool and calm, in the heart of the furnace roar;
And he wore a smile you could see a mile, and he said: "Please close that door.
It's fine in here, but I greatly fear you'll let in the cold and storm—
Since I left Plumtree, down in Tennessee, it's the first time I've been warm."
 
There are strange things done in the midnight sun
      By the men who moil for gold;
The Arctic trails have their secret tales
      That would make your blood run cold;
The Northern Lights have seen queer sights,
      But the queerest they ever did see
Was that night on the marge of Lake Lebarge
      I cremated Sam McGee
 
The Auld Grump
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I think this is stuck in a lot of minds, right now - and as fitting as it was in 1919.

 

The Second Coming

 

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 Spiritus Mundi
Troubles my sight: somewhere in 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?

 

- W.B. Yeats

 

The Auld Grump - years and years ago, I used the poem as a basis for a Call of Cthulhu game.

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Not one to seek out poetry but this one sparked an idea that is part of the fabric of my life. Note that it is part of a much longer poem though I might have just found that out today...

 

 

Auguries of Innocence

To see a World in a Grain of Sand 
And a Heaven in a Wild Flower 
Hold Infinity in the palm of your hand 
And Eternity in an hour

 

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Not a favorite poem but a favorite poet.  I am lucky enough to have had countless conversations with the poet Dr. Eugene Redmond.  He was one of favorite customers when I worked in retail. 

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