Tuesday, February 17, 2009

The Love of Poetry

Sabrina is upstairs listening to a CD of poetry that came with a book of poetry we recently purchased. I had forgotten how much I love poetry. So often in my life certain phrases of poems ring in my mind as I live their lines. 

I think I will have to spend some time this week rediscovering some of my favorite poems. I will share one of my favorites with you here. Perhaps if you have a favorite poem you can leave it in a comment to share with the rest of us.

My Grandfather Bunker loved Shakespeare. He passed this love down to his daughters and from my mother and him I also developed a love for it. One of my favorite of his sonnets is the 29th. It reminds me how richly I am blessed by the love of the Lord, the love of my husband, the love of my family, and the love of all those who have gone before me, my grandfather included.

This one is for you Grandad.

SONNET XXIX

XXIX

1. When in disgrace with fortune and men's eyes
2. I all alone beweep my outcast state,
3. And trouble deaf heaven with my bootless cries,
4. And look upon myself, and curse my fate,
5. Wishing me like to one more rich in hope,
6. Featured like him, like him with friends possessed,
7. Desiring this man's art, and that man's scope,
8. With what I most enjoy contented least;
9. Yet in these thoughts my self almost despising,
10. Haply I think on thee, and then my state,
11. Like to the lark at break of day arising
12. From sullen earth, sings hymns at heaven's gate;
13. For thy sweet love remembered such wealth brings
14. That then I scorn to change my state with kings.

8 comments:

Dawn, said...

I painted this on the wall of our mudroom, so we see it everytime we enter our home...

Thoughts, rest your wings.
Here is a hollow of silence,
a nest of stillness,
in which to hatch your dreams.

-Joan Walsh Anglund

It helps me decompress, reminds me I'm home... being home is the best place to be!

Amanda said...

This one is my all time favorite:

Desiderata (Things to be desired)

Go placidly amid the noise and haste, and remember what peace there may be in silence.
As far as possible without surrender be on good terms with all persons.

Speak your truth quietly and clearly; and listen to others,
even the dull and the ignorant;
they too have their story.
Avoid loud and aggressive persons,
they are vexations to the spirit.

If you compare yourself with others, you may become vain and bitter; for always there will be greater and lesser persons than yourself.

Enjoy your achievements as well as your plans. Keep interested in your own career, however humble;
it is a real possession in the changing fortunes of time.

Exercise caution in your business affairs; for the world is full of trickery. But let this not blind you to what virtue there is;
many persons strive for high ideals; and everywhere life is full of heroism.
Be yourself.

Especially, do not feign affection.
Neither be cynical about love;
for in the face of all aridity and disenchantment it is as perennial as the grass.

Take kindly the counsel of the years, gracefully surrendering the things of youth.

Nurture strength of spirit to shield you in sudden misfortune.
But do not distress yourself with dark imaginings. Many fears are born of fatigue and loneliness.

Beyond a wholesome discipline,
be gentle with yourself.
You are a child of the universe,
no less than the trees and the stars; you have a right to be here.
And whether or not it is clear to you, no doubt the universe is unfolding as it should.

Therefore be at peace with God,
whatever you conceive Him to be,
and whatever your labors and aspirations, in the noisy confusion of life keep peace with your soul.

With all its sham, drudgery, and broken dreams, it is still a beautiful world.

Be cheerful.

Strive to be happy.

-Max Ehrmann

Xazmin said...

Your posts inspire me...that's why I've given you an award! Come by when you can and check it out!

Bacardi Mama said...

My son-in-law just had his fourth book of poetry released. We are quite proud of him. You can check him out on Amazon or Barnes and Noble.com. His name is Ryan Fredric Steinbeck and his latest book is called One House Left Standing.

{Katie Lane} said...

Great poem. I love your header!

sherrie said...

Poetry has played a vital role in my life and motherhood. My precious daughter loved and memorized this poem when she was 10, and now, 15 years later, it is sure to have new meaning to her as she makes her way back from being "almost gone". I know it does for me.

THE TOUCH OF THE MASTER'S HAND
by Myra Brooks Welch

'Twas battered and scarred, and the auctioneer
Thought it scarcely worth his while
To waste much time on the old violin,
But held it up with a smile:
"What am I bidden, good folks," he cried,
"Who'll start the bidding for me?"
"A dollar, a dollar"; then "Two!" "Only two?
Two dollars, and who'll make it three?
Three dollars, once; three dollars, twice;
going for three---" But no,
From the room, far back, a gray-haired man
Came forward and picked up the bow;
Then, wiping the dust from the old violin,
And tightening the loose strings,
He played a melody pure and sweet
As a caroling angel sings.

The music ceased, and the auctioneer,
With a voice that was quiet and low,
Said: "What am I bid for the old violin?"
And he held it up with the bow.
"A thousand dollars, and who'll make it two?
Two thousand! And who'll make it three?
Three thousand, once, three thousand twice,
And going, and gone," said he.
The people cheered, but some of them cried,
We do not quite understand
What changed its worth." Swift came the reply:
"The touch of the master's hand."

And many a man with life out of tune,
And battered and scarred with sin,
Is auctioned cheap to the thoughtless crowd,
Much like the old violin.
A "mess of pottage," a glass of wine;
A game -- and he travels on.
He is "going" once, "going" twice,
He's "going" and almost "gone."
But the Master comes, and the foolish crowd
Never can quite understand
The worth of a soul and the change that's wrought
By the touch of the Master's hand.

Tanielle said...

Your posts are amazing, and make me want to be better in all areas of my life. The poem was beautiful!!

Amanda said...

This is my favorite - Grammy used to quote it to us all the time.

You
Edgar Guest

You are the fellow that has to decide
Whether you'll do it or toss it aside.
You are the fellow who makes up your mind
Whether you'll lead or will linger behind
Whether you'll try for the goal that's afar
Or just be contented to stay where you are.
Take it or leave it. Here's something to do!
Just think it over --- It's all up to you!

What do you wish? To be known as a shirk,
Known as a good man who's willing to work,
Scorned for a loafer or praised by your chief,
Rich man or poor man or beggar or thief?
Eager or earnest or dull through the day,
Honest or crooked? It's you who must say!
You must decide in the face of the test
Whether you'll shirk it or give it your best.

Nobody here will compel you to rise;
No one will force you to open your eyes;
No one will answer for you yes or no,
Whether to stay there or whether to go.
Life is a game, but it's you who must say,
Whether as cheat or as sportsman you'll play.
Fate may betray you, but you settle first
Whether to live to your best or your worst.

So, whatever it is you are wanting to be,
Remember, to fashion the choice you are free.
Kindly or selfish, or gentle or strong,
Keeping the right way or taking the wrong,
Careless of honor or guarding your pride,
All these are questions which you must decide.
Yours the selection, whichever you do;
The thing men call character's all up to you!