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The Forum's Favourite Poems

Discussion in 'Entertainment' started by Withnail, Apr 25, 2010.

  1. Withnail

    Withnail Well-Known Forumite

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    as freedom is a breakfastfood
    or truth can live with right and wrong
    or molehills are from mountains made
    -long enough and just so long
    will being pay the rent of seem
    and genius please the talentgang
    and water most encourage flame

    as hatracks into peachtrees grow
    or hopes dance best on bald men's hair
    and every finger is a toe
    and any courage is a fear
    -long enough and just so long
    will the impure think all things pure
    and hornets wail by children stung

    or as the seeing are the blind
    and robins never welcome spring
    nor flatfolk prove their world is round
    nor dingsters die at break of dong
    and common's rare and millstones float
    -long enough and just so long
    tomorrow will not be too late

    worms are the words but joy's the voice
    down shall go which and up come who
    breasts will be breasts and thighs will be thighs
    deeds cannot dream what dreams can do
    -time is a tree (this life one leaf)
    but love is the sky and i am for you
    just so long and long enough

    p.1940

    e. e. cummings
     
  2. Wookie

    Wookie Official Forum Linker

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    Philip Larkin - This Be The Verse

    They f* you up, your mum and dad.
    They may not mean to, but they do.
    They fill you with the faults they had
    And add some extra, just for you.

    But they were f*ed up in their turn
    By fools in old-style hats and coats,
    Who half the time were soppy-stern
    And half at one another's throats.

    Man hands on misery to man.
    It deepens like a coastal shelf.
    Get out as early as you can,
    And don't have any kids yourself.
     
  3. Withnail

    Withnail Well-Known Forumite

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    The Lake Isle Of Innisfree

    I will arise and go now, and go to Innisfree,
    And a small cabin build there, of clay and wattles made:
    Nine bean-rows will I have there, a hive for the honey-bee,
    And live alone in the bee-loud glade.

    And I shall have some peace there, for peace comes dropping slow,
    Dropping from the veils of the mourning to where the cricket sings;
    There midnight's all a glimmer, and noon a purple glow,
    And evening full of the linnet's wings.

    I will arise and go now, for always night and day
    I hear lake water lapping with low sounds by the shore;
    While I stand on the roadway, or on the pavements grey,
    I hear it in the deep heart's core.

    p.1893

    W. B. YEATS
     
  4. Gramaisc

    Gramaisc Forum O. G.

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  5. Alan B'Stard

    Alan B'Stard Well-Known Forumite

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    An interesting poetical take on the election.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X92f7H1vrJU
     
  6. John Marwood

    John Marwood I ♥ cryptic crosswords

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    Gideon
    The Destroyer
    Has an arse
    On the end of his nose

    Not to be sniffed at
    That
     
  7. Withnail

    Withnail Well-Known Forumite

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    Tommy

    I went into a public-'ouse to get a pint o' beer,
    The publican 'e up an' sez, "We serve no red-coats here."
    The girls be'ind the bar they laughed an' giggled fit to die,
    I outs into the street again an' to myself sez I:
    O it's Tommy this, an' Tommy that, an' "Tommy, go away";
    But it's "Thank you, Mister Atkins", when the band begins to play,
    The band begins to play, my boys, the band begins to play,
    O it's "Thank you, Mister Atkins", when the band begins to play.

    I went into a theatre as sober as could be,
    They gave a drunk civilian room, but 'adn't none for me;
    They sent me to the gallery or round the music-'alls,
    But when it comes to fightin', Lord! they'll shove me in the stalls!
    For it's Tommy this, an' Tommy that, an' "Tommy, wait outside";
    But it's "Special train for Atkins" when the trooper's on the tide,
    The troopship's on the tide, my boys, the troopship's on the tide,
    O it's "Special train for Atkins" when the trooper's on the tide.

    Yes, makin' mock o' uniforms that guard you while you sleep
    Is cheaper than them uniforms, an' they're starvation cheap;
    An' hustlin' drunken soldiers when they're goin' large a bit
    Is five times better business than paradin' in full kit.
    Then it's Tommy this, an' Tommy that, an' "Tommy, 'ow's yer soul?"
    But it's "Thin red line of 'eroes" when the drums begin to roll,
    The drums begin to roll, my boys, the drums begin to roll,
    O it's "Thin red line of 'eroes" when the drums begin to roll.

    We aren't no thin red 'eroes, nor we aren't no blackguards too,
    But single men in barricks, most remarkable like you;
    An' if sometimes our conduck isn't all your fancy paints,
    Why, single men in barricks don't grow into plaster saints;
    While it's Tommy this, an' Tommy that, an' "Tommy, fall be'ind",
    But it's "Please to walk in front, sir", when there's trouble in the wind,
    There's trouble in the wind, my boys, there's trouble in the wind,
    O it's "Please to walk in front, sir", when there's trouble in the wind.

    You talk o' better food for us, an' schools, an' fires, an' all:
    We'll wait for extry rations if you treat us rational.
    Don't mess about the cook-room slops, but prove it to our face
    The Widow's Uniform is not the soldier-man's disgrace.
    For it's Tommy this, an' Tommy that, an' "Chuck him out, the brute!"
    But it's "Saviour of 'is country" when the guns begin to shoot;
    An' it's Tommy this, an' Tommy that, an' anything you please;
    An' Tommy ain't a bloomin' fool -- you bet that Tommy sees!

    p.1892

    RUDYARD KIPLING
     
  8. John Marwood

    John Marwood I ♥ cryptic crosswords

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    Hens eggs
    Mens egos
    Throw them now
    Spinning
    through the air
    falling
    tumbling
    cascading
    crashing
    cracking
    at Westminster under fire

    We demand more
    The lion speaks
    from ouside the shell
     
  9. John Marwood

    John Marwood I ♥ cryptic crosswords

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    The Internet Breatheliser is way way overdue
     
  10. Withnail

    Withnail Well-Known Forumite

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    Losses

    It was not dying: everybody died.
    It was not dying: we had died before
    In the routine crashes-- and our fields
    Called up the papers, wrote home to our folks,
    And the rates rose, all because of us.
    We died on the wrong page of the almanac,
    Scattered on mountains fifty miles away;
    Diving on haystacks, fighting with a friend,
    We blazed up on the lines we never saw.
    We died like aunts or pets or foreigners.
    (When we left high school nothing else had died
    For us to figure we had died like.)

    In our new planes, with our new crews, we bombed
    The ranges by the desert or the shore,
    Fired at towed targets, waited for our scores--
    And turned into replacements and woke up
    One morning, over England, operational.
    It wasn't different: but if we died
    It was not an accident but a mistake
    (But an easy one for anyone to make).
    We read our mail and counted up our missions--
    In bombers named for girls, we burned
    The cities we had learned about in school--
    Till our lives wore out; our bodies lay among
    The people we had killed and never seen.
    When we lasted long enough they gave us medals;
    When we died they said, "Our casualties were low."
    They said, "Here are the maps"; we burned the cities.

    It was not dying --no, not ever dying;
    But the night I died I dreamed that I was dead,
    And the cities said to me: "Why are you dying?
    We are satisfied, if you are; but why did I die?"

    p.1948

    RANDALL JARRELL
     
  11. Gramaisc

    Gramaisc Forum O. G.

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    Perhaps the Forum could insitute a feature similar to Gmail Goggles.
     
  12. John Marwood

    John Marwood I ♥ cryptic crosswords

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    Not a solution for my Rioja Bowlocks unfortunately.. I am surprised that no one has come up with a better idea though

    Perhaps something along the lines of ( an internet version of )the olde School Fete thingy whereby you had to, with a steady hand, guide a metal loop along a meandering wire and if you did not keep it steady it rang a bell and you lost a chance of winning a grand prize

    To be put in place after 6pm weekdays and 3pm weekends and Bank Holidays?
     
  13. basil

    basil don't mention the blinds

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    It's always 6pm...... somewhere...........
     
  14. John Marwood

    John Marwood I ♥ cryptic crosswords

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    is it?

    in India we used to be 5 and a half hours ahead of Greenwich,

    I think
     
  15. Withnail

    Withnail Well-Known Forumite

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    Rain

    There are holes in the sky.
    Where the rain gets in.
    But they're ever so small.
    That's why the rain is thin.

    p.1973

    SPIKE MILLIGAN
     
  16. John Marwood

    John Marwood I ♥ cryptic crosswords

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    damn,

    brilliant

    how was

    he?
     
  17. Withnail

    Withnail Well-Known Forumite

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    The Crowd at the Ball Game

    The crowd at the ball game
    is moved uniformly

    by a spirit of uselessness
    which delights them —

    all the exciting detail
    of the chase

    and the escape, the error
    the flash of genius —

    all to no end save beauty
    the eternal -

    So in detail they, the crowd,
    are beautiful

    for this
    to be warned against

    saluted and defied —
    It is alive, venomous

    it smiles grimly
    its words cut —

    The flashy female with her
    mother, gets it —

    The Jew gets it straight - it
    is deadly, terrifying —

    It is the Inquisition, the
    Revolution

    It is beauty itself
    that lives

    day by day in them
    idly —

    This is
    the power of their faces

    It is summer, it is the solstice
    the crowd is

    cheering, the crowd is laughing
    in detail

    permanently, seriously
    without thought

    p. 1923

    WILLIAM CARLOS WILLIAMS
     
  18. Withnail

    Withnail Well-Known Forumite

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    r-p-o-p-h-e-s-s-a-g-r

    r-p-o-p-h-e-s-s-a-g-r
    who
    a)s w(e loo)k
    upnowgath
    PPEGORHRASS
    eringint(o-
    aThe):l
    eA
    !p:
    S a
    (r
    rIvInG .gRrEaPsPhOs)
    to
    rea(be)rran(com)gi(e)ngly
    ,grasshopper;

    p. ? (20's or 30's?)

    e. e. cummings
     
  19. Withnail

    Withnail Well-Known Forumite

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    Ballad About Drinking
    To V. Chernykh

    We had slaughtered a hundred white whales,
    civilization was quite forgotten,
    our lungs were burned out from smoking shag,
    but on sighting port we blew out our chests like barrels
    and began to speak to one another politely,
    and with the noble goal of drinking
    we went ashore from the schooner at Amderma.

    In Amderma we walked like gods,
    swaggering along with our hands on our hips,
    and through the port our beards and sidewhiskers
    kept their bearings on the pub,
    and passing girls and shellbacks
    as well as all the local dogs
    went along with us as escort.

    But, clouding the whole planet,
    a notice hung in the shop: 'No Spirits! '
    We looked at some sparkling wine from the Don
    as if it were feeble fruit juice,
    and through our agonized yearning
    we realized - it wouldn't work.

    Now who could have drunk our spirits, our vodka?
    It's dreadful the way people drink - simply ruinous.
    But skinny as a skeleton, Petka Markovsky from Odessa,
    as it always happens with him,
    suddenly disappeared somewhere
    giving a secretive 'Sh - sshh! '

    And shortly afterward, with much clinking,
    he turned up with a huge cardboard box,
    already slightly merry,
    and it was a sweet clinking the box made
    as we woke up to the fact: 'There she is! She's apples! '
    and Markovsky gave us the wink: 'She's right! '

    We made a splash, waving to everyone -
    Chartered a deluxe room in the hotel
    and sat down as we were on the bed.
    Cords flew off the box
    and there, in the glittering columns of the bottles,
    bulging, stern, cosy,
    absolutely hygienic -
    triple-distilled eau de cologne stood before us!

    And Markovsky rose, lifting his glass,
    pulled down his seaman's jacket,
    and began: 'I'd like to say something...'
    'Then say it! ' everyone began to shout.
    But before anything else
    they wanted to wet their whistles.

    Markovsky said: 'Come on - let's have a swig!
    The doctor told me eau de cologne
    is the best thing to keep the wrinkles away.
    Let them judge us! - We don't give a damn!
    We used to drink all sorts of wine!
    When we were in Germany
    we filled the radiators of our tanks
    with wine from the Mosel.

    We don't need consumer goods!
    We need the wind, the sky!
    Old mates, listen to this
    in our souls, as though in the safe deposit:
    We have the sea, our mothers and young brothers-
    All the rest...is rubbish! '

    Bestriding the earth like a giant,
    Markovsky stood with a glass in his hand
    that held the foaming seas.
    The skipper observed: 'Everything is shipshape! '
    and only the boatswain sobbed like a child:
    'But my mother is dead...'

    And we all began to burst into tears,
    quite easily, quite shamelessly,
    as if in the midst of our own families,
    mourning with bitter tears
    at first for the boatswain's mother,
    and afterward simply for ourselves.

    Already a rueful notice hung in the chemist's shop -
    'No Triple Eau de Cologne' -
    but eight of us sea wolves
    sobbed over almost all of Russia!
    And in our sobs we reeked
    like eight barbershops.

    Tears, like squalls,
    swept away heaps of false values,
    of puffed-up names,
    and quietly remaining inside us
    was only the sea, our mothers and young brothers -
    even the mother who was dead...

    I wept as though I was being set free,
    I wept as if I was being born anew,
    a different person from what I'd been,
    and before God and before myself,
    like the tears of those drunken whalemen,
    my soul was pure.


    p.1964

    Translated by Tina Tupikina-Glaessner, Geoffrey Dutton, and Igor Mezhakoff-Koriakin (revised)

    YEVGENY YEVTUSHENKO
     
  20. Withnail

    Withnail Well-Known Forumite

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    Twat

    JOHN COOPER CLARKE
     

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