Up'ards

'Twere getting dusk, one winter's night,
When up the clough there came in sight,
A lad who carried through the snow,
A banner with this 'ere motto...
'Uppards'

His face was glum as he did pass,
His eyes were shiny... just like glass,
And as he went upon his way,
He nobbut this 'ere word did say...
'Uppards'

And people sitting down to tea,
They heard him plan, as plain can be,
They thowt 'twere final football score,
As this 'ere word rang out once more...
'Uppards'


Up at a Villa--Down in the City

Had I but plenty of money, money enough and to spare,
The house for me, no doubt, were a house in the city-square;
Ah, such a life, such a life, as one leads at the window there!

Something to see, by Bacchus, something to hear, at least!
There, the whole day long, one's life is a perfect feast;
While up at a villa one lives, I maintain it, no more than a beast.

Well now, look at our villa! stuck like the horn of a bull
Just on a mountain-edge as bare as the creature's skull,


Unto This Last

They brought my fair love out upon a bier—
Out from the dwelling that her smile made sweet,
Out from the life that her life made complete,
Into the glitter of the garish street—
And no man wept, save I, for that dead dear.
And then the dark procession wound along,
Like a black serpent with a snow-white bird
Held in its fangs. I think God said a word
To death, as He in His chill heaven heard
Her voice so sweeter than His seraph’s song.

And so Death took away her flower-sweet breath


Untitled 1

I gladly would sing in a joyous strain,
But my heart of its joy is bereft;
For my young life there is nought but grief and pain,
And a haunting memory left.
Look at the stars how they gleam from the skies
On me with a frosty stare;
Can it be that this world hath no pitying eyes
For the houseless child of care?
Ye that look on me have homes tonight,
And loving ones wait you there;
And the cheerful fire is burning bright,
And young faces are beaming fair.
Though a thousand homes are around I know


Untimely Love

Peace, throbbing heart, nor let us shed one tear
O'er this late love's unseasonable glow;
Sweet as a violet blooming in the snow,
The posthumous offspring of the widowed year
That smells of March when all the world is sere,
And, while around the hurtling sea-winds blow--
Which twist the oak and lay the pine tree low--
Stands childlike in the storm and has no fear.

Poor helpless blossom orphaned of the sun,
How could it thus brave winter's rude estate?
Oh love, more helpless, why bloom so late,


Underground System

Set the foot down with distrust upon the crust of the
world—it is thin.
Moles are at work beneath us; they have tunneled the
sub-soil
With separate chambers; which at an appointed knock
Could be as one, could intersect and interlock. We walk
on the skin
Of life. No toil
Of rake or hoe, no lime, no phosphate, no rotation of
crops, no irrigation of the land,
Will coax the limp and flattened grain to stand
On that bad day, or feed to strength the nibbled root's of
our nation.


Under The Balcony

O beautiful star with the crimson mouth!
O moon with the brows of gold!
Rise up, rise up, from the odorous south!
And light for my love her way,
Lest her little feet should stray
On the windy hill and the wold!
O beautiful star with the crimson mouth!
O moon with the brows of gold!

O ship that shakes on the desolate sea!
O ship with the wet, white sail!
Put in, put in, to the port to me!
For my love and I would go
To the land where the daffodils blow
In the heart of a violet dale!


Tz'u No. 13

To the tune of "Song of Peace"

Year by year, in the snow,
I have often gathered plum flowers,
intoxicated with their beauty.
Fondling them impudently
I got my robe wet with their lucid tears.

This year I have drifted to the corner
of the sea and the edge
of the horizon,
My temples have turned grey.

Judging by the gust of the evening wind,
It is unlikely I will again
enjoy the plum blossoms.


Tract

I will teach you my townspeople
how to perform a funeral
for you have it over a troop
of artists-
unless one should scour the world-
you have the ground sense necessary.

See! the hearse leads.
I begin with a design for a hearse.
For Christ's sake not black-
nor white either - and not polished!
Let it be whethered - like a farm wagon -
with gilt wheels (this could be
applied fresh at small expense)
or no wheels at all:
a rough dray to drag over the ground.

Knock the glass out!


To the Reader

As you read, a white bear leisurely
pees, dyeing the snow
saffron,

and as you read, many gods
lie among lianas: eyes of obsidian
are watching the generations of leaves,

and as you read
the sea is turning its dark pages,
turning
its dark pages.


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