Your Poem

My poem may be yours indeed
In melody and tone,
If in its rhythm you can read
A music of your own;
If in its pale woof you can weave
Your lovelier design,
'Twill make my lyric, I believe,
More yours than mine.

I'm but a prompter at the best;
Crude cues are all I give.
In simple stanzas I suggest -
'Tis you who make them live.
My bit of rhyme is but a frame,
And if my lines you quote,
I think, although they bear my name,
'Tis you who wrote.

Written In Australia

THE WIDE sun stares without a cloud:
Whipped by his glances truculent
The earth lies quivering and cowed.
My heart is hot with discontent:
I hate this haggard continent.

But over the loping leagues of sea
A lone land calls to her children free:
My own land holding her arms to me—
But oh, the long loping leagues of sea.

Why Do Birds Sing

Let poets piece prismatic words,
Give me the jewelled joy of birds!

What ecstasy moves them to sing?
Is it the lyric glee of Spring,
The dewy rapture of the rose?
Is it the worship born in those
Who are of Nature's self a part,
The adoration of the heart?

Is it the mating mood in them
That makes each crystal note a gem?
Oh mocking bird and nightingale,
Oh mavis, lark and robin - hail!
Tell me what perfect passion glows
In your inspired arpeggios?

When the Dark Comes Down

When the dark comes down, oh, the wind is on the sea
With lisping laugh and whimper to the red reef's threnody,
The boats are sailing homeward now across the harbor bar
With many a jest and many a shout from fishing grounds afar.
So furl your sails and take your rest, ye fisher folk so brown,
For task and quest are ended when the dark comes down.

Turns and Movies Rose and Murray

After the movie, when the lights come up,
He takes her powdered hand behind the wings;
She, all in yellow, like a buttercup,
Lifts her white face, yearns up to him, and clings;
And with a silent, gliding step they move
Over the footlights, in familiar glare,
Panther-like in the Tango whirl of love,
He fawning close on her with idiot stare.
Swiftly they cross the stage. O lyric ease!
The drunken music follows the sure feet,
The swaying elbows, intergliding knees,
Moving with slow precision on the beat.

To My Enemy

Let those who will of friendship sing,
And to its guerdon grateful be,
But I a lyric garland bring
To crown thee, O, mine enemy!

Thanks, endless thanks, to thee I owe
For that my lifelong journey through
Thine honest hate has done for me
What love perchance had failed to do.

I had not scaled such weary heights
But that I held thy scorn in fear,
And never keenest lure might match
The subtle goading of thy sneer.

To My Brothers

O BROTHERS, who must ache and stoop
O’er wordy tasks in London town,
How scantly Laura trips for you—
A poem in a gown!
How rare if Grub-street grew a lawn!
How sweet if Nature’s lap could spare
A dandelion for the Strand,
A cowslip for Mayfair!

To Erinna

Was Time not harsh to you, or was he kind,
O pale Erinna of the perfect lyre,
That he has left no word of singing fire
Whereby you waked the dreaming Lesbian wind,
And kindled night along the lyric shore?
O girl whose lips Erato stooped to kiss,
Do you go sorrowing because of this
In fields where poets sing forevermore?
Or are you glad and is it best to be
A silent music men have never heard,
A dream in all our souls that we may say:
"Her voice had all the rapture of the sea,

The Wood Pool

Here is a voice that soundeth low and far
And lyric­voice of wind among the pines,
Where the untroubled, glimmering waters are,
And sunlight seldom shines.

Elusive shadows linger shyly here,
And wood-flowers blow, like pale, sweet spirit-bloom,
And white, slim birches whisper, mirrored clear
In the pool's lucent gloom.

Here Pan might pipe, or wandering dryad kneel
To view her loveliness beside the brim,
Or laughing wood-nymphs from the byways steal
To dance around its rim.

Pages

Subscribe to RSS - lyric