Sunday, December 31, 2006

Another Round of Link Updating

Ring Out, Wild Bells

Ring Out, Wild Bells

    (In Memoriam, CVI)

    Ring out, wild bells, to the wild sky,
    The flying cloud, the frosty light;
    The year is dying in the night;
    Ring out, wild bells, and let him die.

    Ring out the old, ring in the new,
    Ring, happy bells, across the snow:
    The year is going, let him go;
    Ring out the false, ring in the true.

    Ring out the grief that saps the mind,
    For those that here we see no more,
    Ring out the feud of rich and poor,
    Ring in redress to all mankind.

    Ring out a slowly dying cause,
    And ancient forms of party strife;
    Ring in the nobler modes of life,
    With sweeter manners, purer laws.

    Ring out the want, the care the sin,
    The faithless coldness of the times;
    Ring out, ring out my mournful rhymes,
    But ring the fuller minstrel in.

    Ring out false pride in place and blood,
    The civic slander and the spite;
    Ring in the love of truth and right,
    Ring in the common love of good.

    Ring out old shapes of foul disease,
    Ring out the narrowing lust of gold;
    Ring out the thousand wars of old,
    Ring in the thousand years of peace.

    Ring in the valiant man and free,
    The larger heart, the kindlier hand;
    Ring out the darkenss of the land,
    Ring in the Christ that is to be.

    --Alfred, Lord Tennyson

Some January Poems

Saturday, December 30, 2006

Poetry Discoveries of 2006

Rob's done a year-end round-up.

I'm not going to attempt anything as structured as his; my list will be of poets I first read (at least seriously) and especially liked during 2006, with books of theirs I read. In absolutely no particular order.

Sandor Csoori, Before and After the Fall: New Poems
Shuntaro Tanakawa, Selected Poems
Agnes Nemes Nagy, The Night of Akhenaton: Selected Poems
Daniel Hoffman, Beyond Silence: Selected Shorter Poems 1948 - 2003 and Makes You Stop and Think: Sonnets
Robert Wrigley, Earthly Meditations: New and Selected Poems
Laure-Anne Bosselaar, Small Gods of Grief
Brigit Pegeen Kelly, Song and The Orchard
Tony Hoagland, What Narcissism Means to Me and Hard Rain
Bob Hicok, Animal Soul
Arthur Sze, The Redshifting Web: Poems 1970 - 1998
Al Purdy, Beyond Remembering: The Collected Poems of Al Purdy
Irving Layton, A Wild Peculiar Joy: The Selected Poems
Anne Simpson, Loop
Don McKay, Field Marks: The Poetry of Don McKay and Strike/Slip
Lorna Crozier, Angels of Flesh, Angels of Silence and What The Living Won't Let Go
Roddy Lumsden, Mischief Night: New and Selected Poems
Geoffrey Hill, The Orchards of Syon


And one more, a special case, because there are apparently no full-lengths collections of her work available yet in English

Eva Gerlach,some of whose work can be found in English translation here

Sunday, December 24, 2006

The Burning Babe

    As I in hoary winter's night stood shiv'ring in the snow,
    Surprised I was with sudden heat which made my heart to glow;
    And lifting up a fearful eye to view what fire was near,
    A pretty babe all burning bright did in the air appear;
    Who, scorchëd with excessive heat, such floods of tears did shed
    As though his floods should quench his flames which with his tears were fed.
    Alas, quoth he, but newly born in fiery heats I fry,
    Yet none approach to warm their hearts or feel my fire but I!
    My faultless breast the furnace is, the fuel wounding thorns,
    Love is the fire, and sighs the smoke, the ashes shame and scorns;
    The fuel justice layeth on, and mercy blows the coals,
    The metal in this furnace wrought are men's defilëd souls,
    For which, as now on fire I am to work them to their good,
    So will I melt into a bath to wash them in my blood.
    With this he vanished out of sight and swiftly shrunk away,
    And straight I callëd into mind that it was Christmas day.
    --Robert Southwell

Saturday, December 23, 2006

Bow, Peasants

(following Julie and Scavella):

My Peculiar Aristocratic Title is:
Bishop Lord Howard the Potential of Nether Wombleshire
Get your Peculiar Aristocratic Title

Friday, December 22, 2006

Favorite Books Read During 2006

Frank Wilson's asked what are your favorite books you've read in the past year.

Here are mine (I've added the poetry category to his list):

Fiction: Kafka on the Shore by Haruki Murakami

Nonfiction: Objects on a Table: Harmonious Disarray in Art and Literature by Guy Davenport

Poetry: Beyond Remembering: The Collected Poems of Al Purdy

(None of these were originally published in 2006; that's just when I got around to reading them.)

Monday, December 18, 2006

My Christmas Present

Eagles completely vanished from this area of Georgia in the early 1920s and were listed as "extinct" in this region. About 25 years ago, a single mated pair showed up in the large swamp east of the city, the first in almost 60 years. Since then, 2 or 3 eagles have wintered over in the swamp every year; I've heard, some while back, a report that there were possibly 4 in the group at times -- 2 adults and 2 younger eagles. We would see 1 or 2 of them occasionally, although generally they tend to stay east of the city, and I personally would sight them only once every 3 or 4 years.

So I was completely unprepared this afternoon for the sight of 6 huge bald eagles, flying slowly with one pair in the lead and 4 others spaced out behind them, gliding silhouetted against the late afternoon sky. I cannot imagine any more moving gift, the awe and wonder of which are still with me even now, hours later.

Friday, December 15, 2006

More Shiny Bits in "The Jackdaw's Nest"