Thursday, September 14, 2006

National Poetry Week [3]

Hmm. Sorry for that patch of black ice last night. Thanks for the nice massages, commenters. I did a similar dark bit last year with Jordie Albiston and Derek Walcoff. I've got a thing for poems that make me weep. They're good for clearing the system. I saw Candy recently, and was sobbing in the first five minutes just because they used an exquisite cover of Tim Buckley's 'Song to the Siren', another of my touchstones. Then they played Tim's original version towards the end, and I walked out of the cinema and straight into a music shop. I've been listening to the soundtrack all day in the car, and I think I'm wept out. Where am I going with this? Dunno.*

Ah! I've got a book that I write all my fav weepy poems in, and I've been keeping it for nigh on 20 years now, so it's an interesting selection, because it goes from teenage choices to now, and my taste has shifted quite dramatically. It's the poetic equivalent of moving from B52 cocktails (or whatever horrid sticky drink teenagers like these days) to a really nice subtle red wine. And I didn't write them in in any kind of order, but picked a blank page at random and wrote. So it's a very eclectic mix as you flip through. And the most hilarious pages have the poems I wrote myself. I don't do much of that anymore. I leave that to the experts :)

Dang, I love that book.

Let's have another poem. Something jaunty, and defiant, less morose (and straight from my book, so I haven't got the publication date, although I could look it up. Naa, too tired tonight):


Though the pitcher that goes to the sparkling rill
Too oft gets broken at last,
There are scores of others its place to fill
When its earth to the earth is cast;
Keep that pitcher at home, let it never roam,
But lie like a useless clod,
Yet sooner or later the hour will come
When its chips are thrown to the sod.

Is it wise, then, say, in the waning day,
When the vessel is crackt and old,
To cherish the battered potter's clay,
As though it were virgin gold?
Take care of yourself, dull boorish elf,
Though prudent and safe you seem
Your pitcher will break on the musty shelf
And mine by the dazzling stream.

Adam Lindsay Gordon

* I think I'm back to my point, already mentioned, that songs are poems.

1 comment:

worldpeace and a speedboat said...

that's a tops poem, Ducky. I like!

I don't read much poetry. it usually frustrates me because I think it's a bit like good science fiction - you have to hear about the good stuff by word of mouth. I don't actually have to patience to find the good things by myself... it's not something I can make an almost immediate decision on, like the visual, decorative and technical arts. or music for that matter.