Writer’s Poem: what can I say…

Writer’s Poem: what can I say…

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Someone I loved once gave me a box full of darkness,
It took me years to understand that this, too, was a gift.”

The above quote is one I have seen roaming on the internet for years now, always the words, never the author. I only just found our today, It was written by the Pulitzer winner and incredible poet- Mary Oliver.

I have read a lot of Mary Oliver’s poems but connected with a only few- The poem I am sharing below is one of them. But then again, my choice of Poetry is something else. Either way, reading Mary Oliver’s poems gives one the sense that she is a woman in tune with nature. She writes a lot about nature and in soothing words.

Below is the poem I chose for this week’s writer’s Poem Wednesday. I hope you like it:

What can I say by Mary Oliver

What can I say that I have not said before?
So I’ll say it again.
The leaf has a song in it.
Stone is the face of patience.
Inside the river there is an unfinishable story
and you are somewhere in it
and it will never end until all ends.

Take your busy heart to the art museum and the
chamber of commerce
but take it also to the forest.
The song you heard singing in the leaf when you
were a child
is singing still.
I am of years lived, so far, seventy-four,
and the leaf is singing still.

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Writer’s quote: Mother’s love

Writer’s quote: Mother’s love

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Who sat and watched my infant head
When sleeping on my cradle bed…

Do the above lines sound familiar? Most of us grew up reciting them. I cant remember exactly who taught me the poem, or where I was taught. Was it in school? At home? By my classmates? All I can remember is knowing the poem.

This famous poem was actually written by Ann Taylor in the 18/19th century. It was written at a time when maternal and child care was poor, and a lot of mothers would watch their children get ill and die from illnesses.

This poem reminds me of Love. I hope it takes you down memory lane…

My mother by Ann Taylor

Who sat and watched my infant head
When sleeping on my cradle bed,
And tears of sweet affection shed?
My Mother.

When pain and sickness made me cry,
Who gazed upon my heavy eye,
And wept for fear that I should die?
My Mother.

Who taught my infant lips to pray
And love God’s holy book and day,
And walk in wisdom’s pleasant way?
My Mother.

And can I ever cease to be
Affectionate and kind to thee,
Who wast so very kind to me,
My Mother?

Ah, no! the thought I cannot bear,
And if God please my life to spare
I hope I shall reward they care,
My Mother.

When thou art feeble, old and grey,
My healthy arm shall be thy stay,
And I will soothe thy pains away,
My Mother.

The beautiful image above is gotten from: http://www.bestsayingsquotes.com/quote/who-ran-to-help-me-when-i-fell-and-would-some-pretty-story-2003.html

Writer’s Poem: After a while…

Writer’s Poem: After a while…

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I don’t think enough credit is given to translators. I’m saying this because, there are some incredibly amazing poetry I have come across, which I wouldn’t have been able to read if not for the translators who transformed the various original languages in which the poems were written into English.

Today’s Writer’s poem Wednesday is a poem by the Argentinian writer, Jorge Luis Borge. “After A while” is a poem which resonates with a reader, it tugs on one’ emotional strings while at the same time, leaving a resounding message. It is the of understanding and advice. I hope you enjoy it as much as I do.

After A while by Jorge Luis Borge

After a while you learn the subtle difference
between holding a hand and chaining a soul.
And you learn that love doesn’t mean leaning
and company doesn’t mean security.

And you begin to learn that kisses aren’t contracts
and presents aren’t promises.

And you begin to accept your defeats with your head up
and your eyes ahead,
with the grace of an adult, not the grief of a child.

And you learn to build all your roads on today,
because tomorrow’s ground is too uncertain for plans,
and futures have a way of falling down in mid-flight.

After a while you learn that even sunshine burns
if you get too much.
So you plant your own garden
and decorate your own soul,
instead of waiting for someone to leave you flowers.

And you learn that you really can endure;
You really are strong,
you really have worth.
And you learn,
and you learn,
With every goodbye, you learn.

Translated by Veronica A.  Shoffstall

p.s I would love to hear your thoughts on this poem. It really is a favorite of mine. (And yes, I have far too many favorites 😄)

 

Writer’s Poem: The way it sometimes is

Writer’s Poem: The way it sometimes is

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Have you ever seen a face in a crowd which reminds you of someone. Someone, a phantom whom you can’t put a name to but yet, you strongly believe you must have seen someone who looks like that before.

Today’s poem for Writer’s poem Wednesday tackles the same issue. It really is an interesting read (if I do say so myself). I first came across it being recited on Poetry Out Loud, and well, the reciter won the nationwide contest for that year. Hope you enjoy the poem.

The Way It Sometimes is by HENRY TAYLOR
At times it is like watching a face you have just met,
trying to decide who it reminds you of—
no one, surely, whom you ever hated or loved,
but yes, somebody, somebody. You watch the face

as it turns and nods, showing you, at certain angles,
a curve of the lips or a lift of the eyebrow
that is exactly right, and still the lost face
eludes you. Now this face is talking, and you hear

a sound in the voice, the accent on certain words—
yes! a phrase . . . you barely recall sitting outside,
by a pool or a campfire, remarking
a peculiar, recurring expression. Two syllables,

wasn’t it? Doorknob? Bathroom? Shawcross? What the hell
kind of word is shawcross? A name; not the right one.
A couple of syllables that could possibly be
a little like something you may once have heard.

So the talk drifts, and you drift, sneaking glances,
pounding your brain. Days later a face occurs to you,
and yes, there is a resemblance. That odd word, though,
or phrase, is gone. It must have been somebody else.

Yes, it’s like that, at times; something is, maybe;
and there are days when you can almost say what it is.

Writer’s Poem Wednesday: Be Kind!

Writer’s Poem Wednesday: Be Kind!

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Welcome to another Writer’s Poem Wednesday! This blog is still here because of every single one of you who reads it.

Last year, we got over 30,000 views and over 17,000 visitors! Thank you so much. I have been a lazy writer and recently and Unfortunately, it may last till the end of January. I do apologise for it, the muse is there, the words are in my head, but for some reason, I just dont want to sit and write or read. Has anyone gone through it too? 

Today’s poem is by a poet, whose writing reminds me of Nikki Giovanni. The poem talks about dealing with our fellow human beings with “kindness” in a subtle manner. She reflects, how wonderful this world would be if everyone treated the other as a father treats his child- with sensitivity. She is Naomi shihab Nye and  I hope you enjoy the poem 

Shoulders by Naomi Shihab Nye
A man crosses the street in rain,
stepping gently, looking two times north and south,
because his son is asleep on his shoulder.

No car must splash him.
No car drive too near to his shadow.

This man carries the world’s most sensitive cargo
but he’s not marked.
Nowhere does his jacket say FRAGILE,
HANDLE WITH CARE.

His ear fills up with breathing.
He hears the hum of a boy’s dream
deep inside him.

We’re not going to be able
to live in this world
if we’re not willing to do what he’s doing
with one another.

The road will only be wide.
The rain will never stop falling.

Writer’s Poem wednesday: Arguments

Writer’s Poem wednesday: Arguments

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Have you ever met a person who is so vehement and adamant in his argument even though he is wrong. And that’s not all, the argument does not end until you agree, what the other party is saying is right (even if it’s wrong). Well, today’s short poem by Wendy Cope touches on that topic. Whatever happened to the good old “let us agree to disagree“?!

I have been in situations, where there was an argument and I stood by my point; and after checking the facts, it turns out I was in fact wrong. I say, just silently let the argument die out or admit that you’re wrong. It is that easy.

Talking about silence, I know I have been awol this January but, I do have a reason. My Network went off since Sunday night- No calls and no internet; something to do with a national blackout. Turns out, I can survive without my phone or internet.

Long story short, it has been fixed finally- I can post, read, like, again. I will try to post a poem tomorrow, My Mental Health Friday post on Friday and a Flash Fiction story on Saturday. Below is the poem by Wendy Cope, hope you like it.

Differences of opinion by Wendy Cope

He tells her that the earth is flat–
He knows the facts, and that is that.
In altercations fierce and long
She tries her best to prove him wrong.
But he has learnt to argue well.
He calls her arguments unsound
And often asks her not to yell.
She cannot win. He stands his ground.

The planet goes on being round.

Writer’s Poems of 2017

Writer’s Poems of 2017

As promised, I compiled a list of all the writer’s poems I posted in 2017. It totals about 42 poems.

This year, I tried to share with you guys the poems which touched me, and stayed with me. Poems which made my heart tug and my brain work. Poems which reminded me why I fell in love poetry with the first place. The list comprises of authors ranging from the old school poets like Walt Whitman and Emily Dickinson to 21st century poets such as Carmen Gimenez and Joan Murray. Here’s the list below:

 

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1) Thoughtless cruelty by Charles Lamb
2) How frail the heart must be by Sylvia Plath
3) Solitude by Ella Wheeler Wilcox
4) Personal by Tony Hoagland
5) Mother To Son by Langston Hughes
6) Mother’s Smile by Michael Burch
7) To March By Emily Dickinson
8) Do not go gentle into that good night By Dylan Thomas
9) Silence by Billy Collins
10) In Flanders fields By John McRae

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11) Sympathy by Paul Laurence Dunbar
12) I’m a fool to love you by Cornelius Eady
13) For the young who want to by Marge Piercy 
14) Cartoon Physics, part 1 by Nick Flynn
15) The little white hearse by Ella Wheeler Wilcox
16) In The park by Gwen Harwood )
17) Love Is a Dog from Hell by Charles Bukowski
18) O captain, my captain by Walt Whitman
19) Alone by Maya Angelou
20) Stop all clocks by W. H. Auden

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21) Not by Erin Hanson
22) Bleeding Heart BY Carmen Giménez Smith
23) Domestic Situation by Ernest Hilbert
24) To the young who want to die By Gwendolyn Brooks
25) Her Head by Joan Murray
26) Dear Reader by Rita Mae Reese
27) I, too by Langston Hughes
28) The mother by Gwendolyn Brooks
29) The Mothering Blackness by Maya Angelou
30) The Nail by C.K Williams

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31) Annals of the closet by Katie Queen
32) I am! by John Clare
33) Middle Age by Pat Schneider
34) I walked a mile with pleasure by Robert Browning Hamilton
35) The art of losing by Elizabeth Bishop
36) Soul unraveled: Rising from the ashes
37) Where my books go by W.B Yeats
38) My November Guest by Robert Frost
39) Mrs. Caldera’s House of Things By Gregory Djanikian
40) Words by Anne Sexton
41) Waving goodbye by Gerald Stern
42) The Ballad of reading gaol by Oscar Wilde.

Thank you to everyone who visited every Wednesday to read, like, comment and share. I really appreciate you giving me the listening ears to hopefully not bore you with my favorite poems. ♥️

Writer’s Quote: Oscar Wilde

Writer’s Quote: Oscar Wilde

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I think most people have heard of Oscar Wilde. Although I am not familiar with a lot of his poems, I have come across his quotes multiple times which I have to admit, are interesting and intriguing.

Following the quote above, I have no idea what the “it” he is referring to is, but I would go out on a limb and say “heartbreak” or any of its synonyms. Nevertheless, I will say this. Most of us have experienced heartbreak, most of us will experience heartbreak. I believe it is important to us to remind ourselves, No one should have the power to turn us into something we are not proud of. We deserve better.

The poem below contains only a few verses from the original poem. I am not exaggerating when I say, the original poem is really long poem. The following lines talk about human nature and I think you would love it. Enjoy.

The Ballad of reading gaol by Oscar Wilde

Yet Each man kills the thing he loves
By each let this be heard,
Some do it with a bitter look,
Some with a flattering word,

The coward does it with a kiss,
The brave man with a sword!
Some kill their love when they are young,
And some when they are old,

Some strangle with the hands of Lust,
Some with the hands of Gold:
The kindest use a knife, because
The dead so soon grow cold.

Some love too little, some too long,
Some sell, and others buy;
Some do the deed with many tears,
And some without a sigh:
For each man kills the thing he loves,
Yet each man does not die.

Would you like to see a compilation of all the Writers poems I’ve shared this year? Just a list with all the authors and poem titles. Let me know in the comments and I’d share the list this sunday.

 

Writer’s Quote: waving goodbye

Writer’s Quote: waving goodbye

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Welcome to another writer’s quote/poem Wednesday where I share some of my favourite quotes and poems. Today’s choice is a poem by Gerald Stern and I hope you like it.

Waving goodbye by Gerald Stern
I wanted to know what it was like before we
had voices and before we had bare fingers and before we
had minds to move us through our actions
and tears to help us over our feelings,
so I drove my daughter through the snow to meet her friend
and filled her car with suitcases and hugged her
as an animal would, pressing my forehead against her,
walking in circles, moaning, touching her cheek,
and turned my head after them as an animal would,
watching helplessly as they drove over the ruts,
her smiling face and her small hand just visible
over the giant pillows and coat hangers
as they made their turn into the empty highway.

Writer’s Quote: Words

Writer’s Quote: Words

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I was listening to a lecture today by a speaker, Mufti Menk, and he was talking about having compassion for our fellow human beings.
It got me thinking, how can we have compassion unless we are kinder with our words. “Words”- a five lettered syllable which has the power to make or break another person. And yet, we throw words around like lightweight.

I say, we, because as much as I do not want to admit it, I am very much guilty of using words wrongly and hurting another with the words I have uttered. This is the reason why I am sharing this poem today by the confessional poet- Anne Sexton. This is a reminder to myself first of all, words need to be handled with care.

I hope you like the poem and get inspired by it.

Words by Anne Sexton

Be careful of words,
even the miraculous ones.
For the miraculous we do our best,
sometimes they swarm like insects
and leave not a sting but a kiss.
They can be as good as fingers.
They can be as trusty as the rock
you stick your bottom on.
But they can be both daisies and bruises.
Yet I am in love with words.
They are doves falling out of the ceiling.
They are six holy oranges sitting in my lap.
They are the trees, the legs of summer,
and the sun, its passionate face.
Yet often they fail me.
I have so much I want to say,
so many stories, images, proverbs, etc.
But the words aren’t good enough,
the wrong ones kiss me.
Sometimes I fly like an eagle
but with the wings of a wren.
But I try to take care
and be gentle to them.
Words and eggs must be handled with care.
Once broken they are impossible
things to repair.