A Poem for Mother's Day: "Sonnets are Full of Love" by Christina Rossetti

Our mom

Sonnets are full of love, and this my tome
Has many sonnets: so here now shall be
One sonnet more, a love sonnet, from me

A Poem for Sunday - "What We Want" by Linda Pastan

Dandelion: <a href='http://www.123rf.com/profile_janbussan'>janbussan / 123RF Stock Photo</a>
What we want is never simple.
We move among the things we thought we wanted: a face, a room, an open book and these things bear our names-- now they want us.
But what we want appears in dreams, wearing disguises.
We fall past, holding out our arms and in the morning our arms ache.
We don't remember the dream, but the dream remembers us.
It is there all day as an animal is there under the table, as the stars are there even in full sun.
August 16, 2015

A Poem For Sunday: The Summer Sun Shone Round Me by Robert Louis Stevenson

The summer sun shone round me,
The folded valley lay
In a stream of sun and odour,
That sultry summer day.

The tall trees stood in the sunlight
As still as still could be,
But the deep grass sighed and rustled
And bowed and beckoned me.

The deep grass moved and whispered
And bowed and brushed my face.
It whispered in the sunshine:
“The winter comes apace.”

Robert Louis Stevenson

A Poem for Valentine's Day: Brown Penny by William Butler Yeats

closed book with rose on the moss in the forest at sunset

 

Brown Penny by William Butler Yeats

I WHISPERED, "I am too young,"
And then, "I am old enough";
Wherefore I threw a penny
To find out if I might love.
"Go and love, go and love, young man,
If the lady be young and fair."
Ah, penny, brown penny, brown penny,
I am looped in the loops of her hair.

O love is the crooked thing,
There is nobody wise enough
To find out all that is in it,
For he would be thinking of love
Till the stars had run away
And the shadows eaten the moon.
Ah, penny, brown penny, brown penny,
One cannot begin it too soon.

 

Photo Credit: Closed book with rose on the moss in the forest at sunset by sovpag/123RF

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A Poem for Sunday - Reluctance by Robert Frost

Out through the fields and the woods
And over the walls I have wended;
I have climbed the hills of view
And looked at the world, and descended;
I have come by the highway home,
And lo, it is ended.

A Poem for Sunday: "As I Grew Older" by Langston Hughes

 

Image credit: sam74100 / 123RF Stock Photo 

As I Grew Older

It was a long time ago.
I have almost forgotten my dream.
But it was there then,
In front of me,
Bright like a sun-
My dream.
And then the wall rose,
Rose slowly,
Slowly,
Between me and my dream.
Rose until it touched the sky-
The wall.
Shadow.
I am black.
I lie down in the shadow.
No longer the light of my dream before me,
Above me.
Only the thick wall.
Only the shadow.
My hands!
My dark hands!
Break through the wall!
Find my dream!
Help me to shatter this darkness,
To smash this night,
To break this shadow
Into a thousand lights of sun,
Into a thousand whirling dreams
Of sun!

 

 Image credit: sam74100 / 123RF Stock Photo

A Poem for Sunday: Listen to the Mustn'ts

Kimora laughing on floor

Listen to the mustn’ts, child. Listen to the don’ts.
Listen to the shouldn’ts, the impossibles, the won’ts.
Listen to the never haves, then listen close to me…
Anything can happen, child. Anything can be.


—Shel Silverstein 

A Poem for Sunday: "On the Pulse of the Morning" by Maya Angelou

With the passing of Maya Angelou earlier this week, it only seems right that today's poem be from this amazing writer.  On the Pulse of the Morning is one of my favorites by her.  I hope you come to love and enjoy it as much as I do. Copyright: doraclub / 123RF Stock PhotoPhoto Credit: doraclub / 123RF Stock Photo

A Rock, A River, A Tree
Hosts to species long since departed,
Marked the mastodon.
The dinosaur, who left dry tokens
Of their sojourn here
On our planet floor,
Any broad alarm of their hastening doom
Is lost in the gloom of dust and ages.

But today, the Rock cries out to us, clearly, forcefully,
Come, you may stand upon my
Back and face your distant destiny,
But seek no haven in my shadow.

I will give you no more hiding place down here.

You, created only a little lower than
The angels, have crouched too long in
The bruising darkness,
Have lain too long
Face down in ignorance.

Your mouths spilling words
Armed for slaughter.

The Rock cries out today, you may stand on me,
But do not hide your face.

Across the wall of the world,
A River sings a beautiful song,
Come rest here by my side.

Each of you a bordered country,
Delicate and strangely made proud,
Yet thrusting perpetually under siege.

Your armed struggles for profit
Have left collars of waste upon
My shore, currents of debris upon my breast.

Yet, today I call you to my riverside,
If you will study war no more. Come,

Clad in peace and I will sing the songs
The Creator gave to me when I and the
Tree and the stone were one.

Before cynicism was a bloody sear across your
Brow and when you yet knew you still
Knew nothing.

The River sings and sings on.

There is a true yearning to respond to
The singing River and the wise Rock.

So say the Asian, the Hispanic, the Jew
The African and Native American, the Sioux,
The Catholic, the Muslim, the French, the Greek
The Irish, the Rabbi, the Priest, the Sheikh,
The Gay, the Straight, the Preacher,
The privileged, the homeless, the Teacher.
They hear. They all hear
The speaking of the Tree.

Today, the first and last of every Tree
Speaks to humankind. Come to me, here beside the River.

Plant yourself beside me, here beside the River.

Each of you, descendant of some passed
On traveller, has been paid for.

You, who gave me my first name, you
Pawnee, Apache and Seneca, you
Cherokee Nation, who rested with me, then
Forced on bloody feet, left me to the employment of
Other seekers- desperate for gain,
Starving for gold.

You, the Turk, the Swede, the German, the Scot…
You the Ashanti, the Yoruba, the Kru, bought
Sold, stolen, arriving on a nightmare
Praying for a dream.

Here, root yourselves beside me.

I am the Tree planted by the River,
Which will not be moved.

I, the Rock, I the River, I the Tree
I am yours- your Passages have been paid.

Lift up your faces, you have a piercing need
For this bright morning dawning for you.

History, despite its wrenching pain,
Cannot be unlived, and if faced
With courage, need not be lived again.

Lift up your eyes upon
The day breaking for you.

Give birth again
To the dream.

Women, children, men,
Take it into the palms of your hands.

Mold it into the shape of your most
Private need. Sculpt it into
The image of your most public self.
Lift up your hearts
Each new hour holds new chances
For new beginnings.

Do not be wedded forever
To fear, yoked eternally
To brutishness.

The horizon leans forward,
Offering you space to place new steps of change.
Here, on the pulse of this fine day
You may have the courage
To look up and out upon me, the
Rock, the River, the Tree, your country.

No less to Midas than the mendicant.

No less to you now than the mastodon then.

Here on the pulse of this new day
You may have the grace to look up and out
And into your sister’s eyes, into
Your brother’s face, your country
And say simply
Very simply
With hope
Good morning.

A Poem for Memorial Day: "Soldier, Maiden, and Flower" by Eugene Field

With Memorial Day tomorrow, I thought this poem by Eugene Field was well suited to the moment. Copyright: es75 / 123RF Stock Photo

Photo credit: es75 / 123RF Stock Photo

"Sweetheart, take this," a soldier said,
"And bid me brave good-by;
It may befall we ne'er shall wed,
But love can never die.
Be steadfast in thy troth to me,
And then, whate'er my lot,
'My soul to God, my heart to thee,'--
Sweetheart, forget me not!"

The maiden took the tiny flower
And nursed it with her tears:
Lo! he who left her in that hour
Came not in after years.
Unto a hero's death he rode
'Mid shower of fire and shot;
But in the maiden's heart abode
The flower, forget-me-not.

And when he came not with the rest
From out the years of blood,
Closely unto her widowed breast
She pressed a faded bud;
Oh, there is love and there is pain,
And there is peace, God wot,--
And these dear three do live again
In sweet forget-me-not.

'T is to an unmarked grave to-day
That I should love to go,--
Whether he wore the blue or gray,
What need that we should know?
"He loved a woman," let us say,
And on that sacred spot,
To woman's love, that lives for aye,
We'll strew forget-me-not.

A Poem for Sunday: "Choices by Nikki Giovanni

[caption id="attachment_2330" align="aligncenter" width="640"]Copyright: bradcalkins / 123RF Stock Photo Copyright: bradcalkins / 123RF Stock Photo[/caption] Choices

if i can't do 
what i want to do 
then my job is to not 
do what i don't want 
to do 

it's not the same thing 
but it's the best i can 
do 

if i can't have 
what i want    then 
my job is to want 
what i've got 
and be satisfied 
that at least there 
is something more 
to want 

since i can't go 
where i need 
to go    then i must    go 
where the signs point 
though always understanding 
parallel movement 
isn't lateral 

when i can't express 
what i really feel 
i practice feeling 
what i can express 
and none of it is equal 
i know 
but that's why mankind 
alone among the animals 
learns to cry —Nikki Giovanni