memoirs, art and fragments by Thomas Milner

Archive for the ‘poetry’ Category

I hear voices

I hear voices.

Dream

Dream.

Sailing to Byzantium (2)

Sailing to Byzantium (2).

Human weakness

Human weakness.

Hemmed in by events

Hemmed in by events.

Her pilgrim soul

W.B. YEATS

W.B. YEATS

When I was young I greatly admired the poem When You Are Old by William Butler Yeats, the middle verse of which I quote:

How many loved your glad grace,

And loved your beauty with love false or true;

But one loved the pilgrim soul in you,

And loved the sorrows of your changing face.

Now I’m getting to be quite old myself and well, it has more meaning for me and I still like it.

DETAIL OF CARTOON by LEONARDO DA VINCI

DETAIL OF CARTOON by LEONARDO DA VINCI

I wish I had a Sivia Plath

I wish I had a Silvia Plath

Mournfully sings Ryan Adams

On his best-selling album Gold.

I know exactly how he feels.

I too wish I had a Silvia Plath

We too would drink Martinis

Very dry – three parts gin

And drink them

In front of a portrait of

Antonio Benedetto Carpano

The inventor of vermouth

And discuss her art and sullen craft

And how she became a legend

Converting trauma

Into triumphant and terrible words

And why she described Ariel

As a blood-jet.

SILVIA PLATH

SILVIA PLATH

And I’m sure she would agree

To me paying tribute to her

With her last prescient

And perfect poem:

Edge

The woman is perfected.

Her dead

Body wears the smile of accomplishment,

The illusion of a Greek necessity

Flows in the scrolls of her toga,

Her bare

Feet seem to be saying:

We have come so far, it is over.

Each dead child coiled, a white serpent,

One at each little

Pitcher of milk, now empty.

She has folded

Them back into her body as petals

Of a rose close when the garden

Stiffens and odors bleed

From the sweet, deep throats of the night flower.

The moon has nothing to be sad about,

Staring from her hood of bone.

She is used to this sort of thing.

Her blacks crackle and drag.

 

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