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C.bronco
07-25-2015, 06:07 AM
There are several, for me. In high school

l, Robert Hayden's Those Winter Sundays slept in my wallet. In college, I was mesmerized by Eliot's The Waste Land, so much so, that I spent a year after graduation studying the references. And, less known, Roethke's A Sequence, Sometimes Metaphysical. Is nature kind? The heart's core tractable? All waters waver, and all fires fail. I am a man, a man at intervals...


What poems have haunted you?

Errant Lobe
07-25-2015, 11:35 AM
This is from Robert F. Murray an author who died young in the early 1900's.
He had such a skill with phrasing.
It doesn't haunt me but drives me to continuously revise for more power and economy in my words.


THE WASTER SINGING AT MIDNIGHT.
In the Style of LONGFELLOW.



Loud he sang the song Ta Phershon
For his personal diversion,
Sang the chorus U-pi-dee,
Sang about the Barley Bree.

In that hour when all is quiet
Sang he songs of noise and riot,
In a voice so loud and queer
That I wakened up to hear.

Songs that distantly resembled
Those one hears from men assembled
In the old Cross Keys Hotel,
Only sung not half so well.

For the time of this ecstatic
Amateur was most erratic,
And he only hit the key
Once in every melody.

If “he wot prigs wot isn’t his’n
Ven he’s cotched is sent to prison,”
He who murders sleep might well
Adorn a solitary cell.

But, if no obliging peeler
Will arrest this midnight squealer,
My own peculiar arm of might
Must undertake the job to-night.

I cannot get over his brilliant and almost effortless poetic constructions bringing into play familiar elements of setting, instantly recognizable within the community for which it was written.

Errant Lobe
07-25-2015, 11:43 AM
I am studying this poem of Robert F Murray's, a young author who died at the age of 32 I think, from TB in the early 1900's.

This poem really speaks to me because of the skill with which it was constructed.

I see art in it as well as a complete narrative and i have never forgotten it even after having first read it 15 years ago.



COME BACK TO ST. ANDREWS



Come back to St. Andrews! Before you went away
You said you would be wretched where you could not see the Bay,
The East sands and the West sands and the castle in the sea
Come back to St. Andrews—St. Andrews and me.

Oh, it’s dreary along South Street when the rain is coming down,
And the east wind makes the student draw more close his warm red gown,
As I often saw you do, when I watched you going by
On the stormy days to College, from my window up on high.

I wander on the Lade Braes, where I used to walk with you,
And purple are the woods of Mount Melville, budding new,
But I cannot bear to look, for the tears keep coming so,
And the Spring has lost the freshness which it had a year ago.

Yet often I could fancy, where the pathway takes a turn,
I shall see you in a moment, coming round beside the burn,
Coming round beside the burn, with your swinging step and free,
And your face lit up with pleasure at the sudden sight of me.

Beyond the Rock and Spindle, where we watched the water clear
In the happy April sunshine, with a happy sound to hear,
There I sat this afternoon, but no hand was holding mine,
And the water sounded eerie, though the April sun did shine.

Oh, why should I complain of what I know was bound to be?
For you had your way to make, and you must not think of me.
But a woman’s heart is weak, and a woman’s joys are few—
There are times when I could die for a moment’s sight of you.

It may be you will come again, before my hair is grey
As the sea is in the twilight of a weary winter’s day.
When success is grown a burden, and your heart would fain be free,
Come back to St. Andrews—St. Andrews and me.

Ken
07-25-2015, 02:43 PM
Milton's "Paradise Lost." Divinely inspired, IMO. The exchange between Adam and Eve is, truly, sublime.
Apologies for the emotional outpouring. Quite unforgivable to be sure.

Errant Lobe
07-25-2015, 06:58 PM
Nice selection of Milton which is not to my taste but still excellent.

I exercise whenever i get stuck while writing, by writing poetry in difficult forms.
I try epigrams,
couplets,
buccolics,
eclogues,
dramatic monologues and the Ghazal, etc.

William Haskins
07-25-2015, 08:16 PM
Wanting to Die
Anne Sexton, 1928 - 1974

Since you ask, most days I cannot remember.
I walk in my clothing, unmarked by that voyage.
Then the almost unnameable lust returns.

Even then I have nothing against life.
I know well the grass blades you mention,
the furniture you have placed under the sun.

But suicides have a special language.
Like carpenters they want to know which tools.
They never ask why build.

Twice I have so simply declared myself,
have possessed the enemy, eaten the enemy,
have taken on his craft, his magic.

In this way, heavy and thoughtful,
warmer than oil or water,
I have rested, drooling at the mouth-hole.

I did not think of my body at needle point.
Even the cornea and the leftover urine were gone.
Suicides have already betrayed the body.

Still-born, they don’t always die,
but dazzled, they can’t forget a drug so sweet
that even children would look on and smile.

To thrust all that life under your tongue!--
that, all by itself, becomes a passion.
Death’s a sad Bone; bruised, you’d say,

and yet she waits for me, year after year,
to so delicately undo an old wound,
to empty my breath from its bad prison.

Balanced there, suicides sometimes meet,
raging at the fruit, a pumped-up moon,
leaving the bread they mistook for a kiss,

leaving the page of the book carelessly open,
something unsaid, the phone off the hook
and the love, whatever it was, an infection.

skelly
07-26-2015, 01:31 AM
somewhere i have never travelled,gladly beyond
E. E. Cummings, 1894 - 1962

somewhere i have never travelled,gladly beyond
any experience,your eyes have their silence:
in your most frail gesture are things which enclose me,
or which i cannot touch because they are too near

your slightest look easily will unclose me
though i have closed myself as fingers,
you open always petal by petal myself as Spring opens
(touching skilfully,mysteriously)her first rose

or if your wish be to close me,i and
my life will shut very beautifully,suddenly,
as when the heart of this flower imagines
the snow carefully everywhere descending;

nothing which we are to perceive in this world equals
the power of your intense fragility:whose texture
compels me with the colour of its countries,
rendering death and forever with each breathing

(i do not know what it is about you that closes
and opens;only something in me understands
the voice of your eyes is deeper than all roses)
nobody,not even the rain,has such small hands

ZachJPayne
07-26-2015, 01:43 AM
A Letter to Sarah (When Considering Superpowers)
-- Jared Singer


https://youtu.be/JwNiYFlHmWs

If I could regenerate any damage to my body,
I would double back flip belly flop
off the tallest building I could find.
I would make you watch.
Would not tell you it won’t kill me.
When my body hits the ground,
turns bone to dust,
when blood splatters across your face
there will be a moment
where your heart stops,
where the belly drops out of your everything.
I would calmly walk over to you and say
yeah, ever since you killed yourself
it’s been like that for all of us
All of the time.


If I could fly,
I would take you so high so fast
you would be terrified that wind resistance
alone would rip you out of my arms.
Don’t worry.
I would hold onto you with a strength
born of fear and longing.
When your vision starts to go black
I will whisper-
If you’d only told us something was wrong
we could’ve held you
told you we loved you.
We could have helped.
I would stop,
as the oxygen floods back into your brain
everything would come into focus.
I would tell you yeah,
every day was like that with you,
you always made sure
we saw the glory in front of us.


If I could read people’s minds,
I would not invade your privacy.
Instead I would eavesdrop on every passerby.
tattoo my arms with all the compliments,
every wow she’s good looking,
every I wish I was that confident.
Meeting all of your ex-lovers
would turn my chest and back into a masterpiece.
Record every thing they should have told you
every how could I have ever let her get away,
every she was the best thing that ever happened to me.
My legs would turn into patchwork with hatch marks
for every time I wished you were still with me.
It would not take a full day
to cover this body with all of the nice things people
didn’t think you needed to hear.


If I could travel through time,
I would go back to the moment
before it was too late.
Right before the moment you wrote a suicide note
that started Dear Jared:
I’m doing this now because I know you will be the one to find me
because of all of my friends I think you’re the one
whose strong enough to take it.
What made you think I was strong enough to take this?
I would go back to the moment before you
became the reason I don’t read letters
without having someone else proof read them first,


If I could project my thoughts in another’s heard,
even knowing it could never have saved you.
But believing maybe it could have saved me,
you would never have doubted,
even for an instant,
that you were loved.

C.bronco
07-26-2015, 06:39 AM
I forgot to mention Yusef Komunyakaa's Facing It. No, she's brushing a boy's hair. It takes my breath away every time and I am thankful that I was able to hear him read it.

Ken
07-26-2015, 03:09 PM
I exercise whenever i get stuck while writing, by writing poetry in difficult forms.
I try epigrams,
couplets,
buccolics,
eclogues,
dramatic monologues and the Ghazal, etc.

Seems like a neat approach. You've got some on your list I am not even familiar with. Off to do some research ...

Pyekett
07-26-2015, 07:43 PM
But believing maybe it could have saved me,
you would never have doubted,
even for an instant,
that you were loved.

I can see why that one stays with you. For me, it's this one.


The Windhover
Gerard Manley Hopkins

To Christ our Lord

I caught this morning morning’s minion, king-
dom of daylight’s dauphin, dapple-dawn-drawn Falcon, in his riding
Of the rolling level underneath him steady air, and striding
High there, how he rung upon the rein of a wimpling wing
In his ecstasy! then off, off forth on swing,
As a skate’s heel sweeps smooth on a bow-bend: the hurl and gliding
Rebuffed the big wind. My heart in hiding
Stirred for a bird,—the achieve of; the mastery of the thing!

Brute beauty and valour and act, oh, air, pride, plume, here
Buckle! AND the fire that breaks from thee then, a billion
Times told lovelier, more dangerous, O my chevalier!

No wonder of it: shéer plód makes plough down sillion
Shine, and blue-bleak embers, ah my dear,
Fall, gall themselves, and gash gold-vermillion.

Lauram6123
07-26-2015, 08:42 PM
This one still haunts me...

‘Out, Out—’

By Robert Frost

The buzz saw snarled and rattled in the yard
And made dust and dropped stove-length sticks of wood,
Sweet-scented stuff when the breeze drew across it.
And from there those that lifted eyes could count
Five mountain ranges one behind the other
Under the sunset far into Vermont.
And the saw snarled and rattled, snarled and rattled,
As it ran light, or had to bear a load.
And nothing happened: day was all but done.
Call it a day, I wish they might have said
To please the boy by giving him the half hour
That a boy counts so much when saved from work.
His sister stood beside him in her apron
To tell them ‘Supper.’ At the word, the saw,
As if to prove saws knew what supper meant,
Leaped out at the boy’s hand, or seemed to leap—
He must have given the hand. However it was,
Neither refused the meeting. But the hand!
The boy’s first outcry was a rueful laugh,
As he swung toward them holding up the hand
Half in appeal, but half as if to keep
The life from spilling. Then the boy saw all—
Since he was old enough to know, big boy
Doing a man’s work, though a child at heart—
He saw all spoiled. ‘Don’t let him cut my hand off—
The doctor, when he comes. Don’t let him, sister!’
So. But the hand was gone already.
The doctor put him in the dark of ether.
He lay and puffed his lips out with his breath.
And then—the watcher at his pulse took fright.
No one believed. They listened at his heart.
Little—less—nothing!—and that ended it.
No more to build on there. And they, since they
Were not the one dead, turned to their affairs.

sunandshadow
07-27-2015, 04:26 AM
Full Moon
By Elinor Wylie (http://www.poetryfoundation.org/bio/elinor-wylie)

My bands of silk and miniver
Momently grew heavier;
The black gauze was beggarly thin;
The ermine muffled mouth and chin;
I could not suck the moonlight in.

Harlequin in lozenges
Of love and hate, I walked in these
Striped and ragged rigmaroles;
Along the pavement my footsoles
Trod warily on living coals.

Shouldering the thoughts I loathed,
In their corrupt disguises clothed,
Morality I could not tear
From my ribs, to leave them bare
Ivory in silver air.

There I walked, and there I raged;
The spiritual savage caged
Within my skeleton, raged afresh
To feel, behind a carnal mesh,
The clean bones crying in the flesh.



This was used as an example in a booklet I was issued in English class in high school, and it stuck in my mind for years.

C.bronco
07-27-2015, 05:27 AM
Raymond Carver, My Daughter and Apple Pie.

frimble3
07-27-2015, 06:22 AM
'The Swimmer's Moment' by Margaret Avison. First read it in University, it's hung in my head for almost 40 years, although I knew, even then, that I was not one who would ever 'contest the rapids'.

Robert Dawson
07-27-2015, 06:35 AM
Skelly, another poet's reply (http://www.poets.org/poetsorg/poem/even-rain)to the Cummings poem that you cited.

Richard Wilbur's somewhat delayed entry (http://the-leewit.livejournal.com/420293.html) in the Duc d'Orleans' poetry contest.

And this crazy little piece (http://www.poetrynook.com/poem/lily-germander-and-sops-wine) from the seventeenth century, which is a potent earworm - be warned!

DragonFruit
07-28-2015, 10:09 PM
Ever since hearing it in middle school, this poem has always stayed with me:



Hope
Emily Dickinson

Hope is thing thing with feathers
that perches in the soul
and sings the song without the words
and never stops at all

And sweetest in the Gale is heard
And sore must be the storm
That could abash the little bird
that kept so many warm

Ive heard it in the chillest land
and in the strangest sea
Yet, never in extremity,
it asked a crumb of me.

Magdalen
07-29-2015, 06:13 AM
The Lake Isle of Innisfree


BY WILLIAM BUTLER YEATS (http://www.poetryfoundation.org/bio/william-butler-yeats)

I will arise and go now, and go to Innisfree,
And a small cabin build there, of clay and wattles made;
Nine bean-rows will I have there, a hive for the honey-bee,
And live alone in the bee-loud glade.

And I shall have some peace there, for peace comes dropping slow,
Dropping from the veils of the morning to where the cricket sings;
There midnight’s all a glimmer, and noon a purple glow,
And evening full of the linnet’s wings.

I will arise and go now, for always night and day
I hear lake water lapping with low sounds by the shore;
While I stand on the roadway, or on the pavements grey,
I hear it in the deep heart’s core.


Source: The Collected Poems of W. B. Yeats (1989)

http://www.poetryfoundation.org/poem/172053

Madelyn
08-01-2015, 10:45 PM
At the New Year
By Kenneth Patchen

In the shape of this night, in the still fall
of snow, Father
In all that is cold and tiny, these little birds
and children
In everything that moves tonight, the trolleys
and the lovers, Father
In the great hush of country, in the ugly noise
of our cities
In this deep throw of stars, in those trenches
where the dead are, Father
In all the wide land waiting, and in the liners
out on the black water
In all that has been said bravely, in all that is
mean anywhere in the world, Father
In all that is good and lovely, in every house
where sham and hatred are
In the name of those who wait, in the sound
of angry voices, Father
Before the bells ring, before this little point in time
has rushed us on
Before this clean moment has gone, before this night
turns to face tomorrow, Father
There is this high singing in the air
Forever this sorrowful human face in eternity’s window
And there are other bells that we would ring, Father
Other bells that we would ring.


source: poetryoutloud.org (http://www.poetryoutloud.org/poem/245040)

Norman D Gutter
08-04-2015, 01:58 AM
The two that come closest to haunting me, in the sense that they have never left my active brain, are Leigh Hunt's "Abou Ben Adhem" and Frost's "Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening". The first for the truth it contains, and the second because of how every English teacher tried to convince me it's a suicide poem, and I just can't see it.

Demeter
08-04-2015, 05:32 PM
Wallace Stevens' "The House Was Quiet and the World Was Calm," about the rare times when the experience of reading becomes all-encompassing.
(on Poetry Foundation website)
Also, "At Home in the Summer Mountains," by Yu Xuanji, translated by Jane Hirshfield.








At Home in the Summer Mountains

I’ve come to the house of the immortals:
In every corner, wildflowers bloom.
In the front garden, trees
Offer their branches for drying clothes;
Where I eat, a wine glass can float
In the springwater’s chill.
From the portico, a hidden path
Leads to the bamboo’s darkened groves.
Cool in a summer dress, I choose
From among heaped piles of books.
Reciting poems in the moonlight, riding a painted boat--
Every place the wind carries me is home.

Yu Xuanji, 842-872
tr. by Jane Hirshfield

Katol
08-10-2015, 07:41 PM
This:

Death of a Son
(who died in a mental hospital aged one)


Something has ceased to come along with me.
Something like a person: something very like one.
And there was no nobility in it
Or anything like that.


Something there was like a one year
Old house, dumb as stone. While the near buildings
Sang like birds and laughed
Understanding the pact.


They were to have with silence. But he
Neither sang nor laughed. He did not bless silence
Like bread, with words.
He did not forsake silence.


But rather, like a house in mourning
Kept the eye turned in to watch the silence while
The other houses like birds
Sang around him.


And the breathing silence neither
Moved nor was still.


I have seen stones: I have seen brick
But this house was made up of neither bricks nor stone
But a house of flesh and blood
With flesh of stone


And bricks for blood. A house
Of stones and blood in breathing silence with the other
Birds singing crazy on its chimneys.
But this was silence,


This was something else, this was
Hearing and speaking though he was a house drawn
Into silence, this was
Something religious in his silence,


Something shining in his quiet,
This was different this was altogether something else:
Though he never spoke, this
Was something to do with death.


And then slowly the eye stopped looking
Inward.The silence rose and became still.
The look turned to the outer place and stopped,
With the birds still shrilling around him.
And as if he could speak


He turned over on his side with his one year
Red as a wound
He turned over as if he could be sorry for this
And out of his eyes two great tears rolled like stones,
and he died.


Jon Silkin

Sarita
08-11-2015, 01:54 AM
Two poems never leave me.

#1: La Femme Qui Pleure (http://whaskins.pairserver.com/poisonpen.net/?cat=16). I'm never far from this one. Ever. She hovers in the corners of my mind, reminding me.

#2: Dream, by May Sarton

Inside my mother's death
I lay and could not breathe,
Under the hollow cheekbone,
Under the masked face,
As if locked under stone
In that terrible place.

I knew before I woke
That I would have to break
Myself out of that tomb,
Be born again or die,
Once more wrench from the womb
The prisoner's harsh cry.

And that the only way
Was to bring death with me
From under the lost face,
For I would never come
From that empty place
Without her, alone:

Her death within me
Like the roots of a tree
Her life within mine--
Twice-born mystery
Where the roots intertwine.
When I woke, I was free.

Errant Lobe
08-11-2015, 05:25 AM
I can see why that one stays with you. For me, it's this one.


The Windhover
Gerard Manley Hopkins

To Christ our Lord

I caught this morning morning’s minion, king-
dom of daylight’s dauphin, dapple-dawn-drawn Falcon, in his riding
Of the rolling level underneath him steady air, and striding
High there, how he rung upon the rein of a wimpling wing
In his ecstasy! then off, off forth on swing,
As a skate’s heel sweeps smooth on a bow-bend: the hurl and gliding
Rebuffed the big wind. My heart in hiding
Stirred for a bird,—the achieve of; the mastery of the thing!

Brute beauty and valour and act, oh, air, pride, plume, here
Buckle! AND the fire that breaks from thee then, a billion
Times told lovelier, more dangerous, O my chevalier!

No wonder of it: shéer plód makes plough down sillion
Shine, and blue-bleak embers, ah my dear,
Fall, gall themselves, and gash gold-vermillion.


I like this!

Errant Lobe
08-11-2015, 05:28 AM
Can somebody introduce me to some poem that will make me see its merits?

CassandraW
08-11-2015, 05:38 AM
All of mine.

ETA:

by the way, that was actually supposed to be a wry, joking reply to the previous "I hate free verse! Someone show me why it's worthwhile" post (since my poetry is mostly free verse, and it makes me sad to see all free verse sweepingly dismissed as worthless.) I just realized it looks, standing as it does on a new page, as though I am proclaiming that all of my poetry is haunting. (mine nags me rather than haunts me, alas.)

kennyc
08-14-2015, 09:01 PM
I forgot to mention Yusef Komunyakaa's Facing It. No, she's brushing a boy's hair. It takes my breath away every time and I am thankful that I was able to hear him read it.

Wonderful poem!

I'm mention Annabelle Lee by Poe in case it has not been mentioned.

kennyc
08-14-2015, 09:07 PM
Having it out with Melancholy (http://www.poets.org/poetsorg/poem/having-it-out-melancholy)by Jane Kenyon

Sarita
08-14-2015, 09:11 PM
I'm mention Annabelle Lee by Poe in case it has not been mentioned.
Absolutely. I can't hear this song without being pulled back to Poe: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1YSWoobDA-0

C.bronco
08-19-2015, 05:24 AM
Carver's Transformation. Salt where I stand.

Taylor Harbin
08-19-2015, 06:14 AM
Not exactly a formal poem, but Walt Whitman's "The Million Dead, Too, Summed Up."

Charles Bukowski's "Born Into This" and "So You Want to Be a Writer"

kennyc
08-19-2015, 01:47 PM
Carver's Transformation. Salt where I stand.

Do you have a link or reference to that? I'd like to read it....I'm assuming you mean Raymond Carver?

kennyc
08-19-2015, 01:48 PM
Not exactly a formal poem, but Walt Whitman's "The Million Dead, Too, Summed Up."

Charles Bukowski's "Born Into This" and "So You Want to Be a Writer"

I've been rereading a bunch of Bukowski poetry in the last few days. What wonderful stuff!

C.bronco
08-20-2015, 05:22 AM
kennyc:


I don't see it online, but it was in A New Path to the Waterfall.
Yes, Raymond Carver. He is one of my biggest influences. It all started with "Your Dog Dies."

Kylabelle
08-23-2015, 05:31 PM
This:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=abGzxWuLQP8

skelly
08-23-2015, 06:24 PM
Can somebody introduce me to some poem that will make me see its merits?

What would be the point? "I hate free verse!" is a pretty definitive statement. You've already made up your mind.

kennyc
08-23-2015, 06:52 PM
kennyc:


I don't see it online, but it was in A New Path to the Waterfall.
Yes, Raymond Carver. He is one of my biggest influences. It all started with "Your Dog Dies."

Thanks!
I've been re-reading "Where I'm Calling From" his collection of stories. Incredible short story writer!

It's not this one you mean is it? - http://allpoetry.com/Your-Dog-Dies

Kylabelle
08-23-2015, 07:13 PM
All of mine.

ETA:

by the way, that was actually supposed to be a wry, joking reply to the previous "I hate free verse! Someone show me why it's worthwhile" post (since my poetry is mostly free verse, and it makes me sad to see all free verse sweepingly dismissed as worthless.) I just realized it looks, standing as it does on a new page, as though I am proclaiming that all of my poetry is haunting. (mine nags me rather than haunts me, alas.)

I missed that whole part of the conversation somehow.

When I read your post before you added the later detail, I thought, yep, me too. It's true; all my poems haunt me. Those written haunt me because they do speak from a deep place in my consciousness which is still alive. Those unwritten haunt me even more.

I don't think it's anything to apologize for, either. But I didn't say it right away because I was pretty sure this thread was meant for sharing accessible poems by others. Still, I was glad to read your post even without the subtext about free verse. Lots of people hate free verse. Lots of people hate poetry! And even here at AW I have a couple of friends who stubbornly refuse to look at any poems because they feel it is beyond them or outside their ability to receive, somehow.

That also haunts me. Not personally about those individuals, so much, as the fact that it is so for so many these days. But, this is territory we've covered before here, pretty exhaustively, so I probably should shut up now.

Haggis
08-23-2015, 07:19 PM
Can somebody introduce me to some poem that will make me see its merits?

? (http://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/quotes/o/ogdennash134152.html)

Kylabelle
08-23-2015, 07:21 PM
Lovely, puppster, but it isn't free verse!

Haggis
08-23-2015, 07:50 PM
Lovely, puppster, but it isn't free verse!

Try to help and see the thanks you get....

Okay. How about Thomas Lynch's "Walking Papers" from his collection (http://www.amazon.com/Walking-Papers-Poems-Thomas-Lynch/dp/0393342670/ref=sr_1_1_twi_kin_2_twi_pap_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1440344848&sr=8-1&keywords=walking+papers+lynch) of the same name.

Here's an excerpt:


Listen –
something’s going to get you in the end.
The numbers are fairly convincing on this,
hovering, as they do, around a hundred
percent....

Kylabelle
08-23-2015, 10:04 PM
Perfect.

C.bronco
08-26-2015, 06:16 AM
I also love Gwendolyn Brooks, Boy Breaking Glass.