Saturday, December 20, 2014

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

To Mary, On Receiving Her Portrait
-George Gordon, Lord Byron

This faint resemblance of thy charms, (Though strong as mortal art could give,) My constant heart of fear disarms, Revives my hopes, and bids me live. Here, I can trace the locks of gold Which round thy snowy forehead wave; The cheeks which sprung from Beauty's mould, The lips, which made me Beauty's slave. Here I can trace---ah, no! that eye, Whose azure floats in liquid fire, Must all the painter's art defy, And bid him from the task retire. Here, I behold its beauteous hue; But where's the beam so sweetly straying, Which gave a lustre to its blue, Like Luna o'er the ocean playing? Sweet copy! far more dear to me, Lifeless, unfeeling as thou art, Than all the living forms could be, Save her who plac'd thee next my heart. She plac'd it, sad, with needless fear, Lest time might shake my wavering soul, Unconscious that her image there Held every sense in fast control. Thro' hours, thro' years, thro' time, 'twill cheer--- My hope, in gloomy moments, raise; In life's last conflict 'twill appear, And meet my fond, expiring gaze.

Monday, December 15, 2014

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

I Hear America Singing
-Walt Whitman

I hear America singing, the varied carols I hear, Those of mechanics, each one singing his as it whould be blithe and strong, 
The carpenter singing his as he measures his plank or beam, The mason singing his as he makes ready for work, or leaves off work, The boatman singing what belongs to him in his boat, the deckhand singing on the steamboat deck, The shoemaker singing as he sits on his bench, the hatter singing as he stands, The woodcutter's song, the ploughboy's on his way in the morning, or at noon intermission or at sundown, The delicious singing of the mother, or of the young wife at work, or of the girl sewing or washing, Each singing what belongs to him or her and to none else, The day what belongs to the day--at night the party of young fellows, robust, friendly, Singing with open mouths their strong melodious songs.

Monday, December 8, 2014

Friday, December 5, 2014

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Despairing Cries
-Walt Whitman

1 Despairing cries float ceaselessly toward me, day and night, The sad voice of Death--the call of my nearest lover, putting forth, alarmed, uncertain, "This sea I am quickly to sail, come tell me, Come tell me where I am speeding--tell me my destination." 2 I understand your anguish, but I cannot help you, I approach, hear, behold--the sad mouth, the look out of the eyes, your mute inquiry, "Whither I go from the bed I now recline on, come tell me;" Old age, alarmed, uncertain--A young woman's voice appealing to me, for comfort, A young man's voice, "Shall I not escape?"

Monday, December 1, 2014

Thursday, November 27, 2014

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Black Rook in Rainy Weather
-Sylvia Plath

On the stiff twig up there Hunches a wet black rook Arranging and rearranging its feathers in the rain. I do not expect a miracle Or an accident To set the sight on fire In my eye, not seek Any more in the desultory weather some design, But let spotted leaves fall as they fall, Without ceremony, or portent. Although, I admit, I desire, Occasionally, some backtalk From the mute sky, I can't honestly complain: A certain minor light may still Leap incandescent Out of the kitchen table or chair As if a celestial burning took Possession of the most obtuse objects now and then --- Thus hallowing an interval Otherwise inconsequent By bestowing largesse, honor, One might say love. At any rate, I now walk Wary (for it could happen Even in this dull, ruinous landscape); sceptical, Yet politic; ignorant Of whatever angel may choose to flare Suddenly at my elbow. I only know that a rook Ordering its black feathers can so shine As to seize my senses, haul My eyelids up, and grant A brief respite from fear Of total neutrality. With luck, Trekking stubborn through this season Of fatigue, I shall Patch together a content Of sorts. Miracles occur, If you care to call those spasmodic Tricks of radiance miracles. The wait's begun again, The long wait for the angel. For that rare, random descent.
Qi Chengxia

Monday, November 24, 2014

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Bluebeard
-Sylvia Plath

I am sending back the key that let me into bluebeard's study; because he would make love to me I am sending back the key; in his eye's darkroom I can see my X-rayed heart, dissected body : I am sending back the key that let me into bluebeard's study.