2017年3月26日 星期日

"Bitter-Sweet" by George Herbert

"Bitter-Sweet" by George Herbert
Ah, my dear angry Lord,
Since thou dost love, yet strike;
Cast down, yet help afford;
Sure I will do the like.
I will complain, yet praise;
I will bewail, approve;
And all my sour-sweet days
I will lament and love.
George Herbert (1593-1633) has come to be one of the most admired of the metaphysical poets. Though he is a profoundly religious poet, even secular readers respond to his quiet intensity and exuberant inventiveness, which are amply showcased in this selection. Herbert experimented brilliantly with a remarkable variety of forms, from hymns and sonnets to pattern poems, the shapes of which reveal their subjects. Such technical agility never seems ostentatious, however, for precision of language and expression of genuine feeling were the primary concerns of this poet, who admonished his readers to “dare to be true.” An Anglican priest who took his calling with deep seriousness, he brought to his work a religious reverence richly allied with a playful wit and with literary and musical gifts of the highest order. His best-loved poems, from “The Collar” and “Jordan” to “The Altar” and “Easter Wings,” achieve a perfection of form and feeling, a rare luminosity, and a timeless metaphysical grandeur. READ more here: http://www.penguinrandomhouse.com/…/herbert-poems-by-georg

2017年3月18日 星期六

Derek Walcott, “Map of the New World: Archipelagoes”

 Derek Walcott (1930-2017) 的這首詩, “Map of the New World: Archipelagoes”,童元方1992年雙十在哈佛翻譯過:"新世界地圖"

文題為:"詩在水上  不在山間--瓦科特的詩",收入【一樣花開】,台北:爾雅,1996,頁199-208

Derek Walcott, “Map of the New World: Archipelagoes”

At the end of this sentence, rain will begin.
At the rain’s edge, a sail.

Slowly the sail will lose sight of islands;
into a mist will go the belief in harbours
of an entire race.

The ten-years war is finished.
Helen’s hair, a grey cloud.
Troy, a white ashpit
by the drizzling sea.

The drizzle tighten like the strings of a harp.
A man with clouded eyes picks up the rain
and plucks the first line of the Odyssey.

2017年3月17日 星期五

the song “Darlin’ Eileen”

Leonard Bernstein

Happy St. Patrick's Day! Or might we say Lá fhéile Pádraig sona dhuit!!
We share with you the song “Darlin’ Eileen” from the original Broadway cast recording of the musical Wonderful Town, with music by Leonard Bernstein and lyrics by Betty Comden and Adolph Green.
Act II opens in Manhattan’s Christopher Street Station House, where Eileen Sherwood (recently arrested) has charmed the Irish precinct police to make butler’s announcements, retrieve newspapers and carry her suitcase and dresses.
The police are convinced that Eileen is Irish and has “brought a breath of the old country into the Station House” and the police have “been feelin’ twice as Irish since [Eileen} came into our lives”.
In a greatly exaggerated Irish brogue, Officer Lonigan sings:
“Take it from me
The mayor of Shannon
Would shoot off a cannon
And crown ye the queen
Darlin' Eileen, darlin' Eileen
Fairest colleen that iver [sic] I've seen
And it's oh I wish I were back
In the land of the green with my darlin' Eileen”
To which Eileen reponds:
“Listen my lads, I've something to tell you
I hope won't impel you to cry and to keen
Mother's a Swede and father's a Scot
And so Irish I'm not and I never have been”
All the police will hear none of this:
“Hush you, Eileen, hush you, Eileen
Fairest colleen that ever I've seen
Don't you hand us none of that blarney
You come from Kilarney, you're Irish Eileen”
A lusty jig dance resumes and ends in a “hats off” salute to the Irish girl of their dreams, Eileen.


Derek Walcott 1930-2017

I went to visit Derek Walcott on his home island of St. Lucia in mid-June, 1985. St. Lucia is one of the four Windward Islands in the eastern Caribbean, a…

Derek Walcott 1930-2017

Homecoming: Anse la Raye.

"Poetry, is perfection's sweat but which must seem as fresh as the raindrops on a statue's brow", claimed Walcott in his Nobel speech. Here, the poet of the Caribbean, illustrates this apparent ease of writing and shows us how fragmented memory is central to his poetry. (for Garth St Omer)

Whatever else we learned
at school, like solemn Afro-Greeks eager for grades,
of Helen and the shades
of borrowed ancestors,
there are no rites
for those who have returned
only, when her looms fade,
drilled in our skulls, the doom-
surge-haunted nights,
only this well-known passage
under the coconuts' salt-rusted
swords, these rotted
leathery sea-grape leaves,
the seacrabs' brittle helmets, and
this barbecue of branches, like the ribs
of sacrificial oxen on scorched sand;
only this fish-gut reeking beach
whose frigate stuck like buzzards overhead
whose spindly, sugar-headed children race
pelting up from the shallows
because your clothes,
your posture
seem a tourist's.
They swarm like flies
round your heart's sore.

Suffer them to come,
entering their needle's eye
knowing whether they live or die,
what others make of life will pass them by
like that far silvery freighter
threading the horizon like a toy;
for once, like them,
you wanted no career
but this sheer light, this clear,
infinite, boring, paradisal sea,
but hoped it would mean something to declare
today, I am your poet, yours,
all this you knew,
but never guessed you'd come
to know there are homecomings without home.

You give them nothing.
Their curses melt in air.
The black cliffs scowl,
the ocean sucks its teeth,
like that long dugout canoe
like a small petal fallen in a cup,
reflecting nothing but its image,
you sway, reflecting nothing.
The freighter's silvery ghost
is gone, the children gone.
Dazed by the sun
you trudge back to the village
past the white, salty esplanade
under whose palms, dead
fishermen move their draughts in shade,
crossing, eating their islands,
and one, with a politician's
ignorant, sweet smile, nods
as if all fate
swayed in his lifted hand.

Nobel laureate poet Derek Walcott dies aged 87 in St Lucia

Author Derek Walcott attends the 12th day of La Milanesiana 2008 at Teatro Dal Verme July 8, 2008 in Milan, Italy.Image copyrightGETTY IMAGES
Image captionDerek Walcott was one of the Caribbean's best known writers

Nobel laureate poet Derek Walcott has died aged 87 at his home in the Caribbean island of St Lucia after a long illness, local media reports say.
He was regarded by critics as one of the greatest Caribbean poets.
The writer's collections include In A Green Night: Poems 1948 - 1960 and his epic work, Omeros, which draws on Homer's Iliad and Odyssey.
He won the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1992 and the TS Eliot Prize for Poetry in 2011.
His winning collection for the TS Eliot Prize, White Egrets, was called "a moving, risk-taking and technically flawless book by a great poet" by the judges.
The Nobel Committee, announcing his prize, said: "His poetry acquires at one and the same time singular lustre and great force... Walcott's style is melodious and sensitive."
The poet won many other prizes, including a MacArthur Foundation award - the so-called "genius grant".
Walcott said at the time: "It's nice to get it, because it gives you four or five years of a great deal of security - the tough thing is when it's finished!
"It has a very bad connotation, this idea of a 'genius' - I'm not denying the fact that I'm prodigious, I'm not denying the fact that I wrote well... to me it's a gift. I feel blessed that I was gifted."
Appearing on BBC Radio 4's Desert Island Discs in 1992, he said he had written as far back as he could remember, and recalled his mother, a schoolteacher, reciting Shakespeare at home.
His father, who died while he was still an infant, had also written poetry, he said.
"I heard that kind of sound at home from when I was very young," he said. "I always knew that was what I wanted to do - to write, particularly poetry."
Born in 1930, he studied at the University of the West Indies in Jamaica, before moving to Trinidad in 1953, where he worked as a theatre and art critic.
He published his first collection, 25 Poems, at the age of 18. He was also an accomplished painter and playwright.

Derek Walcott in 1992
Image captionWalcott in 1992 - the year he was awarded the Nobel Prize

The Cultural Development Foundation of St Lucia has paid tribute to Walcott, saying in a statement: "The world has lost one of its noted literary icons.
"Our sympathies extend to St Lucia as a nation, who without doubt are proud and honoured to call him a true son of St Lucia.
"He was very vocal about the island's culture and heritage, and its preservation, and his love for St Lucia and the Caribbean was evident in his numerous mentions of 'home' in his work."
Speaking about the shock of returning home to St Lucia, Walcott said: "You had to balance off the beauty of the place with some of the poverty around you."
The Poetry Society described his death as "terrible news" and encouraged others to read his poetry in memoriam.
Walcott was also embroiled in controversy over his candidacy for the post of Oxford Professor of Poetry in 2009.
He pulled out of the race after academics at the university received dozens of anonymous letters linking him to an allegation of sexual harassment in 1982.
The eventual winner - the first woman to hold the prestigious position - was then forced to resign after just days in office, when it emerged she had briefed journalists on the allegations.

2017年3月15日 星期三

Wallace Stevens 詩選

Selected Poetry - American Studies @ The University of Virginia

The song and water were not medleyed sound Even if what she sang was what .... 

XXII Poetry is the subject of the poem, From this the poem issues and To this ...

2017年3月13日 星期一

"Love Song" by Rainer Maria Rilke, Joyce DiDonato, When my soul touches yours, Bernstein YouTube

On this day in 1963, Leonard Bernstein’s “When my Soul Touches Yours” was premiered by mezzo-soprano Jennie Tourel at The Town Hall in New York City.
This is the second of “Two Love Songs” composed by Bernstein in 1949, both dedicated to his good friend Ms. Tourel, the first of which, "Extinguish My Eyes", she premiered
at The Town Hall 14 years prior. The songs' texts were written by the poet Rainer Maria Rilke, with English translation by Jessie Lamont.
"Love Song"
Rainer Maria Rilke
(trans. Jessie Lamont)
When my soul touches yours a great chord sings!
How shall I tune it then to other things?
O! That some spot in darkness could be found
That does not vibrate whene'er your depths sound.
But everything that touches you and me
Welds us as played strings sound one melody.
Where is the instrument whence the sounds flow?
And whose the master-hand that holds the bow?
O! Sweet song—
We share with you a recording of Joyce DiDonato and pianist David Zobel performing "When My Soul Touches Yours" on the Eloquentia France Label.

Joyce DiDonato When my soul touches yours Bernstein YouTube

2017年3月11日 星期六

A Picture of the Painter Howard Hodgkin: Philip Larkin的名詩THE TREES (Seamus Justin Heaney )

Howard Hodgkin, painter, 1932-2017
A Picture of the Painter Howard Hodgkin

Alan Yentob presents a profile of Howard Hodgkin

Howard Hodgkin在愛爾蘭開大展,室內顏色選 Howard 喜愛的印度豐富的多彩,如展覽室的印度蘋果綠.....夕陽....美術館請愛爾蘭名詩人Seamus Justin Heaney (1939-2013-MRIA was an Irish poet, playwright, translator and lecturer. He received the 1995 Nobel Prize)  介紹,他朗讀Philip Larkin的名詩


2017年3月10日 星期五

Locksley Hall Poem by Alfred Tennyson

1915.3.8 胡適留學日記4則:紐約公共藏書樓; 2..理想中之藏書樓;3.夢想與理想 Locksley Hall;4.貝爾博士軼事

1. 紐約公共藏書樓

When I dipt into the future far as human eye could see;
Saw the Vision of the world and all the wonder that would be.—

In the Spring a fuller crimson comes upon the robin's breast;
In the Spring the wanton lapwing gets himself another crest;

In the Spring a livelier iris changes on the burnish'd dove;
In the Spring a young man's fancy lightly turns to thoughts of love.

Then her cheek was pale and thinner than should be for one so young,
And her eyes on all my motions with a mute observance hung.

And I said, "My cousin Amy, speak, and speak the truth to me,
Trust me, cousin, all the current of my being sets to thee."

On her pallid cheek and forehead came a colour and a light,
As I have seen the rosy red flushing in the northern night.

And she turn'd—her bosom shaken with a sudden storm of sighs—
All the spirit deeply dawning in the dark of hazel eyes—

Saying, "I have hid my feelings, fearing they should do me wrong";
Saying, "Dost thou love me, cousin?" weeping, "I have loved thee long."

Love took up the glass of Time, and turn'd it in his glowing hands;
Every moment, lightly shaken, ran itself in golden sands.

Love took up the harp of Life, and smote on all the chords with might;
Smote the chord of Self, that, trembling, pass'd in music out of sight.

Many a morning on the moorland did we hear the copses ring,
And her whisper throng'd my pulses with the fulness of the Spring.

Many an evening by the waters did we watch the stately ships,
And our spirits rush'd together at the touching of the lips.

O my cousin, shallow-hearted! O my Amy, mine no more!
O the dreary, dreary moorland! O the barren, barren shore!

Falser than all fancy fathoms, falser than all songs have sung,
Puppet to a father's threat, and servile to a shrewish tongue!

Is it well to wish thee happy?—having known me—to decline
On a range of lower feelings and a narrower heart than mine!

Yet it shall be; thou shalt lower to his level day by day,
What is fine within thee growing coarse to sympathize with clay.

As the husband is, the wife is: thou art mated with a clown,
And the grossness of his nature will have weight to drag thee down.

He will hold thee, when his passion shall have spent its novel force,
Something better than his dog, a little dearer than his horse.

What is this? his eyes are heavy; think not they are glazed with wine.
Go to him, it is thy duty, kiss him, take his hand in thine.

It may be my lord is weary, that his brain is overwrought:
Soothe him with thy finer fancies, touch him with thy lighter thought.

He will answer to the purpose, easy things to understand—
Better thou wert dead before me, tho' I slew thee with my hand!

Better thou and I were lying, hidden from the heart's disgrace,
Roll'd in one another's arms, and silent in a last embrace.

Cursed be the social wants that sin against the strength of youth!
Cursed be the social lies that warp us from the living truth!

Cursed be the sickly forms that err from honest Nature's rule!
Cursed be the gold that gilds the straiten'd forehead of the fool!

Well—'t is well that I should bluster!—Hadst thou less unworthy proved—
Would to God—for I had loved thee more than ever wife was loved.

Am I mad, that I should cherish that which bears but bitter fruit?
I will pluck it from my bosom, tho' my heart be at the root.

Never, tho' my mortal summers to such length of years should come
As the many-winter'd crow that leads the clanging rookery home.

Where is comfort? in division of the records of the mind?
Can I part her from herself, and love her, as I knew her, kind?

I remember one that perish'd; sweetly did she speak and move;
Such a one do I remember, whom to look at was to love.

Can I think of her as dead, and love her for the love she bore?
No—she never loved me truly; love is love for evermore.

Comfort? comfort scorn'd of devils! this is truth the poet sings,
That a sorrow's crown of sorrow is remembering happier things.

Drug thy memories, lest thou learn it, lest thy heart be put to proof,
In the dead unhappy night, and when the rain is on the roof.

Like a dog, he hunts in dreams, and thou art staring at the wall,
Where the dying night-lamp flickers, and the shadows rise and fall.

Then a hand shall pass before thee, pointing to his drunken sleep,
To thy widow'd marriage-pillows, to the tears that thou wilt weep.

Thou shalt hear the "Never, never," whisper'd by the phantom years,
And a song from out the distance in the ringing of thine ears;

And an eye shall vex thee, looking ancient kindness on thy pain.
Turn thee, turn thee on thy pillow; get thee to thy rest again.

Nay, but Nature brings thee solace; for a tender voice will cry.
'T is a purer life than thine, a lip to drain thy trouble dry.

Baby lips will laugh me down; my latest rival brings thee rest.
Baby fingers, waxen touches, press me from the mother's breast.

O, the child too clothes the father with a dearness not his due.
Half is thine and half is his: it will be worthy of the two.

O, I see thee old and formal, fitted to thy petty part,
With a little hoard of maxims preaching down a daughter's heart.

"They were dangerous guides the feelings—she herself was not exempt—
Truly, she herself had suffer'd"—Perish in thy self-contempt!

Overlive it—lower yet—be happy! wherefore should I care?
I myself must mix with action, lest I wither by despair.

What is that which I should turn to, lighting upon days like these?
Every door is barr'd with gold, and opens but to golden keys.

Every gate is throng'd with suitors, all the markets overflow.
I have but an angry fancy; what is that which I should do?

I had been content to perish, falling on the foeman's ground,
When the ranks are roll'd in vapour, and the winds are laid with sound.

But the jingling of the guinea helps the hurt that Honour feels,
And the nations do but murmur, snarling at each other's heels.

Can I but relive in sadness? I will turn that earlier page.
Hide me from my deep emotion, O thou wondrous Mother-Age!

Make me feel the wild pulsation that I felt before the strife,
When I heard my days before me, and the tumult of my life;

Yearning for the large excitement that the coming years would yield,
Eager-hearted as a boy when first he leaves his father's field,

And at night along the dusky highway near and nearer drawn,
Sees in heaven the light of London flaring like a dreary dawn;

And his spirit leaps within him to be gone before him then,
Underneath the light he looks at, in among the throngs of men:

Men, my brothers, men the workers, ever reaping something new:
That which they have done but earnest of the things that they shall do:

For I dipt into the future, far as human eye could see,
Saw the Vision of the world, and all the wonder that would be;

Saw the heavens fill with commerce, argosies of magic sails,
Pilots of the purple twilight dropping down with costly bales;

Heard the heavens fill with shouting, and there rain'd a ghastly dew
From the nations' airy navies grappling in the central blue;

Far along the world-wide whisper of the south-wind rushing warm,
With the standards of the peoples plunging thro' the thunder-storm;

Till the war-drum throbb'd no longer, and the battle-flags were furl'd
In the Parliament of man, the Federation of the world.
Image result for tennyson locksley hall
Locksley Hall
Poem by Alfred Tennyson, 1st Baron Tennyson
"Locksley Hall" is a poem written by Alfred Tennyson in 1835 and published in his 1842 collection of Poems. It narrates the emotions of a rejected suitor come to his childhood home, the fictional Locksley Hall.Wikipedia


1915 Woman Suffrage Parade in New York City.