Tuesday, 24 September 2019


It has rained here non stop all day and is now, at a quarter to seven, almost dark and very miserable.  I have been to the Physiotherapist to have my knees and ankles manipulated and my back worked on.   I always come back very tired so hope I sleep well.  I certainly did last night.

It really has been a most depressing week weather wise after a long period of sunshine last week.   Suddenly it is Autumn with a vengeance and I don't like it. 

Tomorrow is our Poetry afternoon - as you know this is one of my most favourite afternoons - and as I have a Breast Cancer Screening in the morning I shall now go and choose my poems so that they are all ready for the afternoon.

What poem would you choose to read out loud at a meeting of friends?


Penhill said...

Robert Frost "The Road Not Taken" seems appropriate at the moment and also one of my favourite poems.

Gwil W said...

Oh what a tangled web we weave when first we practice to deceive. Sir Walter Scott. I noticed Lady Hale was wearing her spider brooch when she pronounce the unanimous verdict on Boris Johnsons con job on the queen and the nation. O Boris, you naughty boy.

Derek Faulkner said...

What poem - "Poem in October" by Dylan Thomas, one of my all time favourites.

justjill said...

Practising wearing purple. Ms Joseph.

JayCee said...

Wild Nights by Emily Dickinson. Short but sweet.

Tom Stephenson said...

'Twas on the Good Ship Venus', by Anon. It was read to me as a child and made a deep impression which has endured for all this time.

hart said...

Ithaka by Cavafy

Simon Douglas Thompson said...

The cyclists have been having a lot of fun in the championship time trials, some of them coming to a standstill and falling off cycling into pools of deep standing water

Alcea Rosea 31 said...

The Willing Mistress by Aphra Behn (1640-1689)

Rachel Phillips said...

Waltzing Maltilda, Banjo Paterson. Poem.

Gail, northern California said...

The Cloths of Heaven

Had I the heaven's embroidered cloths,
Enwrought with golden and silver light,
The blue and the dim and the dark cloths
Of night and light and the half-light;
I would spread the cloths under your feet:
But I, being poor, have only my dreams;
I have spread my dreams under your feet;
Tread softly because you tread on my dreams.

W. B. Yeats

Heather said...

There are too many to make a choice, but I do like the simplicity of some of John Clare's poems. Enjoy your afternoon.

Bonnie said...

I think a lovely Autumn poem is When the Frost is on the Punkin
by James Whitcomb Riley

Helen-at-Horsehouse said...

Thomas Hardy's poem "Weathers" begins with
"This is the weather the cuckoo likes,
And so do I"

I couldn't remember it all, but found it on a poetry website.
I thought the second verse was perfect for today.

Sue said...

John Keats
To Autumn

Season of mists and mellow fruitfulness
Close bosom-friend of the maturing sun
Conspiring with him how to load and bless
With fruit the vines that round the thatch-eves run;
To bend with apples the moss'd cottage-trees,
And fill all fruit with ripeness to the core;
To swell the gourd, and plump the hazel shells
With a sweet kernel; to set budding more,
And still more, later flowers for the bees,
Until they think warm days will never cease,
For Summer has o'er-brimm'd their clammy cells...

Beryl Ament said...

Every year at this time I meditate as I read Laurence Binyon's "The Turning of the Leaves". The older I get I realize that nothing is certain, only the certain spring.

Now is the time for the burning of the leaves.
They go to the fire; the nostril pricks with smoke
Wandering slowly into a weeping mist.
Brittle and blotched, ragged and rotten sheaves!
A flame seizes the smouldering ruin and bites
On stubborn stalks that crackle as they resist.

The last hollyhock's fallen tower is dust;
All the spices of June are a bitter reek,
All the extravagant riches spent and mean.
All burns! The reddest rose is a ghost;
Sparks whirl up, to expire in the mist: the wild
Fingers of fire are making corruption clean.

Now is the time for stripping the spirit bare,
Time for the burning of days ended and done,
Idle solace of things that have gone before:
Rootless hope and fruitless desire are there;
Let them go to the fire, with never a look behind.
The world that was ours is a world that is ours no more.
They will come again, the leaf and the flower, to arise
From squalor of rottenness into the old splendour,
And magical scents to a wondering memory bring;
The same glory, to shine upon different eyes.
Earth cares for her own ruins, naught for ours.
Nothing is certain, only the certain spring.

Joanne Noragon said...

Robert Frost. Stopping by woods

Cro Magnon said...

Any of Belloc's Cautionary Tales.

Librarian said...

Do you know Rainer Maria Rilke's poem "Day in Autumn"?
It would make an interesting variation to your poetry afternoons, as I don't believe many of the poems read there are originally German.
I loved it when we learned about it at school, and still think it is beautiful:

Day in Autumn
By Rainer Maria Rilke
Translated by Mary Kinzie

After the summer's yield, Lord, it is time
to let your shadow lengthen on the sundials
and in the pastures let the rough winds fly.

As for the final fruits, coax them to roundness.
Direct on them two days of warmer light
to hale them golden toward their term, and harry
the last few drops of sweetness through the wine.

Whoever's homeless now, will build no shelter;
who lives alone will live indefinitely so,
waking up to read a little, draft long letters,
and, along the city's avenues,
fitfully wander, when the wild leaves loosen.

(Some of the original meaning changes a bit with translation. For instance, in German, who lives alone will not live "indefinitely" so, but "for a long time". But the general idea and atmosphere are well rendered in this translation.)

Librarian said...

PS: I found a slightly different translation which is nearer to the original:

Lord: it is time. The summer was immense.
Lay your shadow on the sundials
and let loose the wind in the fields.

Bid the last fruits to be full;
give them another two more southerly days,
press them to ripeness, and chase
the last sweetness into the heavy wine.

Whoever has no house now will not build one
Whoever is alone now will remain so for a long
will stay up, read, write long letters,
and wander the avenues, up and down,
restlessly, while the leaves are blowing.

thelma said...

Something Anglo-Saxon, such as this taken from 'The Wanderer', and there is a lovely poem about Bath called 'The Ruin'. Such poetry read aloud in the Mead halls would have thrilled the audience. It is the stark simplicity of the words penned by unknown poets. And then there is 'The Seafarer' as well.

All is troublesome
in this earthly kingdom,
the turn of events changes
the world under the heavens.
Here money is fleeting,
here friend is fleeting,
here man is fleeting,
here kinsman is fleeting,
all the foundation of this world
turns to waste!

Very apt at the moment.

The Weaver of Grass said...

Thank you so much - such food for thought here and I shall certainly read some of these this afternoon, they are so apt.

Jinksy said...

Weaver, I'm going to be very bold and send you a little poem I wrote on another such wet day:-


The day is dull and overcast;
rain clouds fight the sun.
But I look and see a rainbow -
aren't I the lucky one?

The traffic thunders on the road -
but is that all I hear?
No! Close by a blackbird trills
its song that I hold dear.

It's all about perception,
this point of view we choose,
and if we seek the positive,
what do we have to lose?

Hope you enjoy this pseudo rainbow!
Love, Jinksy ♥

Jayview said...

I love Frost and Emily Dickinson and Gerard Manley Hopkins, but at the moment AD Hope’s poem seems terribly relevant and stays with me:

The Death of the Bird

For every bird there is this last migration:
Once more the cooling year kindles her heart;
With a warm passage to the summer station
Love pricks the course in lights across the chart.

Year after year a speck on the map, divided
By a whole hemisphere, summons her to come;
Season after season, sure and safely guided,
Going away she is also coming home.

And being home, memory becomes a passion
With which she feeds her brood and straws her nest,
Aware of ghosts that haunt the heart’s possession
And exiled love mourning within the breast.

The sands are green with a mirage of valleys;
The palm-tree casts a shadow not its own;
Down the long architrave of temple or palace
Blows a cool air from moorland scarps of stone.

And day by day the whisper of love grows stronger;
That delicate voice, more urgent with despair,
Custom and fear constraining her no longer,
Drives her at last on the waste leagues of air.

A vanishing speck in those inane dominions,
Single and frail, uncertain of her place,
Alone in the bright host of her companions,
Lost in the blue unfriendliness of space,

She feels it close now, the appointed season:
The invisible thread is broken as she flies;
Suddenly, without warning, without reason,
The guiding spark of instinct winks and dies.

Try as she will, the trackless world delivers
No way, the wilderness of light no sign,
The immense and complex map of hills and rivers
Mocks her small wisdom with its vast design.

And darkness rises from the eastern valleys,
And the winds buffet her with their hungry breath,
And the great earth, with neither grief nor malice,
Receives the tiny burden of her death.

Beverley said...

THe Horses by Ted Hughes, or The Owl by Alfred Lord Tennyson