26 January 2006

Found treasures

The Library Thing catalogue experience has resulted in me finding a whole lot of books I'd forgotten about. I haven't read any poetry for ages. Leafing through some makes me realised how much I've missed. Here is one of my favourites from Robert Hayden an American poet who died in 1980.

Those Winter Sundays
by Robert Hayden

Sundays too my father got up early
and put his clothes on in the blueblack cold,
then with cracked hands that ached
from labor in the weekday weather made
banked fires blaze. No one ever thanked him.

I'd wake and hear the cold splintering, breaking.
When the rooms were warm, he'd call,
and slowly I would rise and dress,
fearing the chronic angers of that house,

Speaking indifferently to him,
who had driven out the cold
and polished my good shoes as well.
What did I know, what did I know
of love's austere and lonely offices?

* * *
And here's one from Rosemary Dobson an Australian poet.

Empty Spaces
by Rosemary Dobson

We never could walk then
Unimpeded, direct,
Through the furnished rooms
Of the house we lived in.

Cupboard and shelf
Stubbornly blocked us
We went zig-zag
By chairs and tables.

And where to put down
The children to sleep
Cots heaped over
With books and clothing?

Now the children are flown
And you, oh you
Who were always with me,
You, gone, too,

I can cross this room
From any direction
To the single chair
The single bed.


At 28 January 2006 at 12:17 am , Blogger Karen said...

Nice poem! I cringe at the thought of trying to catalog my library. Keeping it mostly-organized is as good as it gets.]

And - you've been tagged, to commit a Random Act of Kindness. Pass it on!

At 28 January 2006 at 12:48 pm , Blogger Keziah Hill said...

Darn! You mean I have to be nice? I'll try.


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