Autographa Gamma

goes mothJan Augustin van der Goes (c. 1690)
Autographa Gamma Moth

 

 

A Name for All 

Moonmoth and grasshopper that flee our page
And still wing on, untarnished of the name
We pinion to your bodies to assuage
Our envy of your freedom—we must maim
Because we are usurpers, and chagrined—
And take the wing and scar it in the hand.
Names we have, even, to clap on the wind;
But we must die, as you, to understand.
I dreamed that all men dropped their names, and sang
As only they can praise, who build their days
With fin and hoof, with wing and sweetened fang
Struck free and holy in one Name always.


Hart Crane  (July 21, 1899 – April 27, 1932)

The Life of Things

about 1438-42The Vision of Saint Eustace
Pisanello (c. 1395 – c. 1455)

 


When I Buy Pictures

or what is closer to the truth,
when I look at that of which I may regard myself as the imaginary possessor,
I fix upon what would give me pleasure in my average moments:
the satire upon curiousity in which no more is discernible
than the intensity of the mood;
or quite the opposite—the old thing, the medieval decorated hat-box,
in which there are hounds with waists diminishing like the waist of the hour-glass,
and deer and birds and seated people;
it may be no more than a square of parquetry; the literal biography perhaps,
in letters standing well apart upon a parchment-like expanse;
an artichoke in six varieties of blue; the snipe-legged hieroglyphic in three parts;
the silver fence protecting Adam’s grave, or Michael taking Adam by the wrist.
Too stern an intellectual emphasis upon this quality or that detracts from one’s enjoyment.
It must not wish to disarm anything; nor may the approved triumph easily be honored—
that which is great because something else is small.
It comes to this: of whatever sort it is,
it must be “lit with piercing glances into the life of things”;
it must acknowledge the spiritual forces which have made it.

 

Marianne Moore (1887 – 1972)
Quotation within poem from  The Poetry of the Old Testament by Alex R. Gordon (1872 – 1930)

 

The Seed Shop

hugo de vriesHugo Marie de Vries ForMemRS (February, 1848 – May, 1935)

 

 

The Seed Shop

Here in a quiet and dusty room they lie,
Faded as crumbled stone or shifting sand,
Forlorn as ashes, shrivelled, scentless, dry –
Meadows and gardens running through my hand.

In this brown husk a dale of hawthorn dreams;
A cedar in this narrow cell is thrust
That will drink deeply of a century’s streams;
These lilies shall make summer on my dust.

Here in their safe and simple house of death,
Sealed in their shells, a million roses leap;
Here I can blow a garden with my breath,
And in my hand a forest lies asleep.


Muriel Stuart Irwin (1885 — 1967)

 

Rose, oh

Rose, oh pure contradiction, delight
of being no one’s sleep under so
many lids.

Rainer Maria Rilke

Published in: on July 21, 2011 at 5:16 pm  Leave a Comment  
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