Celebrating Poetry | Carl Sandburg

Theme in Yellow
by Carl Sandburg, American writer, editor, and poet (1878 – 1967)

I spot the hills
With yellow balls in autumn.
I light the prairie cornfields
Orange and tawny gold clusters
And I am called pumpkins.
On the last of October
When dusk is fallen
Children join hands
And circle round me
Singing ghost songs
And love to the harvest moon;
I am a jack-o’-lantern
With terrible teeth
And the children know
I am fooling.

 

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Celebrating Poetry | Henry Thomas Liddell

The Vampire Bride [I am come-I am come!]
by Henry Thomas Liddell, English author and poet (1797-1878)

“I am come—I am come! once again from the tomb,
In return for the ring which you gave;
That I am thine, and that thou art mine,
This nuptial pledge receive.”

He lay like a corse ‘neath the Demon’s force,
And she wrapp’d him in a shround;
And she fixed her teeth his heart beneath,
And she drank of the warm life-blood!

And ever and anon murmur’d the lips of stone,
“Soft and warm is this couch of thine,
Thou’lt to-morrow be laid on a colder bed—
Albert! that bed will be mine!”

 

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Machinations of War – Chapter 16 – by Alexander Thomas and Kimberley Thomas

Here is this week’s installment of Machinations of War the collaborative story my son and I are writing. This week’s Chapter 16 is Alexander’s contribution and is hosted on his blog: Riding into the Sunrise

Machinations of War, Chapter 16.

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Celebrating Poetry | Edna St. Vincent Millay

Wraith
by Edna St. Vincent Millay, American poet and playwright (1892-1950)

“Thin Rain, whom are you haunting,
That you haunt my door?”
—Surely it is not I she’s wanting;
Someone living here before—
“Nobody’s in the house but me:
You may come in if you like and see.”

Thin as thread, with exquisite fingers,—
Have you seen her, any of you?—
Grey shawl, and leaning on the wind,
And the garden showing through?

Glimmering eyes,—and silent, mostly,
Sort of a whisper, sort of a purr,
Asking something, asking it over,
If you get a sound from her.—

Ever see her, any of you?—
Strangest thing I’ve ever known,—
Every night since I moved in,
And I came to be alone.

“Thin Rain, hush with your knocking!
You may not come in!
This is I that you hear rocking;
Nobody’s with me, nor has been!”

Curious, how she tried the window,—
Odd, the way she tries the door,—
Wonder just what sort of people
Could have had this house before . . .

 

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Celebrating Poetry | Madison Julius Cawein

Will-O’-The-Wisp
by Madison Julius Cawein, American poet (1865 – 1914)

I.

There in the calamus he stands
With frog-webbed feet and bat-winged hands;
His glow-worm garb glints goblin-wise;
And elfishly, and elfishly,
Above the gleam of owlet eyes,
A death’s-moth cap of downy dyes
Nods out at me, nods out at me.

II.

Now in the reeds his face looks white
As witch-down on a witches’ night;
Now through the dark old haunted mill,
So eerily, so eerily,
He flits; and with a whippoorwill
Mouth calls, and seems to syllable,
“Come follow me! come follow me!”

III.

Now o’er the sluggish stream he wends,
A slim light at his finger-ends;
The spotted spawn, the toad hath clomb,
Slips oozily, slips oozily;
His easy footsteps seem to come–
Like bubble-gaspings of the scum–
Now near to me, now near to me.

IV.

There by the stagnant pool he stands,
A fox-fire lamp in flickering hands;
The weeds are slimy to the tread,
And mockingly, and mockingly,
With slanted eyes and eldritch head
He leans above a face long dead,–
The face of me! the face of me!

 

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Music Monday | Kris Kristofferson

This week’s #MusicMonday will spotlight the last of the musical artists I had the great fortune of seeing perform live with my mom.

In the summer of 1981, I surprised my mom by buying tickets to see singer, songwriter, and film actor, Kris Kristofferson perform live in Buffalo, New York. She was almost as enamored with Kris as she had been with Elvis. I remember she had been thrilled that I had taken time out of my exceptionally busy 19-year-old life to spend the day with her. It’s funny, I don’t recall the venue where the performance took place—I want to say it was at Shea’s Performing Arts Center, in downtown Buffalo—yet somehow that doesn’t seem quite right. Regardless, it was a small setting, and I had managed to score fantastic seats in the second row from the stage. As Kris Kristofferson took the stage, my mother reached out and touched his shoulder and he turned and gave her this huge grin. She was on cloud nine for the rest of the evening!

It was the last concert her and I went to together. Shortly after that, I went off to college, quit college and moved to California, got married, had kids, grew up. For whatever reasons, she and I just never made the time to do these kinds of spur of the moment activities again. Kris was our last.

But we had Johnny, Elvis, and Kris. Not a bad run if you ask me!

Thank you, mom, for the wonderful music memories. <3

Here is one of my all-time favorite of songs, written by Kris Kristofferson and Fred Foster, “Me and Bobby McGee”

And this one is for you, mom!

 

“I had a list of rules I made up one time. It says: Tell the truth, sing with passion, work with laughter, and love with heart. Those are good to start with, anyway.”

 –Kris Kristofferson

 

Music Monday (469x288)

Happy Monday, everyone! Wishing you all a great week! <3

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Celebrating Poetry | Robert Graves

Intercession in Late October
by Robert Graves, English poet, novelist, and critic (1895–1985)

How hard the year dies: no frost yet.
On drifts of yellow sand Midas reclines,
Fearless of moaning reed or sullen wave.
Firm and fragrant still the brambleberries.
On ivy-bloom butterflies wag.

Spare him a little longer, Crone,
For his clean hands and love-submissive heart.

 

Featured Image – Photograph taken by Dori (dori@merr.info)

Celebrating Poetry | Emily Dickinson

The morns are meeker than they were – J12 (Nature, Poem 28: Autumn)
by Emily Dickinson, American poet (1830 – 1886)

The morns are meeker than they were –
The nuts are getting brown –
The berry’s cheek is plumper –
The Rose is out of town.

The Maple wears a gayer scarf –
The field a scarlet gown –
Lest I should be old-fashioned
I’ll put a trinket on.

 

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Celebrating Poetry | William Blake

To Autumn
by William Blake, English painter, poet, and print-maker (1757–1827)

O Autumn, laden with fruit, and stain’d
With the blood of the grape, pass not, but sit
Beneath my shady roof; there thou may’st rest,
And tune thy jolly voice to my fresh pipe,
And all the daughters of the year shall dance!
Sing now the lusty song of fruits and flowers.

“The narrow bud opens her beauties to
The sun, and love runs in her thrilling veins;
Blossoms hang round the brows of Morning, and
Flourish down the bright cheek of modest Eve,
Till clust’ring Summer breaks forth into singing,
And feather’d clouds strew flowers round her head.

“The spirits of the air live in the smells
Of fruit; and Joy, with pinions light, roves round
The gardens, or sits singing in the trees.”
Thus sang the jolly Autumn as he sat,
Then rose, girded himself, and o’er the bleak
Hills fled from our sight; but left his golden load.

 

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Celebrating Poetry | Emily Brontë

Fall, leaves, fall
by Emily Brontë, English novelist and poet (1818–1848)

Fall, leaves, fall; die, flowers, away;
Lengthen night and shorten day;
Every leaf speaks bliss to me
Fluttering from the autumn tree.
I shall smile when wreaths of snow
Blossom where the rose should grow;
I shall sing when night’s decay
Ushers in a drearier day.

 

Featured Image by Tirza van Dijk