Poetry – John Keats, “Selected Letters”

poetry-john-keats
Photo by Dana Critchlow

“O thou whose face has felt the Winter’s wind;
Whose eye has seen the Snow clouds hung in Mist
And the black elm-tops ‘mong the freezing Stars
To thee the Spring will be a harvest-time –
O thou whose only book has been the light
Of/supreme/darkness which thou feddest on
Night after night, when Phoebus was away
To thee the Spring shall be a tripple morn –
O fret not after Knowledge – I have none
And yet my song comes native with the warmth
O fret not after Knowledge – I have none
And yet the Evening listens – He who saddens
At thought of Idleness cannot be idle,
And he’s awake who thinks himself asleep.”

– John Keats

Quote – Romesh Gunesekera, “Reef”

romesh-gunesekera-reef
Photo by Roman Kraft

“I could lose myself in his voice; this happened not only on that first day, but frequently over many years. Sometimes I would miss the instructions he was trying to give me, but he didn’t always notice. I think he himself was sometimes entranced by his voice and lost the sense of what he had started out to convey. Perhaps that was why he sometimes preferred to be silent. I could understand that. My head also sometimes seemed more full of words than could ever pass my lips.”

– Romesh Gunesekera, Reef


Quote – Evelyn Waugh, “Brideshead Revisited”

evelyn-waugh-brideshead-revisited
Photo by Pascal Müller

“These memories, which are my life – for we possess nothing certainly except the past – were always with me. Like the pigeons of St Mark’s, they were everywhere, under my feet, singly, in pairs, in little honey-voiced congregations, nodding, strutting, winking, rolling their tender feathers of their necks, perching sometimes, if I stood still, on my shoulder; until, suddenly, the noon gun boomed and in a moment, with a flutter and swoop of wings, the pavement was bare and the whole sky above dark with a tumult of fowl. “

– Evelyn Waugh, Brideshead Revisited 

Quote – An excerpt from Robinson Jeffers’s “Original Sin”

quote-robinson-jeffers-original-sin
Photo by Joshua Earle

But we are what we are, and we might remember
Not to hate any person, for all are vicious;
And not to be astonished at any evil, all are deserved;
And not fear death; it is the only way to be cleansed.

– Robinson Jeffers


I chose the last few lines due to their powerful resonance; of course, it seems awkward to leave it like that…so here’s the entire piece if you would like to read it!

Poetry – Sylvia Plath, “Blue Moles”

poetry-blue-moles-sylvia-plath
Photo by Ander Burdain

i

They’re out of the dark’s ragbag, these two
Moles dead in the pebbled rut,
Shapeless as flung gloves, a few feet apart –
Blue suede a dog or fox has chewed.
One, by himself, seemed pitiable enough,
Little victim unearthed by some large creature
From his orbit under the elm root.
The second carcass makes a duel of the affair:
Blind twins bitten by bad nature.

The sky’s far dome is sane and clear.
Leaves, undoing their yellow caves
Between the road and the lake water,
Bare no sinister spaces. Already
The moles look neutral as the stones.
Their corkscrew noses, their white hands
Uplifted, stiffen in a family pose.
Difficult to imagine how fury struck –
Dissolved now, smoke of an old war.

ii

Nightly the battle-shouts start up
In the ear of the veteran, and again
I enter the soft pelt of the mole.
Light’s death to them: they shrivel in it.
They move through their mute rooms while I sleep,
After the fat children of root and rock.
By day, only the topsoil heaves.
Down there, one is alone.

Outsize hands prepare a path,
They go before: opening the veins,
Delving for the appendages
Of beetles, sweetbreads, shards – to be eaten
Of final surfeit is just as far
From the door as ever. What happens between us
Happens in darkness, vanishes
Easy and often as each breath.

– Sylvia Plath


Do check out more previously posted inspirational blurbs, poetry and quotes here!