Music Poems - Poems For Music
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I Am In Need Of Music - Poem by Elizabeth Bishop
I am in need of music that would flow
Over my fretful, feeling fingertips,
Over my bitter-tainted, trembling lips,
With melody, deep, clear, and liquid-slow.
Oh, for the healing swaying, old and low,
Of some song sung to rest the tired dead,
A song to fall like water on my head,
And over quivering limbs, dream flushed to glow!
There is a magic made by melody:
A spell of rest, and quiet breath, and cool
Heart, that sinks through fading colors deep
To the subaqueous stillness of the sea,
And floats forever in a moon-green pool,
Held in the arms of rhythm and of sleep.
Comments about I Am In Need Of Music by Elizabeth Bishop
I Am In Need Of Music
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When music sounds, gone is the earth I know, And all her lovely things even lovelier grow; Her flowers in vision flame, her forest trees Lift burdened branches, stilled with ecstasies. When music sounds, out of the water rise Naiads whose beauty dims my waking eyes, Rapt in strange dreams burns each enchanted face, With solemn echoing stirs their dwelling-place. When music sounds, all that I was I am Ere to this haunt of brooding dust I came; And from Time's woods break into distant song The swift-winged hours, as I hasten along.
Winter is icummen in, Lhude sing Goddamm. Raineth drop and staineth slop, And how the wind doth ramm! Sing: Goddamm. Skiddeth bus and sloppeth us, An ague hath my ham. Freezeth river, turneth liver, Damn you, sing: Goddamm. Goddamm, Goddamm, 'tis why I am, Goddamm, So 'gainst the winter's balm. Sing goddamm, damm, sing Goddamm. Sing goddamm, sing goddamm, DAMM.
Dirge Without Music
I am not resigned to the shutting away of loving hearts in the hard ground. So it is, and so it will be, for so it has been, time out of mind: Into the darkness they go, the wise and the lovely. Crowned With lilies and with laurel they go; but I am not resigned. Lovers and thinkers, into the earth with you. Be one with the dull, the indiscriminate dust. A fragment of what you felt, of what you knew, A formula, a phrase remains,—but the best is lost. The answers quick and keen, the honest look, the laughter, the love,— They are gone. They are gone to feed the roses. Elegant and curled Is the blossom. Fragrant is the blossom. I know. But I do not approve. More precious was the light in your eyes than all the roses in the world. Down, down, down into the darkness of the grave Gently they go, the beautiful, the tender, the kind; Quietly they go, the intelligent, the witty, the brave. I know. But I do not approve. And I am not resigned.
I have a friend who still believes in heaven. Not a stupid person, yet with all she knows, she literally talks to God. She thinks someone listens in heaven. On earth she's unusually competent. Brave too, able to face unpleasantness. We found a caterpillar dying in the dirt, greedy ants crawling over it. I'm always moved by disaster, always eager to oppose vitality But timid also, quick to shut my eyes. Whereas my friend was able to watch, to let events play out According to nature. For my sake she intervened Brushing a few ants off the torn thing, and set it down Across the road. My friend says I shut my eyes to God, that nothing else explains My aversion to reality. She says I'm like the child who Buries her head in the pillow So as not to see, the child who tells herself That light causes sadness- My friend is like the mother. Patient, urging me To wake up an adult like herself, a courageous person- In my dreams, my friend reproaches me. We're walking On the same road, except it's winter now; She's telling me that when you love the world you hear celestial music: Look up, she says. When I look up, nothing. Only clouds, snow, a white business in the trees Like brides leaping to a great height- Then I'm afraid for her; I see her Caught in a net deliberately cast over the earth- In reality, we sit by the side of the road, watching the sun set; From time to time, the silence pierced by a birdcall. It's this moment we're trying to explain, the fact That we're at ease with death, with solitude. My friend draws a circle in the dirt; inside, the caterpillar doesn't move. She's always trying to make something whole, something beautiful, an image Capable of life apart from her. We're very quiet. It's peaceful sitting here, not speaking, The composition Fixed, the road turning suddenly dark, the air Going cool, here and there the rocks shining and glittering- It's this stillness we both love. The love of form is a love of endings.