Re: When Your Pop Is The Poet Laureate Of England...

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Posted by GnomeDome on October 25, 2000 at 09:41:53:

In Reply to: When Your Pop Is The Poet Laureate Of England... posted by Doc M on October 25, 2000 at 09:32:56:


*it's frightening the way she pops up just when thoughts of her enter your head unbidden and half-formed. She indeed be witch.
In league with the divil. Burn her! Burn her!!

Nice poem by the way.

Gnome Dome

: ...this is what you get as a birthday present! Sometime a month
: or so ago, a few of you asked for the poem Cecil Day Lewis
: wrote upon the birth of his son, the Big D. I finally found
: in a large pile of books that I really must do something
: about one of these days. Here it is.

: The Newborn

: This mannikin who just now
: Broke prison and stepped free
: Into his own identity--
: Hand, foot, and brow
: A finished work, a breathing miniature--
: Was still, one night ago,
: A hope, a dread, a mere shape we
: Had lived with, only sure
: Something would grow
: Out of its coiled nine-month nonentity.

: Heaved hither on quickening throes,
: Tossed up on earth today,
: He sprawls limp as a castaway
: And nothing knows
: Beside the warm sleep of his origin.
: Soon lips and hands shall grope
: To try the world; this speck of clay
: And spirit shall begin
: To feed on hope,
: To learn how truth blows cold and loves betray.

: Now like a blank sheet
: His lineaments appear;
: But there's invisible writing here
: Which the day's heat
: Will show; legends older than language, glum
: Histories of the tribe,
: Directives from his near and dear--
: Charms, curses, rules of thumb --
: He will transcribe
: In his own blood, to write upon an heir.

: This morsel of man I've held--
: What potency it has,
: Though strengthless still and naked as
: A nut unshelled!
: Every newborn seems a reviving seed
: Or metaphor of the divine.
: Charged with the huge, weak power of grass
: To split rock. How we need
: Any least sign
: That our stone age can break, our winter pass!

: Welcome to earth, my child!
: Joybells of blossom swing,
: Lambs and lovers have their fling,
: The streets run wild
: With April airs and rumours of the sun.
: We time-worn folk renew
: Ourselves at your enchanted spring,
: As though mankind's begun
: Again in you.
: This is your birthday and our thanksgiving.

: From Pegasus and Other Poems by C. Day Lewis

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