Emily Skaja, from Brute: Poems; “[It wasn’t about Love]”
— Jane Hirshfield from, “The Silence”, Each Happiness Ringed by Lions: Selected Poems
If I read a book and it makes my whole body so cold no fire can warm me, I know that is poetry. If I feel physically as if the top of my head were taken off, I know that is poetry. These are the only ways I know it. Is there any other way?
—Emily Dickinson, Selected Letters
100 years ago: Young Langston Hughes publishes his first poem in 1921
Excerpt from his first published poem
"“The Negro Speaks of Rivers” (1921): Written when he was 17 years old on a train to Mexico City to see his father, “The Negro Speaks of Rivers” was Hughes’ first poem which received critical acclaim after it was published in the June 1921 issue of the NAACP magazine The Crisis." -From biography.com:
Though my soul may set in darkness, it will rise in perfect light;
I have loved the stars too fondly to be fearful of the night.
Sarah Williams, The Old Astronomer to His Pupil
"Arise arise you citizens of the world use your lungs. Talk back to the Tyrants all they are afraid of are your tongues."
Allen Ginsberg, Capitol Air
Thrilled by its encounter with the first daffodils that it had ever seen, the little green dragon begged to see more flowers. In its arid and windswept homeland of faraway Patadragonia, the strange wee creature had rarely seen a flower, and certainly nothing as beautiful as the spring flowers of the temperate northern countries.
But it was only mid-March in the wild west Highlands of Scotland: there had evidently been plenty of snowdrops earlier on, but they had all finished flowering now, and most of the crocuses which normally grew in Algy’s assistant’s lawn had been flattened by the wind and the rain. Algy was temporarily at a loss, until his assistant pointed him at a wee raised box bed by her house wall, in which she had planted a new collection of spring bulbs the previous autumn. It was full of jewel-like crocuses which were only now beginning to turn their faces to the sun. The little green dragon was so enthralled by this new discovery that he began to glow in a purple hue.
Algy laughed, and recited an old poem to his funny little friend:
They heard the South wind sighing
A murmur of the rain;
And they knew that Earth was longing
To see them all again.
While the snow-drops still were sleeping
Beneath the silent sod;
They felt their new life pulsing
Within the dark, cold clod.
Not a daffodil nor daisy
Had dared to raise its head;
Not a fairhaired dandelion
Peeped timid from its bed;
Though a tremor of the winter
Did shivering through them run;
Yet they lifted up their foreheads
To greet the vernal sun.
And the sunbeams gave them welcome,
As did the morning air—
And scattered o’er their simple robes
Rich tints of beauty rare.
Soon a host of lovely flowers
From vales and woodland burst;
But in all that fair procession
The crocuses were first.
[Algy is quoting most of the poem The Crocuses by the 19th century American poet Frances Ellen Watkins Harper.]
Allen Ginsberg: Song in Allen Ginsberg: Howl and other Poems
The Crow (1994) by Alex Proyas
Eric quotes the 3rd and 4th verses from the 1st stanza of The Raven, a narrative poem by Edgar Allan Poe published in 1845
she has a wretched kind of power over you
that clasps around your neck
and holds down your aching wrists
until you can’t move
you do as she says
and you become so weak
you’re nothing without her
but a pile of ash from a raging fire
and the wood that was once your bones
decay and rot
until you beg and plead
for some sort of recoup
she laughs in your face
and you forget who you even were
in the first place
I’m nobody! Who are you?, Emily Dickinson
Lately, I hold your
name in my mouth like a talisman
Emily Skaja, from Brute: Poems; “Dear Katie”
— Jane Hirshfield from, “Salt Heart”, Each Happiness Ringed by Lions: Selected Poems
Charlotte Forten Grimké
1837 — 1914
Published poems in The Liberator. A founding member of the National Association of Colored Women, she continued to write essays and poems in her later years.
“To write is to suffer, but there is so much meaning in it that I must fight my battles on the page.”
— Ha Jin
Earlier poems of William Carlos Williams, 1938/1951
If only I --
The sound --
of the sparrows
& feel childhood
If only I could feel
me pulling back
& feel embraced
I would die
— Jim Morrison, Notebook and Journal Poems
Young flowers were whispering in melody
Edgar Allan Poe, Al Aaraaf
Rick Anderson, from “The Ghosts Are Laughing”
Text ID: Inevitably I will learn / —I am learning— / that being alone, / being lonely always, / being nothing forevermore / is a burden far greater / than I have ever known / and I cannot bear it.
"A Word" by Emily Dickinson (1830-1886)