Saturday, November 20, 2021


 


A Taste of Walter de la Mare:


                                IN THE LOCAL MUSEUM

They stood - rain pelting at window, shrouded sea -

Tenderly hand in hand, too happy to talk;

And there, its amorous eye intent on me,

Plautus Impennis, the extinct Great Auk.


            WINTER COMPANY

Blackbird silent in the snow;

Motionless crocus in the mould;

Naked tree; and, cold and low, 

            Sun's wintry gold...

Lost for the while in their strange beauty - self how far! -

Lulled were my senses into a timeless dream;

As if the inmost secret of what they are

           Lay open in what they seem.


        ARROGANCE

I saw bleak Arrogance, with brows of brass,

Clad nape to sole in shimmering foil of lead,

Stark down his nose he stared;  a crown of glass

Aping the rainbow, on his tilted head.


His very presence drained the vital air;

He ate erect - stone-cold, self-crucified;

On either side of him an empty chair;

And sawdust trickled from his wounded side.


           AND SO TO BED

"Night-night, my Precious!";  "Sweet dreams, Sweet!"

"Heaven bless you, Child!" - the accustomed grown-ups said.

Two eyes gazed mutely back that none could meet,

Then turned to face Night's terrors overhead.  


Mr. de la Mare lived on the same street that Tennyson did but at a later date.  He also wrote a biography of Lewis Carroll which i'd love to get my hands on.  He was noted for his appreciation of child-like minds (why i identify with him, lol) and for his classic horror stories as well.  A rare and rarified personality;  not many of them left, nowadays...

22 comments:

  1. Oh, I love these! Especially the images in the first one. They are all very evocative of the scenes they describe. Thanks for sharing.

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    1. my pleasure! he's been one of my favorites for a long time: not so much his ghost stories as his sensitive apprehension of the world around us...

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  2. Those are great...I don't really know his poetry at all. Thanks!

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    1. you bet! i like his poems almost more, or maybe definitely more, than his stories...

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  3. I would like to get my hands on his biography of Lewis Carroll as well! I didn't know he wrote one. I would also like to get all of his horror stories based on the few I've read in anthologies.

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    1. it was pretty expensive (15$) from Abebooks, but i did order a copy... but i'm not exactly sure what it was i ordered: the description was a bit quirky... i'll let you know. Gutenberg might have some of his horror stories...

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  4. I love Walter de la Mare's poetry! I have a big old anthology of his that I'd love to read through at some point. Thanks for sharing these selections! I particularly like Arrogance.

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  5. 'Some one came knocking
    At my wee, small door;
    Someone came knocking;
    I'm sure-sure-sure...

    I know quite a few of his children's poems but nit the ones you shared above.

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    1. i just have a small collection, but i gather that he was fairly prolific. maybe i'll look for some more...

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  6. I'm familiar with many of his poems, but I didn't know he also wrote horror stories. Or that he wrote a biography of Lewis Carroll. That would be interesting to read!

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    1. he's just not very well known these days: one of those writers lost in the sargasso swamp of time... i don't read his horror stories much, they're too scary...

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  7. I've never read any of his poetry before, thank you for sharing this.

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    1. you're very welcome! i haven't read a lot of his poems or books either for that matter... i just happened to have a small collection of his poems and opened it by chance a few days ago... then i got his very short story about Alice from Wonderland which i haven't gotten to yet...

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    2. I have to admit that poetry is not always my thing. For some reason when it comes to poetry, my understanding of metaphor and imagery go straight out the window. Isn't it kind of funny how our brains work in some aspects (fiction, no problem) but not at all in others (poetry for me). You always have these unique finds, I love reading about them.

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  8. Happy Thanksgiving to everyone who splashes around with mudpuddle soup …..
    https://theharperspondgazette.blogspot.com/

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    1. ;and a Happy Thanksgiving to you, also, RT... i wondered what happened to your blogspot: I'll give this one a try...

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  9. And Happy Thanksgiving to you!

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    1. tx, Reese... i noted that there's a new post, graeme gibson's five legs, listed on Cleo's blog list under your cognomen, but it didn't show up on mine... is my computer having a conniption fit?

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    2. I accidentally hit publish when all I'd written was the title & then I quickly deleted it, but obviously not quickly enough...

      It's now mostly written & I should finish it soon because I read the book for Marcie's (BuriedInPrint) Margaret Atwood Reading Month, which is nearly done...

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    3. oh.. tx for letting me know... i'm in a state of permanent anxiety as regards the mysterious box (computer). it does seem to have a mind of its own, lol...

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