Poetry


The book of my favorite ditties, songs and rhymes

Pangur Bán
I and Pangur Bán, my cat 
'Tis a like task we are at; 
Hunting mice is his delight 
Hunting words I sit all night. 

Better far than praise of men 
'Tis to sit with book and pen; 
Pangur bears me no ill will, 
He too plies his simple skill. 

'Tis a merry thing to see 
At our tasks how glad are we, 
When at home we sit and find 
Entertainment to our mind. 

Oftentimes a mouse will stray 
In the hero Pangur's way: 
Oftentimes my keen thought set 
Takes a meaning in its net. 

'Gainst the wall he sets his eye 
Full and fierce and sharp and sly; 
'Gainst the wall of knowledge I 
All my little wisdom try. 

When a mouse darts from its den, 
O how glad is Pangur then! 
O what gladness do I prove 
When I solve the doubts I love! 

So in peace our tasks we ply, 
Pangur Bán, my cat, and I; 
In our arts we find our bliss, 
I have mine and he has his. 

Practice every day has made 
Pangur perfect in his trade; 
I get wisdom day and night 
Turning darkness into light. 

Written by an unknown Irish Monk, a student of the monastery of Carinthia on a copy of St Paul’s Epistles. 8th century. Translated by Robin Flower.

Why?
Something's going wrong,
With a singer and a song,
And the music isn't gentle anymore.
There's a mist across the moon,
And the Sun's too hot at noon,
And the house is dark behind the broken door.

Where the flowers used to grow,
Withered leaves are hanging low,
And the constant shadow lies across the floor.
There's a strange and empty sky,
Where the wild birds used to fly,
And I never tasted bitter rain before.

And will the grass be gone from underneath the sky?
Will the golden flower wither soon and die?
Will the fire burn out the the land?
And the seas fill up with sand?
Will the last word ever spoken be why?
Will the last word ever spoken be why?

Now someone's lost the plan,
For the Brotherhood of Man,
And knowone's trying to find it anymore.
And the wind's become a sigh,
From those who hate and those who die,
And the waves are black and slow along the shore.

And will the Sun be gone from underneath the sky?
Will the golden flower wither soon and die?
Will the fire burn out the the land?
Will the seas fill up with sand?
Will the last word ever spoken be why?
Will the last word ever spoken be why, why, why?
Will the last word ever spoken be why?

An unknown woman in Cornwall.

The Last Farewall
There's a ship lies rigged and ready in the harbor
Tomorrow for old England she sails
Far away from your land of endless sunshine
To my land full of rainy skies and gales
And I shall be aboard that ship tomorrow
Though my heart is full of tears at this farewell

For you are beautiful, I have loved you dearly
More dearly than the spoken word can tell
For you are beautiful, I have loved you dearly
More dearly than the spoken word can tell

I've heard there's a wicked war a-blazing
And the taste of war I know so very well
Even now I see the foreign flag a-raising
Their guns on fire as we sail into hell
I have no fear of death, it brings no sorrow
But how bitter will be this last farewell

For you are beautiful, I have loved you dearly
More dearly than the spoken word can tell
For you are beautiful, I have loved you dearly
More dearly than the spoken word can tell

Though death and darkness gather all about me
My ship be torn apart upon the seas
I shall smell again the fragrance of these islands
And the heaving waves that brought me once to thee
And should I return home safe again to England
I shall watch the English mist roll through the dale

For you are beautiful, I have loved you dearly
More dearly than the spoken word can tell
For you are beautiful, I have loved you dearly
More dearly than the spoken word can tell

On the scrapping of the Ark RoyalAn unknown woman in Cornwall.

The Curse of Wisdom

You will live a long life and it will be rich and complex, with sadness and joy mixed so often you cannot distinguish between them. Life will make you a wise soul because it will be hard, and when you die, you will sit on God's favored side, to render advice on the affairs of me. All this you will have; but this you will lose. You will never know what is truth, and never know certainty. All things will be ambiguous, for this is the curse of wisdom.

Unknown
Humor
Travel, trouble, music,art.
A kiss, a frock, a rhyme.
I never said they feed my  heart
But still they pass the time.

Dorothy Parker

"If I have any more to drink, I'll be under the host!".

Dorothy Parker

Andre Previn went to Heaven a little bit too soon.
St. Peter said, "You're not quite dead. Come back this afternoon."

Spike Milligan

Shakespeare
...if you act more in sorrow than in anger, if your wish is father to
the thought, if your lost property has vanished into thin air, you are
quoting Shakespeare; if you have ever refused to budge an inch or
suffered from green-eyed jealousy, were  tongue-tied, a tower of
strength, hoodwinked or in a pickle, if you have knitted your brows,
made a virtue out of necessity, insisted on fair play, slept not one
wink, stood on ceremony, danced attendance (on your lord and master),
laughed yourself into stitches, had short shrift, cold comfort or too
much of a good thing, if you have seen better days or lived in a fool's
paradise - why, be that as it may, the more fool you, for it is a
foregone conclusion that you are (as good luck would have it) quoting
Shakespeare; if you think it is early days and clear out of the bag and
baggage, if you think it is high time and that that is the long and
short of it, if you believe that the game is up and that truth will out
even if it involves your own flesh and blood, if you lie low till the
crack of doom because you suspect foul play, if you have your teeth set
on edge (at one fell swoop) without rhyme or reason, then - to give the
devil his due - if the truth were known (for surely you have a tongue in
your head) you are quoting Shakespeare; even if you bid me good riddance
and send me packing, if you wish I was dead as a door nail, if you think
I am an eyesore, a laughing stock, the devil incarnate, a stony-hearted
villain, bloody-minded or a blinking idiot, then - by Jove! O Lord! Tut,
tut! for goodness' sake! what the dickens! but me no buts - it is all
one to  me, for you are quoting Shakespeare.

Bernard Levin.

War
... The very last act of man's silly cleverness will be his own destruction ...

Bertrand Russell.

Love Heart

Red roses were her favorites, her name was also Rose. And every year her husband sent them, tied with pretty bows. The year he died, the roses were delivered to her door. The card said, "Be my Valentine", like all the years before. Each year he sent her roses, and the note would always say, "I love you even more this year, than last year on this day. My love for you will always grow, with every passing year." She knew this was the last time that the roses would appear. She thought, he ordered roses in advance before this day. Her loving husband did not know, that he would pass away. He always liked to do things early, way before the time. Then, if he got too busy, everything would work out fine. She trimmed the stems, and placed them in a very special vase. Then, sat the vase beside the portrait of his smiling face. She would sit for hours, in her husband's favorite chair. While staring at his picture, and the roses sitting there. A year went by, and it was hard to live without her mate. With loneliness and solitude, that had become her fate. Then, the very hour, as on Valentines before, The doorbell rang, and there were roses, sitting by her door. She brought the roses in, and then just looked at them in shock.Then, went to get the telephone, to call the florist shop. The owner answered, and she asked him, if he would explain, Why would someone do this to her, causing her such pain? "I know your husband passed away, more than a year ago," . The owner said, "I knew you'd call, and you would want to know. The flowers you received today, were paid for in advance. Your husband always planned ahead, he left nothing to chance. There is a standing order, that I have on file down here, And he has paid, well in advance, you'll get them every year.

There also is another thing, that I think you should know, He wrote a special little card...he did this years ago. Then, should ever I find out that he's no longer here, That's the card...that should be sent, to you the following year." She thanked him and hung up the phone, her tears now flowing hard. Her fingers shaking, as she slowly reached to get the card. Inside the card, she saw that he had written her a note. Then, as she stared in total silence, this is what he wrote... "Hello my love, I know it's been a year since I've been gone, I hope it hasn't been too hard for you to overcome. I know it must be lonely, and the pain is very real. For if it was the other way, I know how I would feel. The love we shared made everything so beautiful in life. I loved you more than words can say, you were the perfect wife. You were my friend and lover, you fulfilled my every need. I know it's only been a year, but please try not to grieve. I want you to be happy, even when you shed your tears. That is why the roses will be sent to you for years. When you get these roses, think of all the happiness, That we had together, and how both of us were blessed. I have always loved you and I know I always will. But, my love, you must go on, you have some living still. Please...try to find happiness, while living out your days. I know it is not easy, but I hope you find some ways. The roses will come every year, and they will only stop, When your door's not answered, when the florist stops to knock. He will come five times that day, in case you have gone out. But after his last visit, he will know without a doubt, To take the roses to the place, where I've instructed him, And place the roses where we are, together once again. Sometimes in life, you find a special friend; Someone who hanges your life just by being part of it. Someone who makes you laugh until you can't stop; Someone who makes you believe that there really is good in the world. Someone who convinces you that there really is an unlocked door just waiting for you to open it.

Unknown
Don Quijote
Through the woodland through the valley comes a horseman wild and free
Tilting at the windmills passing who can the brave young horseman be
He is wild but he is mellow, he is strong but he is weak
He is cruel but he is gentle, he is wise but he is meek

Reaching for his saddlebags he takes a battered book into his hand
Standing like prophet bold he shouts across the ocean to the shore
Till he can shout no more

I have come o'er moor and mountain like a hawk upon the wing
I was once a shining knight who was the guardian of a king
I have searched the whole world over, looking for a place to sleep
I have seen the strong survive and I have seen the lean grow weak

See the children of the earth who wake to find the table bare
See the gentry in the country riding off to take the air

Reaching for his saddlebags he takes a rusty sword into his hand
Then striking up a knightly pose he shouts across the ocean to the shore
Till he can shout no more

See the jailer with his key who locks away all trace of sin
See the judge upon the bench who tries the case as best he can
See the wise and wicked ones who feed upon life's sacred fire
See the soldier with his gun who must be dead to be admired

See the man who tips the needle, see the man who buys and sells
See the one who puts the collar on the ones who dare not tell
See the drunkard in the tavern stemming gold to make ends meet
See the youth in ghetto black condemned to life upon the street

Reaching for his saddlebags he takes a tarnished cross into his hand
Then standing like a preacher now he shouts across the ocean to the shore
Then in a blaze of tangled hooves he gallops off across the dusty plain
In vain to search again, where no one will hear  (pause)

Through the woodland through the valley comes a horseman wild and free
Tilting at the windmills passing who can the brave young horseman be
He is wild but he is mellow, he is strong but he is weak
He is cruel but he is gentle, he is wise but he is meek
Gordon LightFoot
Canadian Railroad Trilogy
There was a time in this fair land when the railroads did not run
When the wild majestic mountains stood alone against the sun
And long before the white man and long before the wheel
When the green dark forest was too silent to be real

But time has no beginnings and hist'ry has no bounds
As to this verdant country they came from all around
They sailed upon her waterways and they walked the forests tall

And built the mines the mills and the factories for the good of us all

And when the young man's fancy was turning in the spring
The railroad men grew restless for to hear the hammers ring
Their minds were overflowing with the visions of the day
With many a fortune won and lost and many a debt to pay... For they

Looked in the future and what did they see
They saw an iron road runnin' from the sea to the sea
Bringin the goods to a young growin' land
All up from the seaports and into her hands

Look away said they across this mighty land
From the eastern shore to the western strand

Bring in the workers and bring up the rails 
We've gotta lay down the tracks and tear up the trails
Open 'er heart let the lifeblood flow
Gotta get on our way cause we're moving too slow

Bring in the workers and bring up the rails 
We've gotta lay down the tracks and tear up the trails
Open 'er heart let the lifeblood flow
Gotta get on our way cause we're moving too slow
Get on our way cause we're movin' too slow...

Behind the blue Rockies the sun is declinin'
The stars they come stealin' at the close of the day
Across the wide prairie our loved ones lie sleeping
Beyond the dark oceans in a place far away

We are the navvies who work upon the railway 
Swingin our hammers in the bright mornin' sun
Livin' on stew and drinking bad whiskey
Bendin' our old backs till the long days are done

We are the navvies who work upon the railway 
Swingin our hammers in the bright mornin' sun
Layin' down track and buildin' the bridges
Bendin' our old backs till the railroad is done...

So over the mountains and over the plains
Into the muskeg and into the rain
Up the St. Lawrence all the way to Gaspe
Swingin' our hammers and drawin' our pay

Drivin' 'em in and tyin' 'em down
Away to the bunkhouse and into the town
A dollar a day and a place for my head
A drink to the livin' a toast to the dead

Oh the song of the future has been sung, all the battles have been won 
O'er the mountain tops we stand, all the world at our command
We have opened up this soil with our teardrops...and our toil...  For there

Was a time in this fair land when the railroads did not run
When the wild majestic mountains stood alone against the sun
And long before the white man and long before the wheel
When the green dark forest was too silent to be real
When the green dark forest was too silent to be real
And many are the dead men...too silent...      to be real
Gordon Lightfoot
If not for you,
Babe, I couldn't find the door,
Couldn't even see the floor,
I'd be sad and blue,
If not for you.

If not for you,
Babe, I'd lay awake all night,
Wait for the mornin' light
To shine in through,
But it would not be new,
If not for you.

If not for you
My sky would fall,
Rain would gather too.
Without your love I'd be nowhere at all,
I'd be lost if not for you,
And you know it's true.

If not for you
My sky would fall,
Rain would gather too.
Without your love I'd be nowhere at all,
Oh! what would I do
If not for you.

If not for you,
Winter would have no spring,
Couldn't hear the robin sing,
I just wouldn't have a clue,
Anyway it wouldn't ring true,
If not for you.

Bob Dylan


Politics

Capitalism breeds unequality of opportunity and Communism breeds equality of poverty.

Unknown
Lust in the Dust
Then at my back I always hear
Times wing'ed chariot hurrying near;
And yonder all before us lie
Deserts of vast eternity.

Thy beauty shall no more be found,
Nor, in thy marble vault shall sound
My echoing song; then worms shall try
That long preserved virginity,

And your quaint honour turn to dust,
And into ashes all my lust:
The grave's a fine and private place,
But none, I think, do there embrace.... 

Andrew Marvell, 'To his coy mistress'.

Sanity
The mind is its own place, and in itself
Can make a heaven of hell, a hell of heaven ...

"I bid still as true today !"

Unknown.

The Almighty
Him the Almighty Power
Hurled headlong flaming from the ethereal sky
With hideous ruin and combustion down
To bottomless perdition, there to dwell
in adamantine chains and penal fire,...

John Milton, 'Paradise Lost'.

Darkness
What in me is dark
Illumine, what is low raise and support

Unknown

The Times They Are A Changing
Come gather round people wherever you roam  
And admit that the waters around you have grown  
And accept it that soon you'll be drenched to the bone  
If your time to you is worth saving  
Then you'd better start swimming or you'll sink like a stone  
For the times, they are a changing  

Come writers and critics who prophesize with your pens  
And keep your eyes open, the chance won't come again  
And don't speak too soon, the wheel's still in spin  
And there's no telling who that it's naming  
Oh the loser will be later to win  
For the times, they are a changing  

Come senators, congressmen, please head the call  
Don't stand in the doorway, don't block up the hall  
For he that gets hurt will be her that has stalled  
The battle outside ragging will soon shake your windows  
And rattle your hall  
For the times, they are a changing  

Come mothers and fathers all over this land  
And don't criticize what you can't understand  
Your sons and your daughter are beyond your command  
Your old role is rapidly aging  
Please get out of the new one if you can't lend a hand  
For the times they are a changing  

The line, it is drawn, the curse, it is cast  
The slow one will later be fast  
And the present now will soon be the past  
The order is rapidly fading  
The first one now will later be last  
For the times, they are a changing  

Robert Alan Zimmerman

Mr Tambourine Man

Hey! Mr. Tambourine Man, play a song for me,
I'm not sleepy and there is no place I'm going to.
Hey! Mr. Tambourine Man, play a song for me,
In the jingle jangle morning I'll come followin' you.

Though I know that evenin's empire has returned into sand,
Vanished from my hand,
Left me blindly here to stand but still not sleeping.
My weariness amazes me, I'm branded on my feet,
I have no one to meet
And the ancient empty street's too dead for dreaming.

Hey! Mr. Tambourine Man, play a song for me,
I'm not sleepy and there is no place I'm going to.
Hey! Mr. Tambourine Man, play a song for me,
In the jingle jangle morning I'll come followin' you.

Take me on a trip upon your magic swirlin' ship,
My senses have been stripped, my hands can't feel to grip,
My toes too numb to step, wait only for my boot heels
To be wanderin'.
I'm ready to go anywhere, I'm ready for to fade
Into my own parade, cast your dancing spell my way,
I promise to go under it.

Hey! Mr. Tambourine Man, play a song for me,
I'm not sleepy and there is no place I'm going to.
Hey! Mr. Tambourine Man, play a song for me,
In the jingle jangle morning I'll come followin' you.

Though you might hear laughin', spinnin', swingin' madly across the sun,
It's not aimed at anyone, it's just escapin' on the run
And but for the sky there are no fences facin'.
And if you hear vague traces of skippin' reels of rhyme
To your tambourine in time, it's just a ragged clown behind,
I wouldn't pay it any mind, it's just a shadow you're
Seein' that he's chasing.

Hey! Mr. Tambourine Man, play a song for me,
I'm not sleepy and there is no place I'm going to.
Hey! Mr. Tambourine Man, play a song for me,
In the jingle jangle morning I'll come followin' you.

Then take me disappearin' through the smoke rings of my mind,
Down the foggy ruins of time, far past the frozen leaves,
The haunted, frightened trees, out to the windy beach,
Far from the twisted reach of crazy sorrow.
Yes, to dance beneath the diamond sky with one hand waving free,
Silhouetted by the sea, circled by the circus sands,
With all memory and fate driven deep beneath the waves,
Let me forget about today until tomorrow.

Hey! Mr. Tambourine Man, play a song for me,
I'm not sleepy and there is no place I'm going to.
Hey! Mr. Tambourine Man, play a song for me,
In the jingle jangle morning I'll come followin' you.
 
Robert Alan Zimmerman

She Belongs to Me

She's got everything she needs,
She's an artist, she don't look back.
She's got everything she needs,
She's an artist, she don't look back.
She can take the dark out of the nighttime
And paint the daytime black.

You will start out standing
Proud to steal her anything she sees.
You will start out standing
Proud to steal her anything she sees.
But you will wind up peeking through her keyhole
Down upon your knees.

She never stumbles,
She's got no place to fall.
She never stumbles,
She's got no place to fall.
She's nobody's child,
The Law can't touch her at all.

She wears an Egyptian ring
That sparkles before she speaks.
She wears an Egyptian ring
That sparkles before she speaks.
She's a hypnotist collector,
You are a walking antique.

Bow down to her on Sunday,
Salute her when her birthday comes.
Bow down to her on Sunday,
Salute her when her birthday comes.
For Halloween give her a trumpet
And for Christmas, buy her a drum.
Robert Alan Zimmerman
My Back Pages

Crimson flames tied through my ears
Rollin' high and mighty traps
Pounced with fire on flaming roads
Using ideas as my maps
"We'll meet on edges, soon," said I
Proud 'neath heated brow.
Ah, but I was so much older then, 
I'm younger than that now.

Half-wracked prejudice leaped forth
"Rip down all hate," I screamed
Lies that life is black and white
Spoke from my skull. I dreamed
Romantic facts of musketeers
Foundationed deep, somehow.
Ah, but I was so much older then,
I'm younger than that now.

Girls' faces formed the forward path
From phony jealousy
To memorizing politics
Of ancient history
Flung down by corpse evangelists
Unthought of, though, somehow.
Ah, but I was so much older then,
I'm younger than that now.

A self-ordained professor's tongue
Too serious to fool
Spouted out that liberty
Is just equality in school
"Equality," I spoke the word
As if a wedding vow.
Ah, but I was so much older then,
I'm younger than that now.

In a soldier's stance, I aimed my hand
At the mongrel dogs who teach
Fearing not that I'd become my enemy
In the instant that I preach
My pathway led by confusion boats
Mutiny from stern to bow.
Ah, but I was so much older then,
I'm younger than that now.

Yes, my guard stood hard when abstract threats
Too noble to neglect
Deceived me into thinking
I had something to protect
Good and bad, I define these terms
Quite clear, no doubt, somehow.
Ah, but I was so much older then,
I'm younger than that now.
Robert Alan Zimmerman
You Ain't Goin' Nowhere

Clouds so swift
Rain won't lift
Gate won't close
Railings froze
Get your mind off wintertime
You ain't goin' nowhere
Whoo-ee! Ride me high
Tomorrow's the day
My bride's gonna come
Oh, oh, are we gonna fly
Down in the easy chair!

I don't care
How many letters they sent
Morning came and morning went
Pick up your money
And pack up your tent
You ain't goin' nowhere
Whoo-ee! Ride me high
Tomorrow's the day
My bride's gonna come
Oh, oh, are we gonna fly
Down in the easy chair!

Buy me a flute
And a gun that shoots
Tailgates and substitutes
Strap yourself
To the tree with roots
You ain't goin' nowhere
Whoo-ee! Ride me high
Tomorrow's the day
My bride's gonna come
Oh, oh, are we gonna fly
Down in the easy chair!

Genghis Khan
He could not keep
All his kings
Supplied with sleep
We'll climb that hill no matter how steep
When we get up to it
Whoo-ee! Ride me high
Tomorrow's the day
My bride's gonna come
Oh, oh, are we gonna fly
Down in the easy chair!
Robert Alan Zimmerman
Positively 4th Street

You got a lotta nerve
To say you are my friend
When I was down
You just stood there grinning

You got a lotta nerve
To say you gota helping hand to lend
You just want to be on
The side that's winning

You say I let you down
You know it's not like that
If you're so hurt
Why then don't you show it

You say you lost your faith
But that's not where it's at
You had no faith to lose
And you know it

I know the reason
That you talk behind my back
I used to be among the crowd
You're in with

Do you take me for such a fool
To think I'd make contact
With the one who tries to hide
What he don't know to begin with

You see me on the street
You always act surprised
You say, "How are you?" "Good luck"
But you don't mean it

When you know as well as me
You'd rather see me paralyzed
Why don't you just come out once
And scream it

No, I do not feel that good
When I see the heartbreaks you embrace
If I was a master thief
Perhaps I'd rob them

And now I know you're dissatisfied
With your position and your place
Don't you understand
It's not my problem

I wish that for just one time
You could stand inside my shoes
And just for that one moment
I could be you

Yes, I wish that for just one time
You could stand inside my shoes
You'd know what a drag it is
To see you

Robert Alan Zimmerman


For all of Bob Dylan's Lyrics http://orad.dent.kyushu-u.ac.jp/dylan/song.html
The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock
 
LET us go then, you and I,
When the evening is spread out against the sky
Like a patient etherised upon a table;
Let us go, through certain half-deserted streets,
The muttering retreats        5
Of restless nights in one-night cheap hotels
And sawdust restaurants with oyster-shells:
Streets that follow like a tedious argument
Of insidious intent
To lead you to an overwhelming question …        10
Oh, do not ask, “What is it?”
Let us go and make our visit.
 
In the room the women come and go
Talking of Michelangelo.
 
The yellow fog that rubs its back upon the window-panes,        15
The yellow smoke that rubs its muzzle on the window-panes
Licked its tongue into the corners of the evening,
Lingered upon the pools that stand in drains,
Let fall upon its back the soot that falls from chimneys,
Slipped by the terrace, made a sudden leap,        20
And seeing that it was a soft October night,
Curled once about the house, and fell asleep.
 
And indeed there will be time
For the yellow smoke that slides along the street,
Rubbing its back upon the window-panes;        25
There will be time, there will be time
To prepare a face to meet the faces that you meet;
There will be time to murder and create,
And time for all the works and days of hands
That lift and drop a question on your plate;        30
Time for you and time for me,
And time yet for a hundred indecisions,
And for a hundred visions and revisions,
Before the taking of a toast and tea.
 
In the room the women come and go        35
Talking of Michelangelo.
 
And indeed there will be time
To wonder, “Do I dare?” and, “Do I dare?”
Time to turn back and descend the stair,
With a bald spot in the middle of my hair—        40
[They will say: “How his hair is growing thin!”]
My morning coat, my collar mounting firmly to the chin,
My necktie rich and modest, but asserted by a simple pin—
[They will say: “But how his arms and legs are thin!”]
Do I dare        45
Disturb the universe?
In a minute there is time
For decisions and revisions which a minute will reverse.
 
For I have known them all already, known them all:—
Have known the evenings, mornings, afternoons,        50
I have measured out my life with coffee spoons;
I know the voices dying with a dying fall
Beneath the music from a farther room.
  So how should I presume?
 
And I have known the eyes already, known them all—        55
The eyes that fix you in a formulated phrase,
And when I am formulated, sprawling on a pin,
When I am pinned and wriggling on the wall,
Then how should I begin
To spit out all the butt-ends of my days and ways?        60
  And how should I presume?
 
And I have known the arms already, known them all—
Arms that are braceleted and white and bare
[But in the lamplight, downed with light brown hair!]
It is perfume from a dress        65
That makes me so digress?
Arms that lie along a table, or wrap about a shawl.
  And should I then presume?
  And how should I begin?
      .      .      .      .      .
Shall I say, I have gone at dusk through narrow streets        70
And watched the smoke that rises from the pipes
Of lonely men in shirt-sleeves, leaning out of windows?…
 
I should have been a pair of ragged claws
Scuttling across the floors of silent seas.
      .      .      .      .      .
And the afternoon, the evening, sleeps so peacefully!        75
Smoothed by long fingers,
Asleep … tired … or it malingers,
Stretched on the floor, here beside you and me.
Should I, after tea and cakes and ices,
Have the strength to force the moment to its crisis?        80
But though I have wept and fasted, wept and prayed,
Though I have seen my head [grown slightly bald] brought in upon a platter,
I am no prophet—and here’s no great matter;
I have seen the moment of my greatness flicker,
And I have seen the eternal Footman hold my coat, and snicker,        85
And in short, I was afraid.
 
And would it have been worth it, after all,
After the cups, the marmalade, the tea,
Among the porcelain, among some talk of you and me,
Would it have been worth while,        90
To have bitten off the matter with a smile,
To have squeezed the universe into a ball
To roll it toward some overwhelming question,
To say: “I am Lazarus, come from the dead,
Come back to tell you all, I shall tell you all”—        95
If one, settling a pillow by her head,
  Should say: “That is not what I meant at all.
  That is not it, at all.”
 
And would it have been worth it, after all,
Would it have been worth while,        100
After the sunsets and the dooryards and the sprinkled streets,
After the novels, after the teacups, after the skirts that trail along the floor—
And this, and so much more?—
It is impossible to say just what I mean!
But as if a magic lantern threw the nerves in patterns on a screen:        105
Would it have been worth while
If one, settling a pillow or throwing off a shawl,
And turning toward the window, should say:
  “That is not it at all,
  That is not what I meant, at all.”
      .      .      .      .      .
        110
No! I am not Prince Hamlet, nor was meant to be;
Am an attendant lord, one that will do
To swell a progress, start a scene or two,
Advise the prince; no doubt, an easy tool,
Deferential, glad to be of use,        115
Politic, cautious, and meticulous;
Full of high sentence, but a bit obtuse;
At times, indeed, almost ridiculous—
Almost, at times, the Fool.
 
I grow old … I grow old …        120
I shall wear the bottoms of my trousers rolled.
 
Shall I part my hair behind? Do I dare to eat a peach?
I shall wear white flannel trousers, and walk upon the beach.
I have heard the mermaids singing, each to each.
 
I do not think that they will sing to me.        125
 
I have seen them riding seaward on the waves
Combing the white hair of the waves blown back
When the wind blows the water white and black.
 
We have lingered in the chambers of the sea
By sea-girls wreathed with seaweed red and brown        130
Till human voices wake us, and we drown.
 
TS Elliot
I will be a puff of wind in history, dust. Very few will remember me, who remembers dust?

The mind is its own place, and in itself can make a heaven of hell, a hell of heaven.
Milton
CHILDREN LEARN WHAT THEY LIVE
If children live with criticism, 
they learn to condemn. 
If children live with hostility, 
they learn to fight. 
If children live with fear, 
they learn to be apprehensive. 
If children live with pity, 
they learn to feel sorry for themselves. 
If children live with ridicule, 
they learn to be shy. 
If children live with jealousy, 
they learn what envy is. 
If children live with shame, 
they learn to feel guilty. 
If children live with TOLERANCE, 
they learn to be PATIENT. 
If children live with ENCOURAGEMENT, 
they learn to be CONFIDENT. 
If children live with PRAISE, 
they learn to APPRECIATE. 
If children live with APPROVAL, 
they learn to BE THEMSELVES. 
If children live with ACCEPTANCE, 
they learn to find LOVE IN THE WORLD. 
If children live with RECOGNITION, 
they learn to have a GOAL. 
If children live with SHARING, 
they learn to be GENEROUS. 
If children live with HONESTY and FAIRNESS, 
they learn what TRUTH and JUSTICE are. 
If children live with SECURITY, 
they learn to have FAITH in themselves 
and in those around them. 
If children live with FRIENDLINESS, 
they learn that the world is a nice place in which to LIVE. 
If children live with SERENITY, 
they learn to have PEACE OF MIND. 

With what are your children living? 

Dorothy L. Nolte


Bits and Pieces

As tedious as a twice told tale, Vexing the dull ear of a drowsy man and bitter shame hath spoiled the sweet world's taste, That yields nought but shame and bitterness.

I am a scribbled form drawn with a pen upon a parchment.

There is no sound foundation set on blood, no certain life achieved by others death.

Grief fills the room up with my absent child, Lies in his bed, walks up and down with me, Puts on his pretty looks, repeats his words, Remembers me of all his gracious parts, Stuffs out his vacant garments with his form.

Then have I reason to be fond of grief.

This England never did, nor ever shall, Lie at the proud foot of a conquerer.

Come the three corners of the world in arms, And we shall shock them.

There are three types of people in the world: those who make things happen, those who watch things happen, and those who do not know that anything is happening.

I refuse to spend time with someone who does recognize my magnificence.

All that can be said accurately about a man who thinks he is a poached egg is that he is in the minority - John Burke.

Knowledge often masquerades as wisdom.

"I'm the greatest baseball player in the world", tossing the ball in the air. He missed. Undaunted. "I'm the greatest baseball player ever", missing again. Examing the ball and bat carefully, he tossed the ball in the air again, missing again, citing, "I'm the greatest baseball player who ever lived". "Wow!", he exclaimed, "What a pitcher!"

Don't think about failure. Worry about the chances you miss when you don't try.

True courage is not the brutal force of vulgar heroes but rather the firm resolve of virtue and reason.

A man's worst enemies are the men of his own house - his daemons - the nightmares that haunt him - his fears.

Nothing affects our children as profoundly as the unlived lives of our parents. Set a good example for happiness. CG Jung.

Success is when you don't know if you're working or you're playing. Warren Beaty.

Life is something to be spent, not saved. DH Lawrence.

Small minds discuss people, average minds discuss events, great minds discuss ideas. Anonymous.

It is not our condition, but the caliber of our soul, that makes us happy. (Voltaire)

When I play with my cat, who knows whether she is not amusing herself with me more than I with her. (Michel de Montaigne 17th century French philosopher).


Hope - Do women judge men by their capacity for hope? How should I know?
But groundless hope, like unconditional love, is the only kind worth having.-- John Perry Barlow 

The capacity for hope is the most significant fact of life. It provides human beings with a sense of destination and the energy to get started.--Norman Cousins 

Enthusiasm is the yeast that makes your hopes rise to the stars. Enthusiasm is the sparkle in your eyes, the swing in your gait, the grip of your hand, the irresistible surge of will and energy to excite your ideas.--Henry Tor 

Expect to have hope rekindled. Expect your prayers to be answered in wondrous ways. The dry seasons in life do not last. The spring rains will come again.--Sarah Ban Breathnach 

Faith goes up the stairs that love has built and looks out the window which hope has opened.--Charles Spurgeon 

Fear less, hope more; eat less, chew more; whine less, breathe more; talk less, say more; hate less, love more; and all good things are yours.--Swedish proverb 

He that lives in hope danceth without musick.--George Herbert 

Hold your head high, stick your chest out. You can make it. It gets dark sometimes, but morning comes.... Keep hope alive.--Jesse Jackson 

Hope begins in the dark, the stubborn hope that if you just show up and try to do the right thing, the dawn will come. You wait and watch and work: you don't give up.--Anne Lamott (Bird by Bird: Some Instructions on Writing and Life) 

Hope, deceiving as it is, serves at least to lead us to the end of our lives by an agreeable route.--François de la Rochefoucauld 

Hope is a good thing--maybe the best thing, and no good thing ever dies.--Stephen King (The Shawshank Redemption) 

Hope is a talent like any other.--Storm Jameson 

Hope is a vigorous principle ... it sets the head and heart to work, and animates a man to do his utmost.--Jeremy Collier 

Hope is generally a wrong guide, though it is good company along the way.--George Saville 

Hope is like a road in the country: there was never a road, but when many people walk on it, the road comes into existence.--Lin Yutang 

Hope...is the companion of power, and the mother of success; for who so hopes has within him the gift of miracles.--Samuel Smiles 

Hope, like the gleaming taper's light
Adorns and cheers our way;
And still, as darker grows the night,
Emits a brighter ray.--Oliver Goldsmith (The Captivity) 

Hope springs eternal in the human breast:
Man never is, but always To be Blest.--Alexander Pope (Essay on Man, Epistle 1, 1.95) 

Hope unbelieved is always considered nonsense. But hope believed is history in the process of being changed.--Jim Wallis (The Soul of Politics: a Practical and Prophetic Vision for Change) 

I am not an optimist, because I am not sure that everything ends well. Nor am I a pessimist, because I am not sure that everything ends badly. I just carry hope in my heart.
Hope is the feeling that life and work have a meaning. You either have it or you don't, regardless of the state of the world that surrounds you.
Life without hope is an empty, boring, and useless life. I cannot imagine that I could strive for something if I did not carry hope in me.
I am thankful to God for this gift. It is as big as life itself.--Vaclav Havel 

I know the world is filled with troubles and many injustices. But reality is as beautiful as it is ugly. I think it is just as important to sing about beautiful mornings as it is to talk about slums. I just couldn't write anything without hope in it.--Oscar Hammerstein 

I simply can't build my hopes on a foundation of confusion, misery and death ... I think... peace and tranquillity will return again.--Anne Frank 

If you do not hope, you will not find what is beyond your hopes.--St. Clement of Alexandria 

In the darkest night to be certain of the dawn ... to go through Hell and to continue to trust in the goodness of God--this is the challenge and the way.--Abraham Joshua Heschel (A Passion for Truth) 

In the depths of winter, I finally learnt in me there was an invincible summer.--Albert Camus 

In the face of uncertainty, there is nothing wrong with hope.--Bernie S. Siegel 

Isn't it the moment of most profound doubt that gives birth to new certainties? Perhaps hopelessness is the very soil that nourishes human hope; perhaps one could never find sense in life without first experiencing its absurdity... --Vaclav Havel 

It is above all by the imagination that we achieve perception and compassion and hope.--Ursula LeGuin 

It is the around-the-corner brand of hope that prompts people to action, while the distant hope acts as an opiate.--Eric Hoffer (The Ordeal of Hope) 

Man is a creature of hope and invention, both of which belie the idea that things cannot be changed.--Tom Clancy (Debt of Honor) 

Men and women are limited not by the place of their birth, not by the color of their skin, but by the size of their hope.--John Johnson 

My theory has always been, that if we are to dream, the flatteries of hope are as cheap, and pleasanter, than the gloom of despair.--Thomas Jefferson 

No matter how difficult life can be the most important thing is to live it with hope.--Anonymous 

Nothing worth doing is completed in our lifetime; therefore we must be saved by hope. Nothing true or beautiful makes complete sense in any immediate context of history; therefore we must be saved by faith. Nothing we do, however virtuous, can be accomplished alone; therefore, we are saved by love.--Reinhold Niebuhr 

Of all the forces that make for a better world, none is so indispensable, none so powerful, as hope. Without hope people are only half alive. With hope they dream and think and work.--Charles Sawyer 

Our children are our only hope for the future, but we are their only hope for their present and their future.--Zig Ziglar (Zig Ziglar's Little Book of Big Quotes) 

People who build hope into their own lives and who share hope with others become powerful people.--Zig Ziglar (Jim Rohn's Weekly E-zine- January 13, 2004) 

Pride is one of the seven deadly sins; but it cannot be the pride of a mother in her children, for that is a compound of two cardinal virtues--faith and hope.--Charles Dickens (Nicholas Nickleby) 

So we beat on, boats against the current, borne back ceaselessly into the past.--F. Scott Fitzgerald 

A strange thing is memory, and hope; one looks backward, and the other forward; one is of today, the other of tomorrow. Memory is history recorded in our brain, memory is a painter, it paints pictures of the past and of the day.--Anna Mary Robertson ("Grandma") Moses 

The sudden disappointment of a hope leaves a scar which the ultimate fulfillment of that hope never entirely removes.--Thomas Hardy 

There are no hopeless situations, only people who think hopelessly.--Windred Newman 

There are three things I was born with in this world, and there are three things I will have until the day I die-hope, determination, and song.--Miriam Makeba 

There is no medicine like hope, no incentives so great, and no tonics so powerful as the expectation of something better tomorrow.--Orison Swett Marden 

...to hope till Hope creates from its own wreck the thing it contemplates…--Percy Bysshe Shelley (Prometheus Unbound) 

We judge of man's wisdom by his hope.--Ralph Waldo Emerson 

We must accept finite disappointment, but we must never lose infinite hope.--Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.  

When you do nothing, you feel overwhelmed and powerless. But when you get involved, you feel the sense of hope and accomplishment that comes from knowing you are working to make things better.--Pauline R. Kezer 

Whether we be young or old,
Our destiny, our being's heart and home,
Is with infinitude, and only there;
With hope it is, hope that can never die,
Effort and expectation, and desire,
And something evermore about to be.--William Wordsworth (The Prelude) 

Shakespeare on the Subject of Prejudice
Hath not a Jew eyes? Hath not a Jew hands, organs
dimensions, senses, affections, passions; fed with
the same food, hurt with the same weapons, subject
to the same diseases, heal'd by the same means
warm'd and cool'd by the same winter and summer
as a Christian is? If you prick us, do we not bleed?
If you tickle us, do we not laugh? If you poison us,
do we not die? And if you wrong us, shall we not revenge?
Shylock, The Merchant of Venice, Act III, Scene I

A state of war only serves as an excuse for domenstic tyranny - Alexander Solzhenitsyn