November 20, 2003

Unfortunate [Filed under: Brooke, Rupert]

Unfortunate

Heart, you are as restless as a paper scrap
  That’s tossed down dusty pavements by the wind ;
  Saying, ‘She is most wise, patient and kind.
Between the small hands folded in her lap
Surely a shamed head may bow down at length,
  And find forgiveness where the shadows stir
About her lips, and wisdom in her strength,
  Peace in her peace. Come to her, come to her !’ …

She will not care. She’ll smile to see me come,
  So that I think all Heaven in flower to fold me.
  She’ll give me all I ask, kiss me and hold me,
    And open wide upon that holy air
The gates of peace, and take my tiredness home,
    Kinder than God. But, heart, she will not care.

From my law school applications:

Lines Written Upon Reading the Caption Below a Picture of Natalie Portman with Her Hand Down the Back of Her Jeans, which Said Something about Ants in Her Pants

Let us make haste, depart ; she will not dance.
Let us quaff our drinks and leave for France.
She would not pluck the fruit from off the vine,
Nor help our Bacchanal one step advance.
How humourless she is ! like hemlock wine ;
Yea, though we poured a thousand ants into her pants,
   She would not dance.

To atone for the assault on your sensibilities that must have been, I offer also a snippet from a poem by Swinburne called “Félise,” which I was reading on the Metro coming home. It’s a longer piece, quite beautiful in places, but in the latter half he decries the godless world at some length. The stars make an indifferent appearance:

from Félise

Do the stars answer ? in the night
  Have ye found comfort ? or by day
Have ye seen gods ? What hope, what light,
  Falls from the farthest starriest way
  On you that pray?

Are the skies wet because we weep,
  Or fair because of any mirth ?
Cry out ; they are gods ; perchance they sleep ;
  Cry ; thou shalt know what prayers are worth,
  Thou dust and earth.