There should be no despair for you
While nightly stars are burning;
While evening pours its silent dew,
And sunshine gilds the morning.
There should be no despair--though tears
May flow down like a river:
Are not the best beloved of years
Around your heart for ever?

They weep, you weep, it must be so;
Winds sigh as you are sighing,
And winter sheds its grief in snow
Where Autumn's leaves are lying:
Yet, these revive, and from their fate
Your fate cannot be parted:
Then journey on, if not elate,
Still, NEVER broken-hearted!

- Emily Bronte (1818-1848)

In a Wood on a Windy Day

My soul is awakened, my spirit is soaring
And carried aloft on the wings of the breeze;
For above and around me the wild wind is roaring,
Arousing to rapture the earth and the seas.

The long withered grass in the sunshine is glancing,
The bare trees are tossing their branches on high;
The dead leaves beneath them are merrily dancing,
The white clouds are scudding across the blue sky

I wish I could see how the ocean is lashing
The foam of its billows to whirlwinds of spray;
I wish I could see how its proud waves are dashing,
And hear the wild roar of their thunder to-day!

- Anne Bronte (1820-1849)

New Heart

Like a snake, my heart
has shed its skin.
I hold it there in my hand,
full of honey and wounds.

The thoughts that nested
in your folds, where are they now?
Where the roses that perfumed
both Jesus Christ and Satan

Poor wrapper that damped
my fantastical star,
parchment gray and mournful
of what I loved once but love no more!

I see fetal sciences in you,
mummified poems and bones
of my romantic secrets
and old innocence.

Shall I hang you on the wall
of my emotional museum,
beside my dark, chill,
sleeping irises of my evil?

Or shall I spread you over the pines
-- suffering book of my love --
so you can learn about the song
the nightingale offers the dawn?

- Federico Garcia Lorca (1898-1936)


Life, believe, is not a dream
So dark as sages say;
Oft a little morning rain
Foretells a pleasant day.
Sometimes there are clouds of gloom,
But these are transient all;
If the shower will make the roses bloom,
O why lament its fall?
Rapidly, merrily,
Life's sunny hours flit by,
Gratefully, cheerily
Enjoy them as they fly!
What though Death at times steps in,
And calls our best away?
What though sorrow seems to win,
O'er hope, a heavy sway?
Yet Hope again elastic springs,
Unconquered, though she fell;
Still buoyant are her golden wings,
Still strong to bear us well.
Manfully, fearlessly,
The day of trail bear,
For gloriously, victoriously,
Can courage quell despair!

- Charlotte Bronte (1816-1855)

A Reminiscence

Yes, thou art gone! and never more
Thy sunny smile shall gladden me;
But I may pass the old church door,
And pace the floor that covers thee,

May stand upon the cold, damp stone,
And think that, frozen, lies below
The lightest heart that I have known,
The kindest I shall ever know.

Yet, through I cannot see thee more,
'Tis still a comfort to have seen;
And though thy transient life is o'er,
'Tis sweet to think that thou hast been;

To think a soul so near divine,
Within a form so angel fair,
United to a heart like thine,
Has gladdened once our humble sphere.

- Anne Bronte (1820-1849)

Love and Friendship

Love is like the wild rose-briar;
Friendship like the holly-tree.
The holly is dark when the rose-briar blooms,
But which will bloom most constantly?

The wild rose-briar is sweet in spring,
Its summer blossoms scent the air;
Yet wait till winter comes again,
And who will call the wild-briar fair?

Then, scorn the silly rose-wreath now,
And deck thee with the holly's sheen,
That, when December blights thy brow,
He still may leave thy garland green.

- Emily Bronte (1818-1848)

An Asphodel

O dear sweet rosy
unattainable desire
... how sad, no way
to change the mad
cultivated asphodel, the
visible reality...

and skin's appalling
petals--how inspired
to be so lying in the living
room drunk naked
and dreaming, in the absence
of electricity...
over and over eating the low root
of the asphodel,
gray fate...

rolling in generation
on the flowery couch
as on a bank in Arden--
my only rose tonite's the treat
of my own nudity.

- Allen Ginsburg (1926-1997)

The End

celluloid souls witness real life in
the audience-emotions roll out-as
lovers kiss and children grin and
tender cry-all that jazz
of this melodious cinema for the
eyes-but the bona fide story is
on the other side where flesh and
bone confide in strife-transient
not timeless, genuine not ingénue,
in the seats resides life’s truth
breathing, perpetually bleeding-
with briefly beating hearts in
reach of the never-ending-we all
play our parts in the cinematic
of sentience- from the opening
scene until our fifteen minute
feature in the infinite theater
convenes-where the credits lend
closure with the classic exposure-
the end.

- Jessie Wilkie

A Poison Tree

I was angry with my friend:
I told my wrath, my wrath did end.
I was angry with my foe:
I told it not, my wrath did grow.

And I watered it in fears
Night and morning with my tears,
And I sunned it with smiles
And with soft deceitful wiles.

And it grew both day and night,
Till it bore an apple bright,
And my foe beheld it shine,
And he knew that it was mine -

And into my garden stole
When the night had veiled the pole;
In the morning, glad, I see
My foe outstretched beneath the tree.

- William Blake (1757-1827)

Out of the Depths I Called to Thee

My only Love, be merciful to me!
This is the gulf of blood, where my heart lies -
This stupefying space, these livid skies,
This welter of disgust and blasphemy.

Dead sun hung overhead for half the year,
Then arctic night and six-month-long relapse,
A place more barren than the polar caps -
No bird, no beast, no grass, no atmosphere.

No evils on this earth now could surpass
The frigid sun that broods on my crevasse,
Enormous night and Chaos over all.

I'm envious of every animal
That hibernates and never needs a mind,
So slowly does the skein of time unwind!

- Charles Baudelaire (1821-1867)

the Old Man at the Cottage Door

Come, faint old man! and sit awhile
Beside our cottage door;
A cup of water from the spring,
A loaf to bless the poor,
We give with cheerful hearts, for God
Hath given us of his store.

Too feeble, thou, for daily toil,
Too weak to earn thy bread--
For th’ weight of many, many years,
Lies heavy on thy head--
A wanderer, want, thy weary feet,
Hath to our cottage led.

Come rest awhile. ‘Twill not be long,
Ere thy faint head shall know
A deeper, calmer, better rest,
Than cometh here below;
When He, who loveth every one,
Shall call thee hence to go.

God bless thee in thy wanderings!
Wherever they may be,
And make the ears of every one
Attentive to thy plea;
A double blessing will be theirs,
Who kindly turn to thee.

- T.S. Arthur (1809-1885)

She Breathes Inside My Mind

She breathes inside my mind
Echoing, echoing thoughts of mine
Whether by chance, or whether divine
These museful whispers echo through time
Tender hearted nymph, from valleys and cave
She echoes, she echoes, but never the same
Thought or desire that swirls in my cage
This invisible force enters, lingers, then leaves again

- Christophe Parker

the Giantess

When Mother Nature filled the early world
With mammoth creatures suckled at her teat
I could have lived near some gigantic girl,
Like a little cat, sprawled at a queen's feet,

And watched her body ripen and grow wise,
Her soul grow strong in terrifying games,
Or from the smoke clouds darkening her eyes,
Guessed when her heart was going up in flames;

Wandering through her wilderness at ease,
I could have conquered those enormous knees,
And some hot summer when she lay at rest

Stretched out across the fertile earth, I'd put
My head down in the shadow of her breast--
A sleepy hamlet at the mountain's foot.

- Charles-Pierre Baudelaire (1821-1867)

A Jet Ring Sent

THOU art not so black as my heart,
Nor half so brittle as her heart, thou art;
What would'st thou say? shall both our properties by thee be spoke,
--Nothing more endless, nothing sooner broke?

Marriage rings are not of this stuff;
Oh, why should ought less precious, or less tough
Figure our loves? except in thy name thou have bid it say,
“--I’m cheap, and nought but fashion; fling me away.”

Yet stay with me since thou art come,
Circle this finger’s top, which didst her thumb;
Be justly proud, and gladly safe, that thou dost dwell with me;
She that, O! broke her faith, would soon break thee.

- John Donne (1572-1631)

Why Log Truck Drivers Rise Earlier Than Students of Zen

In the high seat, before-dawn dark,
Polished hubs gleam
And the shiny diesel stack
Warms and flutters
Up the Tyler Road grade
To the logging on Poorman creek.
Thirty miles of dust.

There is no other life.

- Gary Snyder (1930-)

The Uses of Light

It warms my bones
_ _ _ _ say the stones

I take it into me and grow
Say the trees
Leaves above
Roots below

A vast vague white
Draws me out of the night
Says the moth in his flight-

Some things I smell
Some things I hear
And I see things move
Says the deer-

A high tower
on a wide plain.
If you climb up
One floor
You'll see a thousand miles more.

- Gary Snyder (1930-)


A dark unfathom'd tide
Of interminable pride--
A mystery, and a dream,
Should my early life seem;
I say that dream was fraught
With a wild, and waking thought
Of beings that have been,
Which my spirit hath not seen,
Had I let them pass me by,
With a dreaming eye!
Let none of earth inherit
That vision on my spirit;
Those thoughts I would control
As a spell upon his soul:
For that bright hope at last
And that light time have past,
And my worldly rest hath gone
With a sigh as it pass'd on
I care not tho' it perish
With a thought I then did cherish.

- Edgar Allen Poe (1809-1849)

Hesitant Dreams

brittle hearts
are what make our lives unfold
quickly, quickly we run our parts
daily grind races day by day
trying always to fit into the mold
lovely lines
with lovely meaning
poems for our hum-drum lives
like drops of diamonds in black rock
slowly, slowly we let our dreams rise up
and if they shatter our little smarts
we will be left with only
brittle hearts

Such a fine line.
Will those words ever cross the page?
With the question,
Stand the ever test of age?
A light bulb and a bright idea,
A Cybil and a tortured thought.

Such a fine line.
Between the folds of
Yours and my perplexed mind.

Such a fine line.
Do you ask to pass?
Do you have the strength,
To resist the eternal sass?
A taunting glare and a tempting offer,
A brief affair and a flirting stopper.

- Bryanna Alcantara

You and I

You are a warm front
that moved in from the north,
a blind spot bearing beautiful gifts,
a garden in the air, a golden filament
inscribe with the name of God's hunting dog,
a magic heirloom mistaken for a feather duster,
a fountain in a cow pasture, an anachronistic anagram
annoyed by anonymity, a dollar in the pocket
of winter coat in the summer.

And I am the discoverer of you.

- Johnathan Potter