Merry Christmas!

December 22, 2014

bigstock-Comet-in-the-sky-15028232

Just like the title says, to all readers.

If you press this link, you will find a radical poem by Emily Brontë about her relationship with God, along with some rather bashful commentary at the Tuesday Poem hub.
(I wrote the commentary, and Emily Brontë overawes me a little. I felt as if I was putting one of those idiotic jokes that you find in Christmas crackers below something ineluctably profound.)

Now, like the entire population of Australia (give or take a few hundred thousand more sensible souls) I am off to drink and eat far too much. I don’t do New Year’s resolutions, and neither do I post lists of what I achieved this year, in the manner of the fearsomely scary and boastful letters that some Americans send each other. (‘Clara is graduating from NASA as an astronaut with a sub-major in Klingon, and Peter just bought Harvard to match last year’s Yale.’)

There really is no ‘end of the year’. Time is not a commodity that we control, or which gives any attention to our calendars. But that is no reason not to have fun, and to reflect a little.

I intend to do some reflection in rock pools, and to splash in the surf.

God bless us, every one!

Hope was but a timid friend;
She sat without the grated den,
Watching how my fate would tend,
Even as selfish-hearted men.

She was cruel in her fear;
Through the bars, one dreary day,
I looked out to see her there,
And she turned her face away!

Like a false guard, false watch keeping,
Still, in strife, she whispered peace;
She would sing while I was weeping;
If I listened, she would cease.

False she was, and unrelenting;
When my last joys strewed the ground,
Even Sorrow saw, repenting,
Those sad relics scattered round;

Hope, whose whisper would have given
Balm to all my frenzied pain,
Stretched her wings, and soared to heaven,
Went, and ne’er returned again!
Melencolia_I_(Durero)

There is another poem on the same subject by Emily Dickinson, of course, which mentions wings, but I prefer this one, being a renowned misery guts.

If you would like wingèd hope to plop onto your lap like an obese kakapo, may I suggest you press this feather? You will not fly, or run very fast, but you will find yourself reading many poems from New Zealand. However, a flightless parrot tells me that the very fine Hub Poem is by a member of what our Prime Minister just dubbed ‘Team Australia’. A phrase guaranteed to make any poet puke. If you don’t, please hand your licence back in to the Appropriate Authorities.

The poem at the hub is by a third Emily, by the way: Emily Manger.

Tuesday Poem