“ A Joy ” ~ imagined ~

 

A joy extant infers

Fate so attains,

I try imagining

A glee the same,

In my encounters

That seem contain

But stuff of dreams,

Less than likely

Be imaged silken,

Rather than lined

In matters coarse,

Though often times

Joy masquerades

To emulate a bed of roses,

While attesting life to joyless

Despondency imposes…

 

Yet be this joy

An illusion’s dope,

Renders green with envy

Wants live in hope,

Thirsting after dreams

Known to be flighty,

For people lost, alas

Of spirit rather distant,

Sadly but to fantasize

In musings soon deserted,

For life seeking a shape

That incites to discover

A joy that wouldst survive…

 

So condemn me now to live

The joy I should imagine,

Nothing less than sincere

And ever full of life

With a non invented beauty,

In the joy of a love held verily!

                                                               for my friend Paulette  

                                                                  translation of my OFV, La Joie ~ imaginée ~

“ La Joie ” ~ imaginée ~

 

La joie réelle

Atteinte,

Je n’en croyais

L’expérience,

De mon vécu

Il me semblait,

N’était qu’un rêve

Plus qu’imparfait,

Perçu toutefois

Comme de la soie,

Quoique doublé

D’une vie ridée,

Même si parfois

Brodé de roses,

Semblait une joie

Sans cause…

 

Et pour cette joie,

Affaire imaginaire

J’en ai bavé

Assoiffé d’espoir,

D’y vivre un rêve,

Très peu sérieux

D’un monde perdu, enfin

Dans des esprits lointains,

Bref une tristesse            

Qui parle de rêves déserts,                              

D’une vie non façonnée

Qu’incite à découvrir

Une joie faussée…

 

Condamnez-moi à vivre

La joie imaginée

Néanmoins sincère,

Plutôt remplie de vie

Et de beauté non inventée,

La joie d’un amour éprouvé!

 

              Un souvenir d’un jeune homme en recherche.        

                                The memory of a younger man searching.

 

“ I Am The Crow ” ~ in a grave dark world ~

 

I am the crow

In a grave

Dark world,

A soul in plight

Black as night,

Forced to soar

In a dying light,

On weary wings

And failing sight,

Yet made suffer

Endless flights,

Looking for path

To freedom I seek,

While agony looms

In this wasting meek,

Who’ll suffer hell

Or fly with the devil

For a ray of light,

That shows the way

To end this journey 

In the dead of night!

 

 

“ He Is As One ” ~ with he who lives inside ~

 

He is as one

With he whom resides

Abidingly inside,

Who lived within

When body draped

With youthful skin,

Yet he who be therein

Albeit much the same,

Not so the he we see

Worn more than thin,

With cragged façade

Those years did carve,

Upon a now worn lad

The while resides as one,

With he who lives inside!

 

                                                       ode to they who have arrived

 

Ian on Sunday – The extraordinary claims of poetry – by Ian McDonald

Intermittently through the year, and especially during memorable times up the immense and soul-redeeming Essequibo, I like to read Shelley – as we all should do from time to time since he is pre-eminently the poet of hope. “Let us believe in a kind of optimism in which we are our own gods,” he wrote, “because Hope is a solemn duty which we owe alike to ourselves and the world.”

Shelley had a Promethean vision which seemed to his age, as it must certainly seem to ours, wholly unattainable – a vision of men and women “Equal, unclassed, tribeless and nationless.” But we cannot and should not live without ideals, however unreachable they may seem. Shelley’s poetry argued always against the despair which in his age, as again in ours, seems to follow every hopeful upheaval, each successive glimpse of the vanishing form of liberty and the brotherhood of man.

Think of the despair that so quickly followed in the wake of the great burst of optimistic expectations of a new world dispensation arising out of the break-up of the communist empire and the end of the Cold War. Think how the promise of the Arab Spring has so quickly disappeared. Shelley would have spoken eloquently against such quick disillusion. He would have counselled us to keep the faith. In the same news programme that tells us of the latest horrors out of Afghanistan, Iraq, Somalia, or Syria or a score of other places we hear described the shining lives of the men and women who strive to bring help to such countries and so we hold on still to the slim hope that all may yet be well.

Almost more than anything I love Shelley because, in this most unpoetic age, I draw again from him the belief that poetry can be a transforming agent in people’s lives: “The most unfailing herald, companion or follower of the awakening of a great people to work a beneficial change in opinion or institution, is Poetry.”

This remarkable claim for poetry, for the power of the imagination to bring about social change – and in his Defence of Poetry he also wrote “Poets are the unacknowledged legislators of the world” – explains Shelley’s appeal to readers as different as Baudelaire, Karl Marx, Yeats, Shaw, Gandhi and John Kennedy.

Shelley saw himself as taking part in a great movement of thought set in train by the French Revolution and the unprecedented hopes it generated. He believed that the poet – the prophet who sees into the hidden currents of his time far more acutely than his fellows – has a special obligation “to make the best of it,” to argue against despondency and disillusion and despair. This is the element in Shelley which must speak to us as man’s hatred of man reasserts itself with unbelievable ferocity, as civil carnage mounts across the world, as religious conflict spills blood in country after country, as gross inequality reestablishes itself in the privileged but miserable West, as war looms in the Middle East and avenging terror seems to spread everywhere.

In our own land, where hope has been shredded so often, where daily we are filled with revulsion at brutal public crimes and unspeakable acts of mindless domestic ferocity, let the force and relevance of poetry never be forgotten. Once I was reading Shelley while in “beloved Essequibo where my soul will go/if hereafter good things happen” – the poet’s great ‘Ode to the West Wind’ especially filling me with wonder all over again as it used to do in my young days – I came across some lines which struck me forcefully. They are from ‘Prometheus Unbound’ and they tell us to resolve never to lose heart:

To suffer woes which Hope thinks infinite;

To forgive wrongs darker than death or nights;

To defy Power, which seems omnipotent;

To love, and bear; to Hope till Hope creates

From its own wreck the thing it contemplates;

Neither to change, nor falter, nor repent

This, like thy glory, Titan, is to be

Good, great and joyous, beautiful and free;

This alone is Life, Joy, Empire and Victory.

Thus over the centuries do the words of poets return again and again to define our deepest needs and inspire mankind to endure against all odds. Amidst the chatter of bureaucrats and businessmen, academics and politicians, it is the voice of the poet, as he delves into the heart of things, which never ceases to give us hope.

“ Belligerents ” ~ upstart to old fart ~

 

They transform,

From newborn

To unformed,

Pending attain

The far reaches

Of misinformed,

As egotistic upstarts

Soon reflect as norm,

So till transmogrified

To realm of old farts,

In a state deformed

Beyond any reform,

Ne’er falling short

Of such belligerence,

Becomes an adroit art

For carping such retort,

Much like a toxic dart!