|Sara Teasdale 1884-1933|
This post goes out to my sweet friend of many years, Laura Kvasnosky, who recently gave me a slim volume of poetry by Sara Teasdale, published in 1926, and titled Dark of the Moon. Here is my favorite poem from it:
On the Sussex Downs
Over the downs there were birds flying,
Far off glittered the sea,
And toward the north the weald of Sussex
Lay like a kingdom under me.
I was happier than the larks
That nest on the downs and sing to the sky,
Over the downs the birds flying
Were not so happy as I.
It was not you, though you were near,
Though you were good to hear and see,
It was not the earth, it was not heaven,
It was myself that sang in me.
I've always thought memorizing poems was a fine thing to do, and I recommend this one for memorization. It seems to me as golden as any prayer to say each night as you fall asleep or each morning as you get up.===========================
The Poetry Friday Round-up is being hosted this week by Donna over at Mainely Write. Head over there to see what other people have posted.
I love the last stanza of this poem. It would be perfect to memorize and say each night, and maybe each morning too. Have you read Tom Newkirk's book, THE ART OF SLOW READING? He has a chapter about memorizing that I think you would enjoy.ReplyDelete
I'm going to get my hands on that book fast, Carol. Thanks for the heads-up.Delete
So lovely! With so many of my favorite things in it, it *is* a good piece for me to memorize!ReplyDelete
I wish there were a lot more memorizing going on, Keri (though I have to admit to not being as good at it as I used to be....)Delete
The Sara Teasdale poem *I* recommend for memorization is "Barter." Having those words in my heart and mind keep me grounded and thankful for the moment at hand.ReplyDelete
Yes, "Barter" is a Teasdale favorite, too (and Laura's favorite, I think.)Delete
OMG, I have never memorized more than a haiku or two. There's got to be some hint you guys can give me?ReplyDelete
I don't memorize as well as I used to, Diane. For some reason, Frost's work has been the easiest to remember - his poem "Putting in the Seed" is a favorite of mine and I managed to memorize it without too much trouble a few years ago, but now I'm basically reduced to four lines of Ogden Nash before I break out in a sweat.Delete
I've always thought about memorizing Frost's "Dust of Snow." It's short and absolutely perfect to my mind. Plus, I have a thing for crows!Delete
Julie, it was because of you quoting BARTER that i thought this book belonged on your shelf. So I'm including it here.ReplyDelete
By Sara Teasdale
Life has loveliness to sell,
All beautiful and splendid things,
Blue waves whitened on a cliff,
Soaring fire that sways and sings,
And children's faces looking up
Holding wonder like a cup.
Life has loveliness to sell,
Music like a curve of gold,
Scent of pine trees in the rain,
Eyes that love you, arms that hold,
And for your spirit's still delight,
Holy thoughts that star the night.
Spend all you have for loveliness,
Buy it and never count the cost;
For one white singing hour of peace
Count many a year of strife well lost,
And for a breath of ecstasy
Give all you have been, or could be.
Thank you for posting it, Laura - it's so sweet and positive, isn't it? It makes me ashamed of how cynical I've become - do you think saying this one daily might cure me of that attitude?Delete
Oh my. Do I love this poem, top to bottom and in-between. "Eyes that love you, arms that hold,/And for your spirit's still delight,/Holy thoughts that star the night."Delete
And that last stanza - it makes me gasp with wonder.
It would be the right time for me to memorize this gorgeous poem, too, Julie - the last few years have definitely brought out the "jaded" in me. Thanks for sharing here, Laura!Delete
Such beauty here, Julie, and in the comments, too. I have a few poems memorized, and the rhythm helps doesn't it? But this coming round to what is important, her feelings, is what I enjoyed so much in "On The Sussex Downs"-lovely. Thank you!ReplyDelete
"It was myself that sang in me." *swoon*ReplyDelete
That is a beautiful poem. Love its ending!ReplyDelete
Oh, that last line! To quote Kwame Alexander, "Yes! Yes! Yes!" You're so right about this being a great poem to memorize and recite to yourself at bedtime. The perfect positive affirmation. Thanks for sharing, Julie.ReplyDelete
What a sweet poem. It makes me want to get outside into the wild spaces this weekend.ReplyDelete
"Far off glittered the sea" - but this whole poem shines. Thank you for gifting it to us this week, Julie!ReplyDelete
Teasdale's words say it all, sigh. Thanks for sharing this sweet poem, Julie. =)ReplyDelete
I'm so glad everyone likes this as much as I do. "Sweet" is the word for Teasdale, and I guess I can make room for some sweetness in my cynical old heart!ReplyDelete
This is so lovely, as is "Barter." I think I'll work on memorizing both of them this week. Thanks so much for sharing!ReplyDelete