Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Poetry 2 for a stormy day

Double posting from my other blog, but I figured since I double posted the poetry before, I'd do it again....

Buck pointed out Whitman in my last post about poetry, and really, how could I leave out Whitman, the great and mostly likely gay king of American ecstasy? Fred Hersch has a great piece/song cycle based on Leaves of Grass, and this particular section I now can't hear except to music (at least the bloded parts that he set to music)--

I am he that walks with the tender and growing night,
I call to the earth and sea half-held by the night.

Press close bare-bosom'd night--press close magnetic nourishing night!
Night of south winds--night of the large few stars!
Still nodding night--mad naked summer night.
Smile O voluptuous cool-breath'd earth!
Earth of the slumbering and liquid trees!
Earth of departed sunset--earth of the mountains misty-topt!
Earth of the vitreous pour of the full moon just tinged with blue!
Earth of shine and dark mottling the tide of the river!
Earth of the limpid gray of clouds brighter and clearer for my sake!
Far-swooping elbow'd earth--rich apple-blossom'd earth!
Smile, for your lover comes.
Prodigal, you have given me love--therefore I to you give love!
O unspeakable passionate love.

Honestly. Far-swooping elbow's earth--rich apple-blossom'd earth? How frigging astounding is that turn of phrase? So, so rich. Wow.

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