News and Additions
(most recent at the top)
February 6th - Additions
A variety of poems hae been added to the collection, putting us over the 800 mark for poets included in the index.
- Twenty-one poems by Nicholas Grimald have been added to the collection, with annotation, as part of Tottel's Miscellany.
- The Plougher by Padraic Colum
- An Old Woman of the Roads by Padraic Colum
January 18th - Additions
Nineteen poems by James Weldon Johnson have been added to the collection:
- The Word of an Engineer
- The White Witch
- I Hear the Stars Still Singing
- The Young Warrior
- Fifty Years
- To America
- O Southland!
- Father, Father Abraham
- Mother Night
- Before a Painting
- The Dancing Girl
- Sunset in the Tropics
- Ghosts of the Old Year
- The Gift to Sing
- Morning, Noon and Night
January 16th - Additions
Nineteen poems by Violet Jacob have been added to the collection:
- At a Brookside
- To Aurelia, with a Pearl Necklace
- The Lowland Ploughman
- The Wild Geese (in Scots)
- Craigo Woods (in Scots)
- The Jacobite Lass (in Scots)
- "The Happy Warrior"
- Fringford Brook
- Back to the Land
- The Kirk Beside the Sands (in Scots)
- Bonnie Joann (in Scots)
- Hallowe'en (in Scots)
- Inverquharity (in Scots)
- The Shadows
January 6th - Additions
Candles That Burn by Aline Kilmer - a book of 49 poems
January 2nd - Additions
Vigils by Aline Kilmer - a book of 30 poems
Sunday, December 13th, 2009 - Additions
Summons by Louis Untermeyer
Prayer by Louis Untermeyer
Sunday, November 29th, 2009 - Additions
Sadness by Confucius
Trysting Time by Confucius
The Soldier by Confucius
Tears by Wang Seng-Ju
Seaside Romance by Don Marquis
April Song by Don Marquis
Tuesday, November 24th, 2009 - Additions
Colors of Life by Max Eastman, a book of 53 poems with an extended essay on American Poetry
Sunday, November 15th, 2009 - Additions
Prelude by Richard Aldington
Images by Richard Aldington
At the British Museum by Richard Aldington
Lochanilaun br Francis Brett Young
Wednesday, November 11th, 2009 - Additions
Lincoln by John Gould Fletcher
The Skaters by John Gould Fletcher
The Chip on the Shoulder by Arthur Guiterman
Pershing at the Front by Arthur Guiterman
Strictly Germ-proof by Arthur Guiterman
The Passionate Suburbanite To His Love by Arthur Guiterman
On the Vanity of Earthly Greatness by Arthur Guiterman
Heritage by Arthur Guiterman
Sunday Evening in the Common by John Hall Wheelock
Sunday, November 8th, 2009 - Additions
So let them pass, these songs of mine by Don Marquis
This is Another Day by Don Marquis
This Earth, It is Also a Star by Don Marquis
A Mood of Pavlova by Don Marquis
The Pool by Don Marquis
Nicholas of Montenegro by Don Marquis
Haunted by Don Marquis
A Nightmare by Don Marquis
The Sailor's Wife Speaks by Don Marquis
October by Don Marquis
Selves by Don Marquis
The Piltdown Skull by Don Marquis
David to Bathsheba by Don Marquis
Early Autumn by Don Marquis
Visitors by Don Marquis
An Open Fire by Don Marquis
realities by Don Marquis
The Rebel by Don Marquis
Frustration by Don Marquis
Vorticism by Don Marquis
The Islands of the Blest by George Sterling
To Ambrose Bierce by George Sterling
The Homing of Drake by George Sterling
A Wine of Wizardry by George Sterling
Aldebaran at Dusk by George Sterling
The Huntress of Stars by George Sterling
Kindred by George Sterling
At the Grand Cañon by George Sterling
Night on the Mountain by George Sterling
On a Western Beach by George Sterling
A Legend of the Dove by George Sterling
Christmas Under Arms by George Sterling
The Aeroplane by George Sterling
The Battlefield at Night by George Sterling
The Gleaner by George Sterling
The "Lusitania" by George Sterling
The Black Vulture by George Sterling
Youth and Time by George Sterling
Wednesday, November 4th, 2009 - Additions
To One A-marrying by Nora May French
Ave Atque Vale by Nora May French
My Maid of Dreams by Nora May French
Change by Nora May French
Between Two Rains by Nora May French
Along the Track by Nora May French
San Francisco New Year's, 1907 by Nora May French
Wistaria by Nora May French
You by Nora May French
Yesterday by Nora May French
Dusk by Nora May French
In Camp by Nora May French
Satuday, October 24th, 2009 - The War Poets
The majority of the War Poets collection has now been converted to Bookshelf format and migrated to the main Poets' Corner storage location to mitigate issues resulting from the demise of Geocities. The most recenly updated collections can be found in the left hand column of the Books page, and include works by Brooke, Seeger, Owen and Others.
Two other projects are in the queue - the migration of the Georgian Poetry Collections, and the transcription of selected works from Tottel's Miscellaney.
By the way, the only fully up-to-date index is the Author Index at this point. Revisions to the Title, Subject, and First Line indicies after all of this file reloaction is a task for a better programmer than I (or one with more time).
Wednesday, September 2nd, 2009 - Additions
Paul to Virginia by Alice Ruth Moore (Alice Dunbar)
In Memoriam by Alice Ruth Moore (Alice Dunbar)
At Bay St. Louis by Alice Ruth Moore (Alice Dunbar)
New Year's Day by Alice Ruth Moore (Alice Dunbar)
Amid the Roses by Alice Ruth Moore (Alice Dunbar)
The Idler by Alice Ruth Moore (Alice Dunbar)
If I Had Known by Alice Ruth Moore (Alice Dunbar)
A Pliant by Alice Ruth Moore (Alice Dunbar)
Monday, August 31st, 2009 - Additions
Content by Robert Greene
The Nightingale by Richard Barnfield
Follow Your Saint by Thomas Campion
Integer Vitae by Thomas Campion
Turn All Thy Thoughts to Eyes by Thomas Campion
An Ode to Himself by Ben Jonson
A Farewell to the World by Ben Jonson
Epitaph on Elizabeth, L.H. by Ben Jonson
On Salathiel Pavy by Ben Jonson
To Lucy Countess of Bedford by Ben Jonson
His Supposed Mistress by Ben Jonson
Sunday, August 30th, 2009 - Additions
This update includes a few more poems - in particular some from Sir Thomas Wyatt - since many of the last batch were from the late Tudor period, we'll continue with this timeframe. Wyatt traveled abroad extensively, including a stay in Italy. Wyatt is credited with adapting the Petrarchian Sonnet form to English, using Italian rhyming patterns as his model.
While he wrote a substantial body of work, Wyatt himself never published. His verses were hand copied and passed around among friends and courtiers in his time. His poems were later issued along with the works of some of his contemporaries as part of Tottel's Miscellany, the first published compendium of English verse. I have recently gone through and updated most of the Wyatt poems now in the collection to match specific versions from known manuscripts with modenized spelling for ease of reading. Manuscript sources are noted for most of the poems.
Wyatt lived in very turbulent times. Two major influences in his life were his uneasy relationship with King Henry VIII, a very dangerous man, and his long friendship and love, perhaps unrequited, for Anne Boleyn - who is probably the subject of many of his poems. Wyatt was stripped of his wealth and property by the King, who also had him thrown in the Tower of London and very nearly beheaded (Anne and many of their contemporaries were not so lucky) and sent away on many missions overseas, possibly to keep him away from court.
Boleyn's affair with the King, followed by her marriage, were painful for Wyatt, as shown in his writings, which express affection, sadness, betrayal, and bitterness. Much of his verse is on the changeable nature of love, though many pieces are very specific. Patience, Though I Have Not is from one of his imprisonments by the King, and the famous Whoso List to Hunt is his sad realization that Anne now belongs to the King, and he must stay away. Finally, Ye Olde Mule is a very bitter piece. Perhaps Wyatt would have had less vitriol if he knew how little time Anne had before she was beheaded as yet another victim of Henry's anger, jealousy and desire for succession.
Ye Olde Mule
Patience, Though I Have Not
Is It Possible
What Should I Say
Wednesday, August 26th, 2009 - Additions
I recently ran across a cache of poems from 2003 that I failed to add to the collection. Not sure what the best poetic form of 'oops' is. I find that when you put things in a special place so that they won't get lost - they always get lost. Here are a few:
- Sonnet by King James, I - Thanks to Nelson Miller
- Elegy to the Memory of an Unfortunate Lady by Alexander Pope - Thanks to Bob Blair
- Green Groweth the Holly by King Henry, VIII - Thanks to Nelson Miller
- Pastime With Good Company by King Henry, VIII - Thanks to Nelson Miller
- Though that men do call it dotage by King Henry, VIII - Thanks to Nelson Miller
- Without Discord by King Henry, VIII - Thanks to Nelson Miller
- Louisa M. Alcott: In Memoriam by Louise Chandler Moulton
- To Papa by Louisa May Alcott
- A Little Grey Curl by Louisa May Alcott
- A. B. A. by Louisa May Alcott
- Importune Me No More by Queen Elizabeth I - thanks to Nelson Miller
- The Doubt of Future Foes by Queen Elizabeth I - thanks to Nelson Miller
- On Monsieur's Departure, 1582 by Queen Elizabeth I - thanks to Nelson Miller
Sunday, August 23rd, 2009 - Yet More Subjects Updated
I'm finding it difficult to keep maintaining update news in multiple places, so the default looks like its going to be the Facebook page much of the time. The content there is fully accessible to people who are not registered on Facebook. It's just easier to navigate if you do sign up (its free, by the way).
In the meantime, the list of completed subjects is progressing well. Eleven down, forty-three to go. Here is the latest update:
Sunday, August 9th, 2009 - More Subjects Updated
Sorry, I've been posting news to Facebook and forgetting to keep this log up to date. Work has continued on the Subject Index. The following topics are now updated to the new standard and significantly expanded:
I've also expaned the commentary for each section, and added a few illustrations, including portraits of some of the poets, some artworks of interest, and a few photos borrowed from the Beautiful Images collections at The Other Pages. Enjoy.
Sunday, April 4th - April is National Poetry Month
April is National Poetry Month in the U.S. and Canada (although Great Britain celebrates it in October) so we will continue to emphasize what is going on in the poetry collection. March 21st is actually the UNESCO World Poetry Day.
The month starts out with significant additions to our collection of poems by Paul Laurence Dunbar. Dunbar is one of those poets whose conciseness and clarity of style often makes poetry seem effortless. As is always the case, it takes great effort to be both succinct and memorable. In his short life (he died from Tuberculosis at age 33) he generated a fairly large body of work covering a wide range of topics.
Dunbar wrote both short and long works whose language is quite readable today. You’ll find him far easier to read and appreciate than many poets of his time. Dunbar wrote books and essays as well as poems, including novels with depth and arguments on political, economic, and racial issues. Dunbar could write biting satire – like Theology for instance,
THERE is a heaven, for ever, day by day,
The upward longing of my soul doth tell me so.
There is a hell, I'm quite as sure; for pray
If there were not, where would my neighbours go?
And he could also write poems that would easily be mistaken for other noted American or European authors – a good example is Sunset, which ends with:
While in the south the first faint star
Lifts to the night its silver face,
And twinkles to the moon afar
Across the heaven's graying space,
Low murmurs reach me from the town,
As Day puts on her sombre crown,
And shakes her mantle darkly down.
He could also write a very smooth song lyric, and many of his songs, both in and out of dialect, are still effective today even without the musical setting. Here is the first stanza from Discovered:
SEEN you down at chu'ch las' night,
Nevah min', Miss Lucy.
What I mean? oh, dat's all right,
Nevah min', Miss Lucy.
You was sma't ez sma't could be,
But you could n't hide from me.
Ain't I got two eyes to see?
Nevah min', Miss Lucy.
Writing in dialect, by the way, is not easy to do – particularly in English, where our options for annotation are limited. In his many works written in dialect, Dunbar captures regional accents, personalities, and emotions as well as anyone.
About 40 new works by Dunbar have been added, mostly in bookshelf editions of Lyrics of Lowly Life (http://theotherpages.org/poems/books/dunbar/dunbar06.html) and Lyrics of the Hearthside (http://theotherpages.org/poems/books/dunbar/dunbar05.html). Dunbar’s works were initially self published, then after some success, published in several ‘overlapping’ volumes. This makes updating the author index a little messy. The dates cited may not always be the earliest publishing dates, but they are the editions from which the Poets’ Corner text was taken.
Changing the Subject (not yet...)
After re-formatting the main author index files, I’ve moved on to the Subject Index, created years ago by Jon Lachelt. Unfortunately, while there are 13 author index files, there are 54 subject indexes. I’ve completed two initial examples, on Life and People. Let me know if you like the changes. Recommendations on additional selections are appreciated.
Running the Tables
In case any of you are NOT watching the NCAA and NIT basketball tournaments or out enjoying the start of spring in the northern hemisphere, you may have noticed that stage one of the collection's major overhaul is complete - all of the main author index files have been converted to a single, consistent format. I hope everyone likes green.
There are several parallel efforts, including link-backs from Wikipedia and some added Faces of the Poets added to the indexes. I have also added new works from Joseph Addison, Lascelles Abercrombie and William Blake. Blake's index entry has also been re-done. Several new poets (new to the collection, at least) were also added. These include Scottish doctor John Armstrong, and Scottish songwriter John Skinner and English War poet Edmund Blunden. This is a good mix of styles and longer and shorter works.
The added songs by Blake cover a wide range in tones, and Fair Eleanor is a suprisingly graphic horror story. Armstrong's Epistle to a Young Critic is a bit thick with its references to recognized classics as well as to his contemporaries, but has some good quotable lines, and some searing criticisms. Skinner's Reel of Tullochgorum was a favorite of his friend Robert Burns (they corresponded in verse) and is played by musicians to the present day.
Blunden is a little reminiscent of Muriel Stuart in his themes, particularly in his poem Forefathers
These were men of pith and thew,
Whom the city never called;
Scarce could read or hold a quill,
Built the barn, the forge, the mill.
On the green they watched their sons
Playing till too dark to see,
As their fathers watched them once,
As my father once watched me;
Men from whom my ways begin,
Here I know you by your ground
But I know you not within--
All is mist, and there survives
Not a moment of your lives.
Like the bee that now is blown
Honey-heavy on my hand,
From the toppling tansy-throne
In the green tempestuous land,--
I'm in clover now, nor know
Who made honey long ago.
and Reunion in Wartime, which ends with:
The church clock with his dead voice whirred
As if he bade me stay
To trace with madman's fingers all
The letters on the stones
Where thick beneath the twitch roots crawl
In dead men's envied bones.
Wednesday, March 4th, 2008 - Higher than the Dow right Now
In case you haven't noticed, the 'poem tally' has been creeping upwards toward 7,000. New poems have been added by Sarah Orne Jewett, Henry Van Dyke, Jean Ingelow, and Robert Ernest Vernède, among others. There are also some major experiments with the main Author indicies. Take a look at I-J, U-V, and Y-Z for a taste of what's in store. I'm also adding in some new portraits and making a note of pointers from Wikipedia to specific poets.
For a sample from the new additions, try one of Van Dyke's Inscriptions, or Ingelow's Loss and Waste.
Friday, February 27th, 2009 - Rats and The Wall
While browsing through the 1920 edition of the "Granite Monthly", I ran across some poems by Albert Annett, a historian and sometimes poet. One of them, Anarchism (http://theotherpages.org/poems/part2/annett01.html) struck me as dramatic, pointed, and undeniably relevant, nearly 90 years later.
In particular, the last four lines seemed to sum up the current worldwide financial crisis and all of its collateral damage more succinctly than anything I've seen in today's mass media or among all the ranting talking heads of our day:
Where happiness had dwelt, were devastation, woe and death,
And these few words were written of the fall:
While watchman slept
Rats undermined the wall.
Annett's metaphor is a simple and powerful, and could apply to several different worries of our day or of his. Annett wrote in a post-war era where physical acts of anarchism (terrorism in today's lexicon) were widely reported in the papers, and where the rich and powerful of Europe and America looked on the recent Russian Revolution with fear and apprehension. I haven't read enough by Annett to know his 'politics' well enough to infer which 'flood' Annett intended as the primary target for his metaphor. There were waves of immigration, of socialist and communist politics, loosening of moral stigmas as the U.S. moved from the war era into the 'Roaring 20's", and of course the same kinds of corruption and profiteering that come to light in every era.
Who knows? Annett may have simply been a baeball fan upset about the 'Black Sox' scandal.
Regardless of Annett's target, the poem is still highly charged and highly effective in our day. Feel free to forward this to the local bank regulator, sports commissioner, or government watchdog agency of your choice.....
Sunday, February 22nd, 2009 - Harold Vinal
I didn't know much about Harold Vinal, though looking through our collection and looking through the Web it seems as if he did quite a bit. He was a publisher, editing and publishing many books of poetry, and edited Voices: A Magazine of Verse for over 40 years. I was surprised to find how many authors I know (and books I own) were published by Harold Vinal.
As a publisher (and a poet), Vinal was somewhat of a traditionalist. Most of the mentions you see of him online comment on an incident with e.e. cummings. After receiving a rejection from Vinal, cummings retaliated by including a poem in his book No.5, titled "Poem, or Beauty hurts Mr. Vinal", suggesting Vinal's judgement was fit only for editing the advertising jingles that were becoming omnipresent on the radio at the time.
Vinal does not seem to have embraced many 'Modern' trends in poetry that were becoming common in the time period. His own poems tended towards conventional subjects and simple forms and rhyme schemes. I've found Vinal's poems appearing in regional journals around 1920 and noted that he published his first book of poetry, White April, (http://theotherpages.org/poems/books/vinal/vinal01.html) in 1922.
In short, Vinal was no cummings. However, like many poetry magazine editors of his period, Vindal did help give voice to many aspiring writers - including Langston Hughes, who Vinal also tapped to edit an anthology of African-American verse. He served as secretary and later president of the Poetry Society of America, and was anthologized inseveral collections.
Vinal's poems are readable enough, but generally not outstanding. I added them to Poet's Corner mainly to recognize how difficult it is sometimes for an editor to be himself good at creating the art form he helps shape. Hopefully that's not too esoteric a point. This adds 43 works that are new to the collection. Among them are quite a few sonnets and shorter works, including Persephone, for which I chose Rossetti's exquisite painting for the book cover. It is Rossetti, a poet as well as a painter, whose self-portrait appears at the top of this page.
Thursday, February 19th, 2009 - The Words to Vivaldi's Seasonal Music
One of the comments my friend and co-editor Bob Blair often used to make in his editorials years ago was that certain poets who were widely published and read, and veritable celebities in their day, often faded into obscurity. Being stylish, someone also once said, simply means that you are more likely to go out of style. This has been true among authors and artists, musicians and playwrights, political (and economic) theorists, and, of course, poets. I was listening to Alex Trebek quizzing his daily panel of Jeopardy contestants the other day, when he gave a clue about a baroque composer whose 'seasonal' music was published with a set of accompanying poems written by the composer. Vivaldi was an easy guess (The Four Seasons - Le Quattro Stagioni) for the musician, but I didn't know about the poems - so of course I had to look them up.
A Venetian, Antonio Vivaldi was a priest, composer, and a virtuoso on violin. He seems to have been an exceptionally prolific composer, with 46 operas, over 500 concertos, 73 sonatas and a variety of sacred music. In the early part of the 18th century his works were very well known, and much anticipated. The Four Seasons, written around 1723 and published as the first four violin sonatas from "The Contest Between Harmony and Invention" (1925). His career included performances before the Pope and for the royalty of continental Europe, who also commissioned him to compose a variety of special compositions.
With all of those operas under his belt, Vivaldi must have written more lyrics than you can shake a stick at (feel free to insert your own favorite equivalent euphemism here), but I can only find reference to one set of poems - the sonatas that describe, movement by movement, what scenes his violins are immitating in The Four Seasons. The suprising thing to me, is that, for as well known as Vivaldi has been for the last half century, and as well known and influential as he was in his own day, he was largely unknown for much of the intervening two centuries.
Sorry, the English tramnslations are literal, and a little stilted. I'll ask Nick to work on them if he gets tired of Chinese and wants to go back to Italian for a while.
Monday, February 16th, 2009 - Updated Conversations
One of the long term goals I have, in addition to adding new works, is going back and updating many of the older files in the collection. Some of these go back to the 1994-1995 timeframe. Others are from the years on Geocities, and still others are in complex formats that seemed to make sense at the time, but are hard to maintain. A couple of recent updates are books of poems by Clough and Yeats that have been converted to Bookshelf II format. Both have conversational patterns - spoken in the case of some of Yeats pieces, namely Michael Robartes and the Dancer and An Image from a past Life. Clough's Amours de Voyage is a set of conversations in the form of written letters. Both poets are quite readable, though Amours is a significantly longer work. The format though, of Claude's letters, chops things up into interesting, voyeuristic chunks that move along fairly easily. The best known work among these two books is Yeats' apocalyptic The Second Coming, which has been highly anthologized, though A Prayer for My Daughter is also poignant. I was pleased to run across Sargeant's charcoal of a youthful Yeats. It makes a good cover image.
Wednesday, February 11th, 2009 - Poems of The Brontë Sisters
Anne, Emily, and Charlotte Brontë wrote novels and poetry in the middle of the 19th century. While their novels Agnes Grey, Wuthering Heights, and Jane Eyre are well known, and met with significant publishing success, their poetry is less well known, as are the tragic deaths due to illness of Anne, Emily and their brother Branwell in less than a year's time. The initial volume of poetry was self-published in 1846 under pseudonyms with little success. After the deaths of her siblings in 1848-1849, Charlotte had the book re-published in 1850, with additional poems by Anne and Emily. Despite the fact that their books had made the sisters well known, the pseudonyms were retained. Poems, by Currer, Ellis, and Acton Bell has been added in its entirety, including Charlotte's comments about her sisters and their works. Ann was the most successful in her brief career as a published poet, though I have a preference for some of Emily's works. Choose for yourself.
This edition is based on gally from PG, re-structured into Poets' Corner's Bookshelf II format. The actual poets' names are used in place of the pseudonyms to minimize confusion for modern readers. Italicization should be correct - it is missing from the Wikipedia edition. This version also facilitates browsing, I think, moreso than the other avaialble formats. Nearly 80 of these poems are new to the PC collection.
Thursday, December 4th, 2008 - Stuart, Centaurs, and Heliodore
I’ve just updated the index entry for Muriel
Stuart, and added her book Cockpit
of Idols. Fourteen of the poems are new to the collection. Stuart
writes in a variety of forms, on subjects starting with the Great
War, then moving on to "sexual politics", and religious and other
themes before ending up with a sort of ubi sunt poem for
Heliodore. The title poem has several parallels to Christ
at Carnival, though the roles are reversed and the main
character battles through fatalistic arrogance rather than reveling
wanderlust. (The Centaur is a bit more rollicking than our usual
content, by the way) This is a heavily edited text based on a very
buggy source file from UCLA. Thanks to Ariadne for finding it.
Friday, November 28th, 2008 - Senlin, Bread and Roses
I’ve just completed updating all of the files in the Conrad Aiken collection. These include Senlin, Discordants, Light and Snow, Turns and Movies, and Chiarascuro: Rose, among others. Aiken wrote in a variety of forms, and wrote beautifully crafted rhymed as well as blank verse.
Wednesday, November 19th, 2008 - The Princess Returns
Alfred Tennyson's The Princess has been re-done in Bookshelf II format, and most of the illustrations from the 1884 edition have been added in. The illustrations are clickable, to view larger format versions. Tennyson sub-titled this 'A Medley' - the story is told spontaneously in seven parts by seven different speakers, mostly college friends returned home and picnicking together on a weekend. Most of the poem is in blank verse, with well known songs at the ends of several of the sections.
Sunday, November 16th, 2008 - More Morley
The online version of Christopher Morley's CHIMNEYSMOKE has been expanded with nine additional poems, updated, and converted to the new Bookshelf II format. I have also added back in some of the illustrations by Thomas Fogarty that somehow were lost. Click on any illustration to see a larger image.