“GETTING YOUR RHYTHM RIGHT”

True ease in writing comes from art, not chance, As those move easiest who have learned to dance, ‘Tis not enough no harshness gives offence, The sound must seem an echo of the sense; Soft is the strain when Zephyr gently blows, And the smooth stream in smoother numbers flows; But when loud surges lashContinue reading ““GETTING YOUR RHYTHM RIGHT””

“APRIL IS THE CRUELEST MONTH”: TWO POETS, TWO MEN, TWO AGES

April is the cruelest month, breeding Lilacs out of dead land, mixing Memory and desire, stirring Dull roots with spring rain, Winter kept us warm, covering Earth in forgetful snow, feeding A little life with dried tubers. Summer surprised us, coming over the Starnbargersee With a shower of rain; we stopped in the colonnade, AndContinue reading ““APRIL IS THE CRUELEST MONTH”: TWO POETS, TWO MEN, TWO AGES”

RIME OF THE ANCIENT MARINER: PART 5. COLERIDGE’S MYTHOLOGY.

O sleep ! it is a gentle thing. Beloved from pole to pole! To Mary Queen the praise be given! She sent the gentle sleep from Heaven That slid into my soul. The silly buckets on the deck, That had so long remained, I dreamt that they were filled with dew; And when I awoke,Continue reading “RIME OF THE ANCIENT MARINER: PART 5. COLERIDGE’S MYTHOLOGY.”

“NOW THE GREEN BLADE RISETH”

Verily, verily, I say unto you, except a grain of wheat fall into the earth and die, it abideth alone: but if it die it bringeth forth much fruit. St John 12. 24. Now the green blade riseth from the buried grain, Wheat that in dark earth many days has lain; Love lives again, thatContinue reading ““NOW THE GREEN BLADE RISETH””

EASTER POEMS

The Crucifixion “String him up,” some repoman shouted, (repossessor) He’s a weirdo” “In the bin, in the bin”, Yelled another and grabbed some thorns, Sharp as needles, twisting them round A fresh-cut-thorn branch. He made A wreath and forced it down on his head, The pain piercing his flesh. “Morning vicar”, This comedian said andContinue reading “EASTER POEMS”

FOR PALM SUNDAY : THE DONKEY

The Donkey When fishes flew and forests walked And figs grew upon thorns, Some moment when the moon was blood Then surely I was born. With monstrous head and sickening cry And ears like errant wings, The devil’s walking parody On all four-footed things. The tattered outlaw of the earth Of ancient crooked will, Starve,Continue reading “FOR PALM SUNDAY : THE DONKEY”

THE LANGUAGE OF THE SUN AND MOON : DRAWING ON BOEHME.

You may have noticed in our readings of “The Rime of the Ancient Mariner” how the sun and moon are significant presences in the poem. Coleridge thought deeply on the subject of symbols and symbolic language. He saw Nature as reflecting the language of God the Creator and he also conceived that the poetic imagination,Continue reading “THE LANGUAGE OF THE SUN AND MOON : DRAWING ON BOEHME.”

RIME OF ANCIENT MARINER: PART 4 COLERIDGE, ADDICTION, RELEASE.

PART 4 “I fear thee ancient Mariner! I fear thy skinny hand! And thou art long,and lank, and brown, As is the ribbed sea-sand. I fear thee and thy glittering eye, And thy skinny hand so brown.”- Fear not, fear not thou Wedding-Guest! This body dropt not down. Alone, alone, all,all alone, Alone on aContinue reading “RIME OF ANCIENT MARINER: PART 4 COLERIDGE, ADDICTION, RELEASE.”

“WIST YE NOT…”

Language is not natural but a young child’s love of language, of words, of rhymes, of rhythms seems to be part of who they are, as essential to their development as learning to eat, to walk, or to explore. They absorb the words spoken to them and seek to repeat those words. They are taughtContinue reading ““WIST YE NOT…””

FURTHER THOUGHTS ON PART 3

Coleridge in his young twenties was an active supporter of the anti-slavery movement. Editing a radical newsletter, The Watchman, which argued for anti- slavery legislation and other causes raised by the French Revolution he would go round Bristol Harbour talking to ships’ captains and their crews about their experiences of the slave trade as wellContinue reading “FURTHER THOUGHTS ON PART 3”