September Song

Geoffrey Hill

September Song
born 19.6.32 – deported 24.9.42

Undesirable you may have been, untouchable
you were not. Not forgotten 
or passed over at the proper time.

As estimated, you died. Things marched, 
sufficient, to that end.
Just so much Zyklon and leather, patented 
terror, so many routine cries.

(I have made
an elegy for myself it 
is true)

September fattens on vines. Roses 
flake from the wall. The smoke 
of harmless fires drifts to my eyes.

This is plenty. This is more than enough.

Geoffrey Hill
September Song by Geoffrey Hill © 1994 taken from Selected Poems (Viking) at £9.99

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Faintheart In A Railway Train

Faintheart In A Railway Train

Poem by Thomas Hardy

At nine in the morning there passed a church,
At ten there passed me by the sea,
At twelve a town of smoke and smirch,
At two a forest of oak and birch,
   And then, on a platform, she:
A radiant stranger, who saw not me.
I said, "Get out to her do I dare?"
But I kept my seat in my search for a plea,
And the wheels moved on. O could it but be
   That I had alighted there!

Come live with me, and be my love

John Donne (* 22. Januar 1572 in London, † 31. März 1631 ebenda)

Come live with me, and be my love,
And we will some new pleasures prove
Of golden sands, and crystal brooks,
With silken lines, and silver hooks.

There will the river whispering run
Warm’d by thy eyes, more than the sun;
And there the ‚enamour’d fish will stay,
Begging themselves they may betray.

When thou wilt swim in that live bath,
Each fish, which every channel hath,
Will amorously to thee swim,
Gladder to catch thee, than thou him.

If thou, to be so seen, be’st loth,
By sun or moon, thou dark’nest both,
And if myself have leave to see,
I need not their light having thee.

Let others freeze with angling reeds,
And cut their legs with shells and weeds,
Or treacherously poor fish beset,
With strangling snare, or windowy net.

Let coarse bold hands from slimy nest
The bedded fish in banks out-wrest;
Or curious traitors, sleeve-silk flies,
Bewitch poor fishes‘ wand’ring eyes.

For thee, thou need’st no such deceit,
For thou thyself art thine own bait:
That fish, that is not catch’d thereby,
Alas, is wiser far than I.