Tag Archives: Carry a poem

Whose words sum up your spring?

Last February, inspired by Edinburgh’s ‘Carry a poem’ reading campaign, I wrote about  William Blake’s ‘Augeries of Innocence’, a poem I ‘carry’ with me and find soothing and inspiring.

Today, as the weather starts to become milder and I finally feel like we’re entering spring, another poem came to mind – Wordsworth’s ‘Daffodils.’ This is also a poem I have carried with me for some time, which always comes to mind at this time of year. Whenever I hear or see it I think of clear blue skies and lush green fields, and imagine myself walking over a hill to be greeted by Wordsworth’s dancing daffodils, their golden faces smiling towards me. Just thinking about it now brings a smile to my face.

So, I thought I would simply share this with you today and hope it takes you to that happy place it takes me to:

I wandered lonely as a cloud
That floats on high o’er vales and hills,
When all at once I saw a crowd,
A host, of golden daffodils;
Beside the lake, beneath the trees,
Fluttering and dancing in the breeze.

Continuous as the stars that shine
And twinkle on the milky way,
They stretched in never-ending line
Along the margin of a bay:
Ten thousand saw I at a glance,
Tossing their heads in sprightly dance.

The waves beside them danced, but they
Out-did the sparkling leaves in glee;
A poet could not be but gay,
In such a jocund company!
I gazed—and gazed—but little thought
What wealth the show to me had brought:

For oft, when on my couch I lie
In vacant or in pensive mood,
They flash upon that inward eye
Which is the bliss of solitude;
And then my heart with pleasure fills,
And dances with the daffodils.

Many thanks to John Johnston for letting me use this lovely photograph of Daffodils after the rain from his garden in the spring.

What poems do you think of at this time of year, and where do they take you to..?

I carry poems

I have been over at Carry a Poem , reading about how people carry poems with them.  I especially like Katie’s post (from 5th February), the line: ‘And I am definitely okay with trying.’ has stayed with me.  If anyone knows who the poem by, please leave a comment and let me know!

The poem I carry with me, for so long now that I feel like I’ve always known it, is the first line of William Blake’s ‘Augeries of Innocence’ –

To see a world in a grain of sand,
And a heaven in a wild flower,
Hold infinity in the palm of your hand,
And eternity in an hour.

There’s just something so soothing about it, and it reminds me that no matter how insignificant things might appear to be, there is always more to be seen, if we look for it.

Thinking about carrying poems also made me think about how I carry mine; where do I carry my words in the gestation period before they are reborn as poetry?  Well, it’s a bit like this:

I carry poems

I carry poems with me
Many different ones each day
I keep them in my head and heart
And collect more along my way

My heart is always full to bursting
But there’ll always be more space
For the poetry I see daily
In all kinds of places and on so many faces

I add more poems as I see them
And I see them all the time
I take mental snapshots of moments
Wrap them in words to make them mine

I carry the man outside the supermarket with a sleeping bag over his head
I carry the words I’ve still to let go of, those that made me see red 
I carry his frown lines
I carry her smile
I carry his laughter
I carry your sense of style

I carry the words that lie beneath those that you use
I carry your pain
I carry my muse

I carry all this and more
All of the time
Then give birth to new poems
And hope you might carry mine.