Song by Ben Jonson (11th June, 1572 – 6th August, 1637)
So breaks the sun earth’s rugged chains,
Wherein rude winter bound her veins;
So grows both stream and source of price,
That lately fettered were with ice.
So naked trees get crispèd heads,
And coloured coats the roughest meads,
And all get vigour, youth and spright,
That are but looked on by his light.
Red Vineyards by Vincent van Gogh (1888)
- To My Book by Ben Jonson (ipseand.wordpress.com)
- The Mind of the Frontispiece to a Book by Ben Jonson (ipseand.wordpress.com)
calm, deep, God, Harriet Beecher Stowe, life, Literature, National Historic Landmark, nature, ocean, passion, Peace, poetry, quietness, raging sea, slience, soul, storm, tempest, Uncle Tom's Cabin, wind
When Winds are Raging O’er the Upper Ocean
Harriet Beecher Stowe (14th June, 1811 – 1st July, 1896)
When winds are raging o’er the upper ocean,
And billows wild contend with angry roar,
’Tis said, far down beneath the wild commotion,
That peaceful stillness reigneth evermore.
Far, far beneath the noise of tempest dieth,
And silver waves chime ever peacefully;
And no rude storm, how fierce so’er he flieth,
Disturbs the Sabbath of that deeper sea.
So to the soul that knows Thy love, O Purest.
There is a temple peaceful evermore.
And all the babble of life’s angry voices
Dies in hushed stillness at its sacred door.
Far, far away the noise of passion dieth,
And loving thoughts rise ever peacefully;
And no rude storm, how fierce so’er he flieth,
Disturbs that deepest rest, O Lord in Thee.
Painting by Joseph Mallord William Turner, RA (circa 1775 – 1851)
Emily Dickinson (10th December 10, 1830 – 15th May, 1886)
The daisy follows soft the sun,
And when his golden walk is done,
Sits shyly at his feet.
He, waking, finds the flower near.
“Wherefore, marauder, art thou here?”
“Because, sir, love is sweet!”
We are the flower, Thou the sun!
Forgive us, if as days decline,
We nearer steal to Thee,—
Enamoured of the parting west,
The peace, the flight, the amethyst,
- Perhaps You’d Like to Buy a Flower by Emily Dickinson (ipseand.wordpress.com)
- Nobody Knows this Little Rose by Emily Dickinson (ipseand.wordpress.com)
- I’m Nobody! Who are you? by Emily Dickinson (ipseand.wordpress.com)
- Hope is the Thing with Feathers by Emily Dickinson (ipseand.wordpress.com)
Rabindranath Tagore (7th May, 1861 – 7th August, 1941)
The morning sea of silence broke into ripples of bird songs;
and the flowers were all merry by the roadside;
and the wealth of gold was scattered through the rift of the clouds
while we busily went on our way and paid no heed.
We sang no glad songs nor played;
we went not to the village for barter;
we spoke not a word nor smiled;
we lingered not on the way.
We quickened our pace more and more as the time sped by.
The sun rose to the mid sky and doves cooed in the shade.
Withered leaves danced and whirled in the hot air of noon.
The shepherd boy drowsed and dreamed in the shadow of the banyan tree,
and I laid myself down by the water
and stretched my tired limbs on the grass.
My companions laughed at me in scorn;
they held their heads high and hurried on;
they never looked back nor rested;
they vanished in the distant blue haze.
They crossed many meadows and hills,
and passed through strange, far-away countries.
All honor to you, heroic host of the interminable path!
Mockery and reproach pricked me to rise,
but found no response in me.
I gave myself up for lost
in the depth of a glad humiliation
–in the shadow of a dim delight.
The repose of the sun–embroidered green gloom
slowly spread over my heart.
I forgot for what I had traveled,
and I surrendered my mind without struggle
to the maze of shadows and songs.
At last, when I woke from my slumber and opened my eyes,
I saw thee standing by me, flooding my sleep with thy smile.
How I had feared that the path was long and wearisome,
and the struggle to reach thee was hard!
Nay, Lord, not thus! white lilies in the spring,
Sad olive-groves, or silver-breasted dove,
Teach me more clearly of Thy life and love
Than terrors of red flame and thundering.
The hillside vines dear memories of Thee bring:
A bird at evening flying to its nest
Tells me of One who had no place of rest:
I think it is of Thee the sparrows sing.
Come rather on some autumn afternoon,
When red and brown are burnished on the leaves,
And the fields echo to the gleaner’s song,
Come when the splendid fulness of the moon
Looks down upon the rows of golden sheaves,
And reap Thy harvest: we have waited long.
Excerpt from Elegy in Joy
Muriel Rukeyser (15th December, 1913 – 12th February, 1980)
We tell beginnings: for the flesh and the answer,
or the look, the lake in the eye that knows,
for the despair that flows down in widest rivers,
cloud of home; and also the green tree of grace,
all in the leaf, in the love that gives us ourselves.
The word of nourishment passes through the women,
soldiers and orchards rooted in constellations,
white towers, eyes of children:
saying in time of war What shall we feed?
I cannot say the end.
Nourish beginnings, let us nourish beginnings.
Not all things are blest, but the
seeds of all things are blest.
The blessing is in the seed.
This moment, this seed, this wave of the sea, this look, this instant of love.
Years over wars and an imagining of peace. Or the expiation journey
toward peace which is many wishes flaming together,
fierce pure life, the many-living home.
Love that gives us ourselves, in the world known to all
new techniques for the healing of the wound,
and the unknown world. One life, or the faring stars.
Excerpt from Thoughtful Relics of Rabindranath Tagore:
It is still dark. The day is about to dawn. The stall-keepers, who gathered for the festival fair, have spent the winter night singing round the lighted fires. Now they are preparing to disperse. Their noise, unlike the birds’ notes, disturbs the morning peace.
For man stands at the parting of the ways. His strings have to be tuned for a deeper and a more complex music than those of nature. Man has his mind which reasons, and his will which seeks its own path. These have not yet found their full harmony with their surroundings. Therefore they are apt to break out in the ugliness of discord.
But in this very ugliness lies the great hope of the future. For these discords are not mere facts which we are compelled to acknowledge; they are ugly facts. This itself asserts every moment, that they are not what they should be; they are incomplete, and they are hopeful because they are painful.