Tuesday, January 31, 2012

O Thou, England!

by Dawn Pisturino

Away, away in a distant land
More green and mild
Than a summer's day;
More grey and wild
Than an ocean bay,
O thou, England!---Verdant isle of my dreams!
Fallen anew
On the ripened arbour,
Sea mist and dew
Shroud the ocean harbour:
My heart yearns to wade through thy soaking sand
And ramble along thy running streams!

So far, so far---and yet, so near
Thy splendid beauty lies,
A sparkling jewel among the blue
Of ocean, sea, and skies!
And would I could, I'd wish it true,
O thou, England!---How kettles then would madly boil!
Blazing fires would crackle and snap,
Scones would bubble and rise;
Glad would I roam thy wooded map
In harmony with the coveted prize:
Down would I bend to drop a tear
And kiss thy wet and fertile soil.

September 27, 1986
Written for my penpal, Janet, in Chichester, West Sussex, England

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

The Age of Elegance

by Dawn Pisturino

Velvet, lace, satin,
Silk, brocade;
Long, billowy dresses
With tight bodices
Cut low and alluring.
Fluttering fans
And white hair piled high
As a snow-capped mountain
On heads delicately balanced
On long, slender necks.

Velvet, lace, satin,
Silk, brocade;
Tight breeches
And tailor-made jackets
Elegantly embellished;
Sheer white stockings
Tightly pulled up the legs;
Pilgrim shoes with shiny brass buckles
And scarlet high heels.
Lacy handkerchiefs,
Gold snuff boxes,
And fans conveying
Secret messages to lady loves
And mistresses already married.

Velvet, lace, satin,
Silk, brocade;
Drawing room comedies,
String quartets,
And illicit love-making
In the gold-leaf box seats,
Hidden by gold-leaf grapevines
And golden bunches of grapes.
The Age of Elegance, indeed,
And the Age of Grace.

Dedicated to the Memory of Marie Antoinette

Copyright 2012Dawn Pisturino. All Rights Reserved.

Sunday, January 1, 2012

Ring Out, Wild Bells

by Alfred, Lord Tennyson

Ring out, wild bells, to the wild sky,
The flying cloud, the frosty light:
The year is dying in the night;
Ring out, wild bells, and let him die.

Ring out the old, ring in the new,
Ring, happy bells, across the snow:
The year is going, let him go;
Ring out the false, ring in the true.

Ring out the grief that saps the mind,
For those that here we see no more;
Ring out the feud of rich and poor,
Ring in redress to all mankind.

Ring out a slowly dying cause,
And ancient forms of party strife;
Ring in the nobler modes of life,
With sweeter manners, purer laws.

Ring out the want, the care, the sin,
The faithless coldness of the times;
Ring out, ring out my mournful rhymes,
But ring the fuller minstrel in.

Ring out false pride in place and blood,
The civic slander and the spite;
Ring in the love of truth and right,
Ring in the common love of good.

Ring out old shapes of foul disease,
Ring out the narrowing lust of gold;
Ring out the thousand wars of old,
Ring in the thousand years of peace.

Ring in the valiant man and free,
The larger heart, the kindlier hand;
Ring out the darkness of the land,
Ring in the Christ that is to be.

BIO: Born August 6, 1809, Tennyson was appointed Poet Laureate in 1850 by Queen Victoria. He died October 6, 1892 and was buried in Poet's Corner at Westminster Abbey.