I ... entered the poem of life, whose purpose is ... simply to witness the beauties of the world,
to discover the many forms that love can take. (Barabara Blackman in 'Glass After Glass')

These poems are works in progress and may be updated without notice. Nevertheless copyright applies to all writings here and all photos (which are either my own or used with permission). Thank you for your comments. I read and appreciate them all, and reply here to specific points that seem to need it — or as I have the leisure. Otherwise I reciprocate by reading and commenting on your blog posts as much as possible.

14 September 2015

Inspired by the Poetry of Thom Gunn

How gratefully his words describe a hug
that holds his resting body all night long.

With what restraint, yet cruel accuracy
he observes the tattooed street kid ‘born to lose’.

In detailed metaphor, and with respect,
he gives me new perspective on a snail.

He painted sharp a scene that I still see
of lovers bathing, forty years ago.

There’s quietness even in dramatic lines,
which goes too deep for me to emulate.

He’s dead. He left me art I can’t forget
which shakes me, fills me, and restores my peace –

for beauty so well ordered can do that –
a man I never knew, a stranger I love.


In the Sunday Mini-Challenge at 'imaginary garden for real toads' Grace invites us to write something inspired by Thom Gunn – a poet of whom I am so much in awe that at first I didn't think I could. But after all, I wasn't asked to live up to him.

I'm also linking to Poets United's Poetry Pantry #269


30 comments:

  1. speaker's reverence and awe is well expressed..."He’s dead. He left me art I can’t forget / which shakes me, fills me, and restores my peace –"...my favorite lines...

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  2. This is just the best tribute a poet could have. I really love him also. I especially love your opening stanza--the hug that lasted all night long and the kind of solace one feels of that through your solace--and the lovers bathing, the snail--(great poems) --but I understand just what you mean about loving a stranger through their words--what a gift the published word is. Thanks, Rosemary, for this take, and thanks also for your kind comment. k.

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  3. I love how you have picked up themes from Thom's poetry, there are themes and subjects we might love, but in the end it's that they touch our hearts isn't it?

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  4. This is a stellar tribute to the poet and I admire how you weaved your admiration of his poems ~

    My favorite verse would be:

    He’s dead. He left me art I can’t forget
    which shakes me, fills me, and restores my peace –

    And I do know what you mean about loving a stranger through his words ~

    Thanks for participating Rosemary ~

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  5. There are some poets' writing that leave us in awe. It sounds like Thom Gunn is one of those poets for you.

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  6. Perfect, Rosemary. I loved best the same lines Grace quotes. And love the idea of that painting of lovers bathing.

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  7. What a wonderful tribute ...

    'He left me art I can’t forget
    which shakes me, fills me, and restores my peace –'

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  8. This is such a wonderful tribute :D these are my favorite lines:

    for beauty so well ordered can do that –
    a man I never knew, a stranger I love.

    Beautifully executed.
    Lots of love,
    Sanaa

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  9. Amen! I wish I had written this, inspired by him but applicable to many of the poets and writers who brought me love and new sight.

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  10. glad you were inspired today - solid piece

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  11. How well you have described the inspiration we get when such beauty of expression sinks and we finally see the light. Beautiful.

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  12. The reverence paid to someone, a stranger, who's words who leave a lasting impression, so beautiful.

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  13. a lovely tribute for a poet.
    and he and his art had truly inspired you.

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  14. Thank you for the introduction. Now I must go and read Thom Gunn,

    Elizabeth

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  15. Perhaps strangers are the best to love - they can't disappoint after all - There’s quietness even in dramatic lines - a brilliant line in this wise poem...quiet reveals a lot if we let it

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  16. for beauty so well ordered can do that –
    a man I never knew, a stranger I love.

    Beautiful words Rosemary! It shows the strength of Thom's writing that can win over and mesmerize readers

    Hank

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  17. There is beauty, serenity and such reverence in this poem... I read aloud, several times, and my chest filled with the feelings the line speak of. The pain for an admired soul that is now gone, is wonderfully balance by the joy of knowing that his art (and the art it inspires) will always be. ♥

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  18. He did leave us his art! Wonderful tribute!

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  19. A wonderful tribute indeed! Any poet who has that effect on a reader is a great writer.

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  20. What a lovely tribute ... your words, so tender.

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  21. art music writing, all are great depictions and portrayals of ones heart, mind and soul
    you depicted this well in this piece

    gracias

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  22. The art of writing is beautiful when it touches so many hearts as this poet did. I believe your poem also touched all those who came by to read

    ps - I will be going to a Fall Equinox celebration next weekend. A time of change and to welcome in the new season and her gifts.

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    1. Whereas I'll be celebrating Spring Equinox. (Smile.)

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  23. Goosebumps...this is a touching tribute, Rosemary. You've brought such beautiful examples of why this artist is amazing. Thank you!

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  24. a wonderful ode to your favorite poet. very touching. thanks for your kind words for him. you are nice and that's good.

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