Sunday, August 19, 2007

Other People's Words

By way of John Van Druten (in Playwright at Work), here's Robert Graves' "A Pinch of Salt":

When a dream is born in you
With a sudden clamorous pain,
When you know the dream is true
And lovely, with no flaw nor strain,
O then, be careful, or with sudden clutch
You'll hurt the delicate thing you prize so much.

Dreams are like a bird that mocks,
Flirting the feathers of his tail.
When you seize at the salt box,
Over the hedge you'll see him sail.
Old birds are neither caught with salt nor chaff:
They watch you from the apple bough and laugh.

Poet, never chase the dream.
Laugh yourself and turn away.
Mask your hunger; let it seem
Small matter if he come or stay;
But when he nestles in your hand at last,
Close up your fingers tight and hold him fast.

You can hear it read aloud to you (always a treat) at LibriVox.

It's not that I'm not writing, by the by. Just overwhelmed by tasks and lack of time. The construction noises continued this morning at a much too early hour -- I guess they need to finish before classes begin. Next door, the motorcycle gal's kids bounce on the sproingy trampoline and tear at my concentration. Work to do, work to do.

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