Friday, January 22, 2010


From The Leaden Echo and the Golden Echo (Maidens’ song from St. Winefred’s Well), Gerard Manley Hopkins (1844-89)

HOW to kéep—is there ány, any,
is there none such, nowhere known some, bow or
Brooch or braid or brace, láce, latch or catch or key to keep
Back beauty, keep it, beauty, beauty, beauty,… from vanishing away?

Come then, your ways and airs and looks, locks, maiden gear, gallantry and gaiety and grace,
Winning ways, airs innocent, maiden manners, sweet looks, loose locks, long locks,
Lovelocks, gaygear, going gallant, girlgrace—
Resign them, sign them, seal them, send them, motion them with breath,
And with sigh soaring, soaring síghs deliver
Them; beauty-in-the ghost-, deliver it, early now, long before death
Give beauty back, beauty, beauty, beauty...
Eccentric accent marks and all, Hopkins' poems rock. I would love to hear Diane Cluck sing them.

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