Monday, May 10, 2010

houses to hold countries

I dwell in Possibility -
A fairer house than Prose -
More numerous of Windows -
Superior - for Doors -

Of Chambers as the Cedars -
Impregnable of Eye -
And for an Everlasting Roof
The Gambrels of the Sky -

Of Visitors - the fairest -
For Occupation - This -
The spreading wide my narrow Hands
To gather Paradise -

#657, by Emily Dickinson
In May 2009 Bill Murray read a few poems, including the one above (@ 2:35), to members of the construction team building Poets House, a national poetry library and literary center located on the Hudson River in Battery Park City (the facility opened to the public in September). After reading the poem Mr. Murray made a little speech.
Thank you for building this and putting yourselves into it, the way the poets put themselves into their words and the way all New Yorkers put themselves into what they really gravitate to, what really makes them a man or a woman. And this site is - I know you all feel it when you come here - I know I feel it when I come down here - the fact that it's going to be here is a pretty nice piece of bliss, it's a little bit of balm, it's the hope that comes out at the end from Pandora's Box.

I like what Bill Murray said and connect it with the appreciation I feel for the good carpenters who built the lovely church down the road from me with obvious skill, love, and care, more than 160 years ago.



Sweet Mountains -- Ye tell Me no lie --
Never deny Me -- Never fly --
Those same unvarying Eyes
Turn on Me -- when I fail -- or feign,
Or take the Royal names in vain --
Their far -- slow -- Violet Gaze --

My Strong Madonnas -- Cherish still --
The Wayward Nun -- beneath the Hill --
Whose service -- is to You --
Her latest Worship -- When the Day
Fades from the Firmament away --
To lift Her Brows on You --

#722, by Emily Dickinson

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