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FROM THE ARCHIVE 8th April 2013

The Liverpool poet Roger McGough never ceases to enthrall me. I was reminded of this marvellous poem by a friend who posted it on Facebook yesterday.  McGough makes you smile and always makes trenc…

Source: Carpe Diem: Let me die a youngman’s death by Roger McGough | First Night Design

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FROM THE ARCHIVE 23rd April 2013

I have used a rose from The Graphics Fairy and a background from Kerstin Frank to create an image for William Blake’s poem, The Sick Rose. Blake, of c…

Source: The Sick Rose by William Blake | First Night Design


ONE FROM THE ARCHIVE.

First Night Design

To see a fine lady upon a white horse © First Night DesignTo see a fine lady upon a white horse © First Night Design

Ride a cock-horse to Banbury Cross,
To see a fine lady upon a white horse;
Rings on her fingers and bells on her toes,
She shall have music wherever she goes.
by Mother Goose

I used a background from Kerstin Frank, one from EKDuncan, and the image of a beautifully embroidered costume from the Rijksmuseum. The fine lady on her white horse is from a scrapbook made for me when I was a child.

Take care and keep laughing!

Sarah

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I am reblogging Luixe’s post as an adjunct to my previous post – “Destiny itself is like a wonderful wide tapestry in which…” – in which I quote Rainer Maria Rilke.

The Genealogy of Style

Rainer Maria Rilke photographed by George Bernard Shaw, 1906

“You who never arrived
in my arms, Beloved, who were lost
from the start,
I don’t even know what songs
would please you. I have given up trying
to recognize you in the surging wave of
the next moment. All the immense
images in me — the far-off, deeply-felt
landscape, cities, towers, and bridges, and
unsuspected turns in the path,
and those powerful lands that were once
pulsing with the life of the gods–
all rise within me to mean
you, who forever elude me.

You, Beloved, who are all
the gardens I have ever gazed at,
longing. An open window
in a country house– , and you almost
stepped out, pensive, to meet me.
Streets that I chanced upon,–
you had just walked down them and vanished.
And sometimes, in a shop, the mirrors
were still dizzy with your presence…

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Loss by Wendy Cope

The day he moved out was terrible –
That evening she went through hell.
His absence wasn’t a problem
But the corkscrew had gone as well.

from Serious Concerns pub. 1993

Take care and keep laughing!

Sarah


A moving poem for Remembrance Day by Seumas Gallacher published on my history blog.

First Night History

At the Going Down of the SunAt the Going Down of the Sun © Sarah Vernon

Tell Me, John, Let Me Hear it Once

by Seumas Gallacher

Tell me, John, let me hear it once

From beyond the grave wherein you lie.

Tell me once, that I may know

Why the Hell did you have to die?

Now that I myself am growing old

As you were not allowed to do,

When your country went to War,

Killing them, and us, and you.

Is Humanity so bereft

Of sense and sensibility?

That murder dressed as War

Is the tip of Man’s ability?

Yes, my dear, I understand

There’s times to right the wrong

When Nation pits at Nation

To prove which one is strong.

But feel each mother’s loss

The angst, the grief, the pain

It’s no use telling them,

‘Let them not have died in vain’.

For every priceless child that’s gone,

Every precious son…

View original post 85 more words


NPDLive

National Poetry Day 2nd October 

I’m nothing if not occasionally predictable so here is my favourite Philip Larkin to celebrate National Poetry Day. If you’re wondering why this should be predictable, check here!

This Be The Verse

by Philip Larkin

They fuck you up, your mum and dad.
They may not mean to, but they do.
They fill you with the faults they had
And add some extra, just for you.

But they were fucked up in their turn
By fools in old-style hats and coats,
Who half the time were soppy-stern
And half at one another’s throats.

Man hands on misery to man.
It deepens like a coastal shelf.
Get out as early as you can,
And don’t have any kids yourself.

Take care and keep laughing!

Sarah


Ride a cock-horse to Banbury Cross,
To see a fine lady upon a white horse;
Rings on her fingers and bells on her toes,
She shall have music wherever she goes.
by Mother Goose

I used a background from Kerstin Frank, one from EKDuncan, and the image of a beautifully embroidered costume from the Rijksmuseum. The fine lady on her white horse is from a scrapbook made for me when I was a child.

Take care and keep laughing!

Sarah


O Rose Thou Art SickO Rose Thou Art Sick by FirstNightDesign

I have used a rose from The Graphics Fairy and a background from Kerstin Frank to create an image for William Blake’s poem, The Sick Rose. Blake, of course, did his own illuminated border and illustration, which is rather different to my interpretation, as you can see below.

The Sick Rose by William Blake

O Rose thou art sick.
The invisible worm,
That flies in the night
In the howling storm:

Has found out thy bed
Of crimson joy:
And his dark secret love
Does thy life destroy.

William Blake's The Sick Rose

William Blake’s The Sick Rose c1896 © The Fitzwilliam Museum, Cambridge [credit: Wikipedia]

Take care and keep laughing!

Sarah


youngmansdeathblog

Youngman’s Death @ First Night Design

The Liverpool poet Roger McGough never ceases to enthrall me. I was reminded of this marvellous poem by a friend who posted it on Facebook yesterday.  McGough makes you smile and always makes trenchant points on whichever subject he writes about.

When I was in my thirties, I went back into education to do a Humanities degree. I did not complete the course, partly because I became ill and partly because I started resenting the way literature was being examined.  The pulling apart of sentences to build or deduce meaning began to ruin my native enjoyment.  I did not want to finish the degree and, like a then neighbour of mine, find I had no desire to pick up another work of fiction or book of poetry.  This neighbour had studied History at Oxford and in the fifteen or so years since, had read perhaps one history book.

That is not to decry what such study can do. I learned a great deal and was introduced to writers I had never considered reading such as Doris Lessing and the poet Grace Nichols.

In the meantime, I urge you to read what you will into Let me die a youngman’s death.  And whatever you think or feel about what he is saying is every bit as valuable and ‘right’ and ‘true’ as the pontificating of any literary critic. McGough, in a recent article in The Daily Telegraph recalls how he became hooked on poetry during a Physics lesson at his Catholic school: ‘To hell with this, let’s have some poetry,’ Brother Ryan said, and he’d close his eyes and recite a poem in Gaelic. I was transfixed because it was poetry out of context, rather than, ‘Turn to page 156 and tell me what the poet means at line 17.’

Let me die a youngman’s death by Roger McGough

Let me die a youngman’s death
not a clean and inbetween
the sheets holywater death
not a famous-last-words
peaceful out of breath death

When I’m 73
and in constant good tumour
may I be mown down at dawn
by a bright red sports car
on my way home
from an allnight party

Or when I’m 91
with silver hair
and sitting in a barber’s chair
may rival gangsters
with hamfisted tommyguns burst in
and give me a short back and insides

Or when I’m 104
and banned from the Cavern
may my mistress
catching me in bed with her daughter
and fearing for her son
cut me up into little pieces
and throw away every piece but one

Let me die a youngman’s death
not a free from sin tiptoe in
candle wax and waning death
not a curtains drawn by angels borne
‘what a nice way to go’ death

Take care and keep laughing!

Sarah


I am re-blogging this poem from Gman’s Galaxy as it makes me laugh and cry.  Why?  I broke my femur at the end of last year and it’s a cracking good poem!  You will see below my X-rays.  Both the text and picture links will take you George’s poem.

Fractured Bone Poem

Femur X-Rays

Take care and keep laughing.

Sarah

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