CXXVIII

Wordsworth wrote an endless poem in blank verse on” the growth of a poet’s mind.”  I shall attempt a more modest feat for a more distracted age: a blog, “Things which a Lifetime of Trying to Be a Poet has Taught Me.”

One of the great but neglected American poets of the Twentieth Century was Robinson Jeffers, whose words are like chisels striking the hard granite of his thought.

Robinson Jeffers

Robinson Jeffers

Read Robinson Jeffers

Read Robinson Jeffers and learn to hew

The strong line from thought as firm as stone

With words sharp as chisels, hard as hammers.

Make it sing like wind in twisted cypress,

Waves warring with the granite sea-cliffs.

Make it speak the slow sanity

Of field and wood beneath the winter sky.

Learn to love the world for what it is,

Embracing pain if pain is what is real—

The harder mysticism of the West:

To love the world outside the brain-vault.  Seek

The peace that’s almost there in solitude.

Read his poetry and learn his madness:

A heart hurt by hawks and not quite healed

By sea-voice, cypress, starlit distances

Between the mountains and mankind’s corruption.

Knew the Sickness, knew Redeemer Death

The only way to be cleansed, and did not know

It had been died already; saw the wild

God of the world from afar and partly loved him.

Tell his tragedy:  never knew him.

Hawk Tower and Tor House, built by Jeffers gy hand.

Hawk Tower and Tor House, built by Jeffers by hand.

Remember: for more poetry like this, go to https://lanternhollow.wordpress.com/store/ and order Stars Through the Clouds! Also look for Inklings of Reality and Reflections from Plato’s Cave, Williams’ newest books from Lantern Hollow Press: Evangelical essays in pursuit of Truth, Goodness, and Beauty.

A book that fights back against the encroaching darkness.

A book that fights back against the encroaching darkness.

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About gandalf30598

Theologian, philosopher, poet, and critic; minister of the Gospel who makes his living by teaching medieval and renaissance literature; dual citizen of Narnia and Middle Earth.

Posted on November 9, 2015, in Donald Williams, Poetics, Poetry and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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