I never used like poetry. I thought it was schmaltzy. But then one day I read a poem by James Whitcomb Riley, and I discovered that it contained not a speck of schmaltz, but rather was musical and folksy, and I liked it. With that beginning, my opinion of poetry gradually changed and I learned to like it. I have even dabbled in composing a very few poems myself when so moved (or so instructed, when I learned about poetry in school). But as books of poetry do not enjoy the popularity of the Hunger Games books among the general public nowadays, and one doesn’t hear poetry quoted as often as it used to be, a definite pursuit of the subject is required in order to gain more than a rudimentary knowledge of it – a pursuit that I haven’t taken as much time as I would like to engage in.
So, as it every so often does, the subject of poetry and my lack of knowledge of it crossed my mind the other day, followed by a rare brilliant thought. Why not blog about one poem a week? It would improve the regularity of my posts, but wouldn’t have to take very much time to publish, and would consistently increase my knowledge of poetry each week. Perfect.
The Fireside Poets were the only thing to come to my mind as I was trying to think of what my first poem post ought to be about, so I looked them up and found out that my (at the present – we’ll see if it changes as I discover more poets) favorite poet, Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, was one of them! I knew that. Really, I did learn it in school, but I forgot. 😛 Sooo I looked him up, and after skimming the titles of a few of his many poems, I found one which I thought was quite appropriate since it is April and spring has been showing us quite a charming face around here lately – except for the ticks, that is. Ticks are never charming. On that lovely note, here it is, “An April Day”, by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow.
An April Day
I love the season well,
When forest glades are teeming with bright forms,
Nor dark and many-folded clouds foretell
The coming-on of storms.
From the earth’s loosened mould
The sapling draws its sustenance, and thrives;
Though stricken to the heart with winter’s cold,
The drooping tree revives.
The softly-warbled song
Comes from the pleasant woods, and colored wings
Glance quick in the bright sun, that moves along
The forest openings.
When the bright sunset fills
The silver woods with light, the green slope throws
Its shadows in the hollows of the hills,
And wide the upland glows.
And when the eve is born,
In the blue lake the sky, o’er-reaching far,
Is hollowed out and the moon dips her horn,
And twinkles many a star.
Inverted in the tide
Stand the gray rocks, and trembling shadows throw,
And the fair trees look over, side by side,
And see themselves below.
Sweet April! many a thought
Is wedded unto thee, as hearts are wed;
Nor shall they fail, till, to its autumn brought,
Life’s golden fruit is shed.