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A collection of some old poems


A Glimpse

A Glimpse, through an interstice caught,
Of a crowd of workmen and drivers in a bar-room, around the stove,
late of a winter night--And I unremark'd seated in a corner;
Of a youth who loves me, and whom I love, silently approaching, and
seating himself near, that he may hold me by the hand;
A long while, amid the noises of coming and going--of drinking and
oath and smutty jest,
There we two, content, happy in being together, speaking little,
perhaps not a word.

Walt Whitman 1819 - 1892




Through the long night

You, proud curved-lipped youth, with brown sensitive face,
Why suddenly, as you sat there on the grass, did you turn full upon
me those twin black eyes of yours,
With gaze so absorbing so intense, I a strong man trembled
and was faint?
Why in a moment between me and you in the full summer afternoon
did Love sweep - leading after it in the procession across the lawn
and the flowers and under the waving trees huge dusky shadows
of Death and the other world?
I know not.
Solemn and dewy-passionate, yet burning clear and steadfast
at the last,
Through the long night those eyes of yours, dear, remain to me -
And I remain gazing into them.

Edward Carpenter 1844 - 1929




I love this boy, not for his beauty only,
But just because my life that was so lonely
Knows in his presence some strange healing power,
An unfamiliar peace-as if each hour
Should pause a little in its swift-winged flight
And breathe a benediction. In his bright
Blue eyes his happy spirit sits and smiles,
And never evil dreams, or wanton wiles,
Or lusts o'ercloud their sweet serenity:
I dare not hope-but, when he looks at me,
Something half shy, half-trusting, leaps therein
And shadows of dead passion and old sin
All dreadful haunting memories, take flight.
You think I'm happy? Well, Perhaps you're right!

F.S. Woodley 1888 - 1957




To Eros

In that I loved you, Love, I worshipped you,
In that I worshipped well, I sacrificed
All of most worth. I bound and burnt and slew
Old peaceful lives; frail flowers; firm friends; and Christ.

I slew all falser loves; I slew all true,
That I might nothing love but your truth, Boy.
Fair fame I cast away as bridegrooms do
Their wedding garments in their haste of joy.

But when I fell upon your sandalled feet,
You laughed; you loosed away my lips; you rose.
I heard the singing of your wing's retreat;
Far-flown, I watched you flush the Olympian snows
Beyond my hoping. Starkly I returned
To stare upon the ash of all I burned.

Wilfred Owen 1893 - 1918

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