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Archive for February, 2012

English: Postcard: Leap Year, 1908 Description...

 
            February 29

One year in four has extra day,
   A way of making one
From extra fourths Earth on its way
   Took going ’round the sun.

Catching up, all surely need,
   So here’s what I propose:
A day for all of no new deed,
   Just bring the old to close.

We all have fourths or fifths undone,
   A stack of things to do.
Let earthlings be like Earth this one
   Day, and be caught up too.

I’ve looked around; I’ve made my list
   Of old chores piled in heap;
And out of all things in my fist,
   I’ll catch up first – on sleep.

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image through Wikipedia – a post card about Leap Year from 1908,
showing the Sadie Hawkins tradition of women getting to be the 
pursuers and the askers

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© Dennis Lange and thebardonthehill.wordpress.com, 2012.

 

 

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Highgate Cemetery.

 

          Requiescat

Strew on her roses, roses,
   And never a spray of yew!
In quiet she reposes;
   Ah! would that I did too.

Her mirth the world required;
   She bathed it in smiles of glee.
But her heart was tired, tired,
   And now they let her be.

Her life was turning, turning,
   In mazes of heat and sound,
But for peace her soul was yearning,
   And now peace laps her round.

  Her cabin’d, ample spirit,
   It flutter’d and fail’d for breath.
To-night it doth inherit
   The vasty hall of Death.

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image via Wikipedia

 

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doctor and her patient (Lillian)


Nursing Home – A Haiku Chronicle

(Feb.24, 2012)

Perfect storm
Of factors at once
Point one way.

——————————

Reaction
When told him the news –
“That sounds good.”

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Mixed signals:
What’s taking so long?
Don’t want to.

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Checking in,
Piles of paperwork –
New roommate.

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Busyness;
New, discordant sounds.
Upsetting?

——————————

I describe
Because he can’t see –
Almost blind.

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He ate well.
I fed him each bite.
Will the staff?

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But I saw
When I fed him lunch,
A cheek’s tear.

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For Mother
65 years wed –
Lonely bed.

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I did well
Till the long trip home –
Feelings welled.

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photo by Susan Sermoneta (Susan NYC) via Flickr

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* The haiku I write are lines of 3-5-3 syllables instead of 5-7-5.
See Haiku article here for explanation, if needed:

https://thebardonthehill.wordpress.com/2011/08/08/haiku/

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© Dennis Lange and thebardonthehill.wordpress.com, 2012.

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English: Old luggage at Arley railway station ...

Image via Wikipedia

(Why I’m behind; number of followers and hits; etc.)

I’m more than a hundred emails behind this weekend.  That means I’ve not been reading all the posts of blogs I’m subscribed to and I haven’t been answering all the comments on my blog that I’ve wanted to.  (I don’t ever answer all of them, though I read each one and am extremely grateful to get them.)  I’m also behind in accepting the awards I’ve been nominated for and doing several other things I’ve wanted to do. 

So, an explanation might be in order. 

Four months ago, I decided to live in one home 4 days a week and my home with the view above (in the header of the blog) only 3 days a week.  I’ve been literally “living out of a suitcase” during that time.  The 4-day home is my childhood home.  My father is 93 and my mother is 86.  He’s very weak and needs help in virtually all he does.  My mother has some severe back pain even on many occasions when she’s just standing, much less when she’s helping to lift him up from a chair.  So, I went to help. 

This past week was even more stressful since a perfect storm of problems pushed us into what we were avoiding as long as possible – putting my father in a rest home.  I won’t go into all the details, but I was the “leg man” in getting a lot of things done.  Thus, I fell behind on blogging, email, and a number of other issues.  He went into the nursing home on Friday (you’ll see a haiku chronicle of that soon, perhaps today).  That, of course, was stressful to all involved, though it went better than might be expected.

I’ve “moved back” home.  But, I’ll be away two days this week helping my mother find a house in town so she’ll be closer to the nursing home to make visits.  Then, the next week, she’ll be having surgery to implant a device in her back that sends electrical impulses to the brain that will hopefully help alleviate some of her pain.  I’ll be there for the surgery and for several days as she recuperates.

On another note:

I was asked about the number of hits and followers of my blog.  First, I don’t have the number of followers that my stats indicate.  Some of you will know since WordPress did the same to you weeks ago.  WordPress suddenly started listing all my followers on Twitter as followers of my blog.  I get an average of a hit a day from more than 1400 Twitter followers.  Most of them follow to be followed, not to read my blog.  I thus have fewer than 200 blog followers.

I started blogging in May and limped along several months.  Here are some of the factors that helped me to increase my number of blog followers and my hits:
(1) I did the things WordPress suggested to increase subscribers. 
http://en.support.wordpress.com/getting-more-site-traffic/
I skim through a lot of the first part of posts that have just been published under “poetry”.  http://en.wordpress.com/tag/poetry/ 
If I like what I see at all, I click on the blog to read more.  If I like what I read there, I then click “like” and sometimes leave a comment.  Sometimes I will leave a comment with a link to my blog where I’ve written a poem on the same subject.

(2) I have a variety of types of poems and subjects – poems by the great poets, great poems by poets who aren’t well-known, my poems (and a write on a variety of subjects – anything that comes to mind as poem), and my haiku.

(3) The third thing, and I am grateful to all who have done this, is that several other bloggers have put links to my blog on the front page of their blog, leading others to me.  It’s something that I’ve also planned to do for a long time, but I’m waaaay behind.  Again, thanks to all who have done that.

(4) I set up a Twitter account for the express purpose of advertising my blog.  Again, the results aren’t that great, but I’ve had fun with it in other ways, too.  I set up a Facebook account for two reasons – to see the latest pictures of my granddaughters and to advertise my blog.  I have more readership through Facebook than through Twitter.

When Maggie Mendus (   http://maggiemendus.wordpress.com/  ) asked me in a comment about my subscribers and hits, I started to answer there.  But I then thought my fairly long answer might be beneficial to others.  So, I’ve made it a post.

I’ll have a bit more time this week.  Perhaps I’ll get caught up on some of my emails and blog reading.  Maybe I’ll even catch up on some other things later in March.  One thing I’ve tried not to do was slow down on writing poetry.  I’ve had a good month of that.  It seems like a lot of poems come to me when I’m driving.   You’ve seen some of them already and will see more. 

Thanks to all of you who are my faithful reading subscribers and to all who come by and happen to read.  Hope you come by again. 

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image by mattbuck

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English: rain

 

            The Laughter of the Rain

My very soul smiles as I listen to
   The low, mysterious laughter of the rain,
   Poured musically over heart and brain
Till sodden care, soaked with it through and through,
Sinks; and, with wings wet with it as with dew,
   My spirit flutters up, with every stain
   Rinsed from its plumage, and as white again
As when the old laugh of the rain was new,
   Then laugh on, happy Rain! laugh louder yet! –
Laugh out in torrent-bursts of watery mirth;
   Unlock thy lips of purple cloud, and let
Thy liquid merriment baptize the earth,
   And wash the sad face of the world, and set
   The universe to music dripping-wet!

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image via Wikipedia

 

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A stack of Money/Picture of money (The followi...


                 Is It Love We Have?

                      (a song poem)

My darling, my darling, it’s no longer funny.
Is it love we have, or is it money?
If there were no dollars, if there were no gold,
Would you be mine to have and hold?
Would you and I forever be
Because you are you and I am me?

     Chorus:
     The love we have, is it there because
     I give gifts like a Santa Claus?
     Am I your sweetest William still?
     Or have I become just a Dollar Bill?

Is it love we have, or is it money?
Is it Sugar Daddy or purest honey?
If the dollar goes down like the British pound,
Will you still love me and stay around?
Will you and I forever be
Because you are you and I am me?

     The love we have, is it there because
     I give gifts like a Santa Claus?
     Am I your sweetest William still?
     Or have I become just a Dollar Bill?

Thought I’d check if you need a check
To hold me tight and hug my neck.
My credit’s good if you need my card,
But if you don’t get it, will I be barred?
Will you and I forever be
Because you are you and I am me?

     The love we have, is it there because
     I give gifts like a Santa Claus?
     Am I your sweetest William still?
     Or have I become just a Dollar Bill?

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image via Wikipedia

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© Dennis Lange and thebardonthehill.wordpress.com, 2012.

 

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English: a love heart in water

Love me little, love long,
Is the burden of my song:
Love that is too hot and strong
   Burneth soon to waste.
I am with little well content,
And a little from thee sent
Is enough, with true intent,
   To be steadfast friend.
Love me little, love me long,
Is the burden of my song.

Say thou lov’st me while thou live,
I to thee my love will give,
Never dreaming to deceive
   While that life endures:
Nay, and after death in sooth,
I to thee will keep my truth,
As now when in my May of youth,
   This my love assures.
Love me little, love me long,
Is the burden of my song.

Constant love is moderate ever,
And it will through life persever,
Give to me that with true endeavor,
   I will it restore:
A suit of durance let it be,
For all weathers, that for me,
For the land or for the sea,
   Lasting evermore.
Love me little, love me long,
Is the burden of my song.

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photo by seyed mustafa zamani through Wikipedia

 

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Slavery Haiku

Enslaved blacks
To grow white cotton
For the gold.

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Less human?
How could masters miss
All those tears?

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Did owners
Do unto others
What they’d want?

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Can one pray
And his words be heard
As he preys?

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Darwin thought
Blacks inferior –
Not evolved.

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Thus, we see
Christ’s teachings – against;
Science – for.

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Caption of the image reads, “Aboard an Arab slave ship intercepted by the
Royal Navy, 1869” –  through Wikipedia

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* The haiku I write are lines of 3-5-3 syllables instead of 5-7-5.
See Haiku article here for explanation, if needed:

https://thebardonthehill.wordpress.com/2011/08/08/haiku/

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© Dennis Lange and thebardonthehill.wordpress.com, 2012.

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The islet of Nisida as viewed from Parco Virgi...

 
                         Stanzas

(written in dejection near Naples)

I

The sun is warm, the sky is clear,
      The waves are dancing fast and bright;
   Blue isles and snowy mountains wear
      The purple noon’s transparent might;
      The breath of the moist earth is light
   Around its unexpanded buds;
      Like many a voice of one delight,
   The winds, the birds, the ocean floods,
The City’s voice itself, is soft like Solitude’s.

II

I see the Deep’s untrampled floor
      With green and purple sea-weeds strown;
   I see the waves upon the shore,
      Like light dissolved, in star-showers thrown.
      I sit upon the sands alone.
   The lightning of the noontide ocean
      Is flashing round me, and a tone
   Arises from its measured motion, –
How sweet, did any heart now share in my emotion!

III

Alas! I have nor hope nor health,
      Nor peace within nor calm around;
   Nor that content, surpassing wealth,
      The sage in meditation found,
      And walked with inward glory crowned;
   Nor fame nor power nor love nor leisure.
      Others I see whom these surround –
   Smiling they live, and call life pleasure, –
To me that cup has been dealt in another measure.

IV

Yet now despair itself is mild,
      Even as the winds and waters are;
   I could lie down like a tired child,
      And weep away the life of care
      Which I have borne and yet must bear, –
   Till death like sleep might steal on me,
      And I might feel in the warm air
   My cheek grow cold, and hear the sea
Breathe o’er my dying brain its last monotony.

V

Some might lament that I were cold,
      As I when this sweet day is gone,
   Which my lost heart, too soon grown old,
      Insults with this untimely moan.
      They might lament – for I am one
   Whom men love not, and yet regret;
      Unlike this day, which, when the sun
   Shall on its stainless glory set,
Will linger, though enjoyed, like joy in memory set.

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photo by Gennaro Visciano via Flickr

 

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Sonnet 11 – The Paradox of the Selfish

The selfish soul can sometimes selfless be,
If selflessness attains his selfish goal,
And feeds the center of his galaxy,
The sun that rises there that is the whole.

A paradox, the selfish is in this –
Fools the unsuspecting casual friend,
Who thinks the two can co-exist in bliss,
That selflessness is the abiding trend.

But, like a plate filled by the finicky
Whose purpose is to earn a piece of pie,
The loved takes up the whole, with two or three
Peas for the prize, since selfishness is sly.

   The selfish may partake of bitter pill
   And practice selflessness to gain his will.

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© Dennis Lange and thebardonthehill.wordpress.com, 2012.

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