Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Smooth-talking Irishman

A Poet To His Beloved

I BRING you with reverent hands
The books of my numberless dreams,
White woman that passion has worn
As the tide wears the dove-grey sands,
And with heart more old than the horn
That is brimmed from the pale fire of time:
White woman with numberless dreams,
I bring you my passionate rhyme.

William Butler Yeats

Steve here: Yeats is another of my all-time favorite poets. He had that distinctly Irish gift for the flow of language, and wrote on every subject from love and death to the politics of his day.

I don't write poetry myself. I just love the use of the language, and the occasional metaphor that strikes a deep note on the dark bells of the soul.

Seems to me, one of the best things we can do as writers is to read plenty of poems, then ignore them. There's a lot of poetic influence in writers like James Lee Burke, Walter Mosely, Dennis Lehane and Michael Connelly. None of them ever let the language get in the way of the story, though...


Charles Gramlich said...

I love poetical writing. Burke is a personal favorite. Koontz can put some fine lines together on occassion. Robert E. Howard's fantasy is full of poetry. As for Irish poets, Dylan Thomas is the guy who saved poetry for me when I discovered him.

Susan Miller said...

Yep, Yeats is a player.

I do love when words sound like music, and a poet can summon an orchestra it seems.

I envy their ability to have such impact with so few words.