Friday, January 15, 2010

A Love Song, a poem by William Carlos Williams.

Post 408 - William Carlos Williams was born in Rutherford, New Jersey, in 1883. He began writing poetry in high school, where he decided to become both a writer and a doctor. He received his M.D. from the University of Pennsylvania in 1906 and returned to Rutherford, where he sustained a medical practice as a pediatrician and general practitioner throughout his life. Williams "worked harder at being a writer than he did at being a physician," and during his long lifetime, he excelled at both. He had a prolific career as a poet, novelist, essayist, and playwright.
Williams's health began to decline after a heart attack in 1948 followed by a series of strokes. However, he continued writing up until his death in New Jersey in 1963. In May 1963 he was posthumously awarded the Pulitzer Prize for Pictures from Brueghel and Other Poems (1962) and the Gold Medal for Poetry of the National Institute of Arts and Letters. The Poetry Society of America continues to honor William Carlos Williams by presenting an annual award in his name for the best book of poetry published by a small, non-profit or university press.

Williams believed that “The better work men do is always done under stress and at great personal cost.”

A Love Song by William Carlos Williams.

What have I to say to you
When we shall meet?
Yet -
I lie here thinking of you.

The stain of love
Is upon the world.
Yellow, yellow, yellow,
It eats into the leaves,
Smears with saffron
The horned branches that lean
Against a smooth purple sky.

There is no light—
Only a honey-thick stain
That drips from leaf to leaf
And limb to limb
Spoiling the colours
Of the whole world.

I am alone.
The weight of love
Has buoyed me up
Till my head
Knocks against the sky.

See me!
My hair is dripping with nectar -
Starlings carry it
On their black wings.
See, at last
My arms and my hands
Are lying idle.

How can I tell
If I shall ever love you again
As I do now?

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