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Tuesday, 2 March 2010

Charlotte Mew: A Quoi Bon Dire


Seventeen years ago you said
Something that sounded like Good-bye;
And everybody thinks that you are dead,
But I.

So I, as I grow stiff and cold
To this and that say Good-bye too;
And everybody sees that I am old
But you.

And one fine morning in a sunny lane
Some boy and girl will meet and kiss and swear
That nobody can love their way again
While over there
You will have smiled, I shall have tossed your hair.

A Quoi Bon Dire: Charlotte Mew, from The Farmer's Bride, 1916

Sunday morning (23.11.09): photo by Tom Raworth, 2009
East morning (19.10.09): photo by Tom Raworth, 2009


gamefaced said...



Yes, well said, "wow" -- thanks for all such things Tom -- continuing on w/ words and views from over there ("across the pond"), TR's photos bringing sense of life to the morning here. And the thoughts on Hardy keep arriving, happily.

TC said...

Me too wow on this.

Charlotte M was a strange, brilliant and complicated person who had a difficult and variegated life and a truly horrible death. She was said to be "chastely lesbian," carried many a secret torch, but evidently lit no flames. Hardy called her the best woman poet of her day and helped her obtain a Civil List pension. In a deep depression at the end, after her sister's death, she drank Lysol.


to that wow I now gasp, "WHOA"

aditya said...

Wow ! What an exquisite piece of poem. I said wow ! the moment the poem finished .. And was not surprised to see the wows in here.

A horrible end, nevertheless.