De Engelse dichter, schrijver en essayist James Leigh Hunt werd geboren op 19 oktober 1784 in Southgate, Middlesex. Zie ook mijn blog van 19 oktober 2006 en ook mijn blog van 19 oktober 2007 en ook mijn blog van 19 oktober 2008.
An Angel in the House
How sweet it were, if without feeble fright,
Or dying of the dreadful beauteous sight,
An angel came to us, and we could bear
To see him issue from the silent air
At evening in our room, and bend on ours
His divine eyes, and bring us from his bowers
News of dear friends, and children who have never
Been dead indeed,--as we shall know forever.
Alas! we think not what we daily see
About our hearths,--angels that are to be,
Or may be if they will, and we prepare
Their souls and ours to meet in happy air;--
A child, a friend, a wife whose soft heart sings
In unison with ours, breeding its future wings.
It flows through old hushed Egypt and its sands,
Like some grave mighty thought threading a dream,
And times and things, as in that vision, seem
Keeping along it their eternal stands,--
Caves, pillars, pyramids, the shepherd bands
That roamed through the young world, the glory extreme
Of high Sesostris, and that southern beam,
The laughing queen that caught the world's great hands.
Then comes a mightier silence, stern and strong,
As of a world left empty of its throng,
And the void weighs on us; and then we wake,
And hear the fruitful stream lapsing along
'Twixt villages, and think how we shall take
Our own calm journey on for human sake.
Leigh Hunt (19 oktober 1784 28 augustus 1859)
De Australische dichter Adam Lindsay Gordon werd geboren op 19 oktober 1833 op de Azoren. Zie ook mijn blog van 19 oktober 2008.
With short, sharp violent lights made vivid,
To the southward far as the sight can roam,
Only the swirl of the surges livid,
The seas that climb and the surfs that comb,
Only the crag and the cliff to nor'ward,
And rocks receding, and reefs flung forward,
And waifs wreck'd seaward and wasted shoreward
On shallows sheeted with flaming foam.
A grim grey coast and a seaboard ghastly,
And shores trod seldom by feet of men --
Where the batter'd hull and the broken mast lie
They have lain embedded these long years ten.
Love! when we wander'd here together,
Hand in hand through the sparkling weather,
From the heights and hollows of fern and heather,
God surely loved us a little then.
Then skies were fairer and shores were firmer --
The blue sea over the bright sand roll'd;
Babble and prattle, and ripple and murmur,
Sheen of silver and glamour of gold --
And the sunset bath'd in the gulf to lend her
A garland of pinks and of purples tender,
A tinge of the sun-god's rosy splendour,
A tithe of his glories manifold.
Man's works are craven, cunning, and skillful
On earth where his tabernacles are;
But the sea is wanton, the sea is wilful,
And who shall mend her and who shall mar?
Shall we carve success or record disaster
On her bosom of heaving alabaster?
Will her purple pulse beat fainter or faster
For fallen sparrow or fallen star?
I would that with sleepy soft embraces
The sea would fold me -- would find me rest
In luminous shades of her secret places,
In depths where her marvels are manifest,
So the earth beneath her should not discover
My hidden couch -- nor the heaven above her --
As a strong love shielding a weary lover,
I would have her shield me with shining breast.
When light in the realms of space lay hidden,
When life was yet in the womb of time,
Ere flesh was fettered to fruits forbidden,
And souls were wedded to care and crime,
Was the course foreshaped for the future spirit --
A burden of folly, a void of merit --
That would fain the wisdom of stars inherit,
And cannot fathom the seas sublime?
Under the sea or the soil (what matter?
The sea and the soil are under the sun),
As in the former days in the latter
The sleeping or waking is known of none,
Surely the sleeper shall not awaken
To griefs forgotten or joys forsaken,
For the price of all things given and taken,
The sum of all things done and undone.
Shall we count offences or coin excuses,
Or weigh with scales the soul of a man,
Whom a strong hand binds and a sure hand looses,
Whose light is a spark and his life a span?
The seed he sowed or the soil he cumber'd,
The time he served or the space he slumber'd,
Will it profit a man when his days are number'd,
Or his deeds since the days of his life began?
One, glad because of the light, saith, "Shall not
The righteous judges of all the earth do right,
For behold the sparrows on the house-tops fall not
Save as seemeth to Him good in His sight?"
And this man's joy shall have no abiding
Through lights departing and lives dividing,
He is soon as one in the darkness hiding,
One loving darkness rather than light.
A little season of love and laughter,
Of light and life, and pleasure and pain,
And a horror of outer darkness after,
And dust returneth to dust again;
Then the lesser life shall be as the greater,
And the lover of light shall join the hater,
And the one thing cometh sooner or later,
And no one knoweth the loss or gain.
Love of my life! we had lights in season --
Hard to part with, harder to keep --
We had strength to labour and souls to reason,
And seed to scatter and fruits to reap.
Though time estranges and fate disperses,
We have had our loves and loving mercies.
Though the gifts of the light in the end are curses,
Yet bides the gift of darkness -- sleep!
See! girt with tempest and wing'd with thunder,
And clad with lightning and shod with sleet,
The strong winds treading the swift waves sunder
The flying rollers with frothy feet.
One gleam like a bloodshot swordblade swims on
The skyline, staining the green gulf crimson
A death stroke fiercely dealt by a dim sun
That strikes through his stormy winding sheet.
Oh, brave white horses! you gather and gallop,
The storm sprite loosens the gusty reins;
Now the stoutest ship were the frailest shallop
In your hollow backs, or your high arch'd manes.
I would ride as never a man has ridden
In your sleepy swirling surges hidden,
To gulfs foreshadow'd, through straits forbidden,
Where no light wearies and no love wanes.
Adam Lindsay Gordon (19 oktober 1833 24 juni 1870)
De Guatemalteekse schrijver Miguel Ángel Asturias werd geboren op 19 oktober 1899 in Guatemala-Stad. Zie ook mijn blog van 19 oktober 2006. Zie ook mijn blog van 19 oktober 2008.
Punishment of Profundities (fragment)
Woodlands and abandoned cities burned
on the bank of rivers that roasted
stones and embankments,
and teeth of buttery ash
like the distance that the golden-smoke azuacan
brings on its wings from southern lands.
Butterflies of turpentine
flew from the trunks of the pines.
Cataracts of orchid sweat
rained from the arms of the ceiba trees.
Fire dust fell from the dry oaks,
boiling balsam from the liquidambars
and to the perfume of tamarinds ablaze
was joined that of the cacao groves, a scent of chocolate,
amid the little bone cracks of the sapodillas ,
the rubber trees twisted in elastic columns,
the chicle trees dripping with milky hairs,
and the crackling conocastes ,
red blood of uprooted foliage,
and the sleeping white oaks ,
and the fleshy mahoganies,
already butter from the touch of a constellation
that lost a foot in the conflagration of the sky
and now walked its leg of fire
in the conflagration of the land.
Whales gone astray in tropical seas,
phosphorescent, torrid flying seas,
playing vaqueros, they hurled jets of water
to lasso the tiger of the conflagration,
the tiger of squeaking rubies,
who recovered his comet-gone-mad ferocity
as he fell on the crystal hoop straps
of the blue vaqueros,
liquid lariats that held him,
paralyzed with surprise,
long enough to slow his escape,
his flight from the water-made-steam,
while the corsairs, floating islands with tiny eyes,
managed to rope him with new and more powerful
jets of water, slip-knot rings,
whose loops the tiger of squeaking rubies
pulled up among flames and stars,
toward the constellation of the mirage,
the one that lost its foot, the constellation of distance,
and toward the army of blue lakes
parapeted in the mouths of the higher volcanoes,
lakes that before falling into fragments -
conquered, evaporated -
and, coiled on the tiger of rubies, galloped with him,
transformed into serpents of turquoise flames.
The earth was subjected
to a punishment of profundities.
After the conflagration, the invisible rains,
the soil overturned, the hurricane of mud,
the razors of the sun,
the chichicaste nettle in the living flesh...
a punishment of profundities
for having made room
for the first barbarian, not the last,
for the first human beast,
for the first executioner
in my country forged of honey.
Vertaald door Robert W. Lebling
Miguel Ángel Asturias (19 oktober 1899 9 juni 1974)
19-10-2009 om 20:43
geschreven door Romenu