Tuesday, 3 March 2009

Poems and Prayers (for the domestically inclined)

My Lady's Chamber, Frontispiece to
My Lady's Chamber, Frontispiece to "The House Beautiful"


Peace between neighbours,

Peace between kindred,

Peace between lovers,
In the love of the King of life.

Peace between person and person
Peace between wife and husband,
Peace between woman and children,
The peace of Christ above all peace.
From Carmina Gadelica


by Marylin Nelson

Thank you for these tiny
particles of ocean salt,
pearl-necklace viruses,
winged protozoans:
for the infinite,
intricate shapes
of submicroscopic
living things.
For algae spores
and fungus spores,
bonded by vital
mutual genetic cooperation,
spreading their
inseparable lives
from equator to pole.
My hand, my arm,
make sweeping circles.
Dust climbs the ladder of light.
For this infernal, endless chore,
for these eternal seeds of rain:
Thank you. For dust.

On the Disadvantages of Central Heating

by Amy Clampitt

cold nights on the farm, a sock-shod
stove-warmed flatiron slid under
the covers, mornings a damascene-
sealed bizarrerie of fernwork
decades ago now

waking in northwest London, tea
brought up steaming, a Peak Frean
biscuit alongside to be nibbled
as blue gas leaps up singing
decades ago now

damp sheets in Dorset, fog-hung
habitat of bronchitis, of long
hot soaks in the bathtub, of nothing
quite drying out till next summer:
delicious to think of

hassocks pulled in close, toasting-
forks held to coal-glow, strong-minded
small boys and big eager sheepdogs
muscling in on bookish profundities
now quite forgotten

the farmhouse long sold, old friends
dead or lost track of, what's salvaged
is this vivid diminuendo, unfogged
by mere affect, the perishing residue
of pure sensation

Prayer for Home Blessing

By Dolores Curran
Bless our home, and make it fit for Thee, Oh God. Send your Holy Spirit into each nook and cranny. Let the walls resound with love and laughter. Let your birds sing on your trees outside and your lilies flourish in your gardens. Bless our kitchen and fill it with the warmth of shared bread. Bless our family room and fill it with loving communication. Bless our bedrooms and fill them with restful slumber . Bless each room and each of us, dear God, and make yourself at home with us.


Gumbo Lily said...

I have never read such a poem about dust. Clever to be sure.


Islandsparrow said...

Love your poems especially "Prayer for Home Blessing" - beautiful!

Zillah said...

They're lovely, DD. I was reading something from Carmina Gadelica last night and it feels very harmonious to read another.

I like the Dust one too!

But, why don't I have a lady's chamber like that? I could just do with a little elegant peace and quite!


Scriptor Senex said...

What brilliant English - I loved - "a sock-shod
stove-warmed flatiron slid under
the covers, mornings a damascene-
sealed bizarrerie of fernwork
decades ago now"

Anonymous said...

Lol making dust (and no central heating) sound romantic...I've heard it all now! ;) But they are very well written, I could never come up with poetry like that.

The first prayer/poem is simply beautiful.

Thanks for sharing these, I really enjoyed them.


Dulce Domum said...

Hi Jody
Yes, the dust poem is very clever. It make a chore seem magical and beautiful. I'm glad you liked the "only Men Aloud" clip. It always makes me smile!

Hi Kathie
Yes, it's beautiful isn't it. I'm glad you liked it too.

Hi Zillah
Isn't it funny you're reading the Carmina Gadelica too?

When you gets your lady's chamber, may I come and admire your De Morgan tiles and Morris textiles?

Hi Scrip
I'm glad you picked up on the lang. in the central heating poem. I love it, especially that evocative alliteration in the first few lines.

Hi Sarah
What I like about the dust and central heating poem is that they make annoyances sound beautiful (in their own way). Isn't there a song to that effect? LOL!

I'm glad you like the first one. Sometimes the simple prayers are the best.

Nan said...

It's those damp sheets that would kill me. :<)

Sara said...

Wow...I love these. And I'll never view dusting the same again. Isn't it marvelous what lovely design exists in those tiny sub-particles we cannot see! But God designed them, and he knows. And we shouldn't be surprised at their odd beauty.

Angela said...

Great poems - thanks!!

Dulce Domum said...

Hi Nan
It seemed that everybody had a touch of rhuematism back then...no wonder. I have an American great Aunt (a GI Bride) she left the UK when she was 17, with her soldier, and went to live in Queens. She then settled in Rhode Island. She's in her 80s now, and when my mum asked her what she remembered most about living in England she said "being warm at the front and cold at the back"...coal fires only and no central heating.

Hi Sara
Welcome to my blog. You're so right, "the earth is cramm'd with heaven" or so the poem goes. I'm quite interested in how maths applies to art; the golden mean, fibonnaci(sp?) numbers and so on. There's a beauty and order in God's design which we can only begin to grasp.

Hi Angela
I'm glad you enjoyed them.

Zillah said...

Actually, I've been enjoying many excerpts from Carmina Gadelica in my new (well, new to me, published in the 1920s) book on Scots cookery, rather than from the thing its self. Thanks go to you for the bookseller recommendation!

Laura A said...

I enjoyed these. They help the everyday rise to the level of art.