Sunday, June 25, 2017

June / Margaret Deland


Upon the breast of smiling June
     Roses and lilies lie,
And round her yet is faint perfume
     Of violets, just gone by;

Green is her gown, with 'broidery
     Of blossoming meadow grass,
That ripples like a flowing sea
     When winds and shadows pass.

Her breast is belted by the blue
     Of succory, like the sky,
And purple heart's-ease clasp her too,
     And larkspur growing high;

Laced is her bodice green with vines,
     And dew the sun has kissed,
Jewels her scarf that faintly shines,
     In folds of morning mist!

The buttercups are fringes fair
     Around her small white feet,
And on the radiance of her hair
     Fall cherry-blossoms sweet;

The dark laburnum's chains of gold
     She twists about her throat:
Perched on her shoulder, blithe and bold,
     The brown thrush sounds his note!

And blue of the far dappled sky
     That shows at warm, still noon,
Shines in her softly smiling eye.
     Oh! who's so sweet as June ?

Margaret Deland (1857-1945)
from The Old Garden, and other verses, 1889

[Poem is in the public domain in Canada, the United States, and the European Union]

Margaret Deland biography

Saturday, June 24, 2017

Spring Day / Marion Strobel

Spring Day

I felt a fool
When you caught me smiling at myself
In the oval mirror;
But later in the day
A six-legged bug,      
Taking ten minutes to climb across
The muscles of my arm,
Convinced me of my greatness.

Marion Strobel (1895-1967)
from Poetry, March 1920

[Poem is in the public domain in Canada and the United States]

Marion Strobel biography

Sunday, June 18, 2017

Only a Dad / Edgar Guest

Only a Dad

Only a dad, with a tired face,
Coming home from the daily race,
Bringing little of gold or fame,
To show how well he has played the game,
But glad in his heart that his own rejoice
To see him come, and to hear his voice.

Only a dad, with a brood of four,
One of ten million men or more.
Plodding along in the daily strife,
Bearing the whips and the scorns of life,
With never a whimper of pain or hate,
For the sake of those who at home await.

Only a dad, neither rich nor proud,
Merely one of the surging crowd
Toiling, striving from day to day,
Facing whatever may come his way,
Silent, whenever the harsh condemn,
And bearing it all for the love of them.

Only a dad, but he gives his all
To smooth the way for his children small,
Doing, with courage stern and grim,
The deeds that his father did for him.
This is the line that for him I pen,
Only a dad, but the best of men.

Edgar Guest (1881-1959)
from A Heap o' Livin', 1916

[Poem is in the public domain in Canada and the United States]

Edgar Guest biography

Friday, June 16, 2017

June in the City / John Reed

June in the City

This rock-rimmed Northern land is ringed with bloom;
Each night the warm sky hovers soft and low
Above young strolling lovers — and I know
That on far beaches drives the sea-salt spume.

Oh for a strength of flowering to thrust
Green leaves up through this iron city street!
Brown thrushes in the twilight, and a sweet
Clean wind to sweep the dim stars free from dust!

John Reed (1887-1920)
from Tamberlaine, and other verses, 1917

[Poem is in the public domain in Canada, the United States, and the European Union]

John Reed biography

Sunday, June 11, 2017

Dusk in June / Sara Teasdale

Dusk in June

Evening, and all the birds
In a chorus of shimmering sound
Are easing their hearts of joy
For miles around.

The air is blue and sweet,
The few first stars are white,–
Oh let me like the birds
Sing before night.

Sara Teasdale (1884-1933)
from Rivers to the Sea, 1915

[Poem is in the public domain in Canada, the United States, and the European Union]

Sara Teasdale biography

Saturday, June 10, 2017

June (In Rotten Row) / J. Ashby-Sterry


In Rotten Row, 'tis nice, you know,
To see the tide of Fashion flow!
     Though hopeless cynics carp and croon —
     I do not care one macaroon —
But love to watch the passing show!

You'll find it anything but slow,
To laugh and chaff with those you know;
     And pleasant then to sit at noon,
          In Rotten Row!

When Summer breezes whisper low,
And countless riders come and go;
     Beneath the trees in leafy June,
     I love to sit and muse and moon —
While beauties canter to and fro —
          In Rotten Row!

J. Ashby-Sterry (1836-1917)
from The Lazy Minstrel, 1886

[Poem is in the public domain worldwide]

J. Ashby-Sterry biography

Sunday, June 4, 2017

A Song for Spring / F.S. Flint

A Song for Spring 

Out of the verdure of my heart
Has broken the bloom.

The Spring has come from her house of gloom,
In her robes of green with the purfled hem
Of all the flowers, and on her hair
Of all the flowers a diadem.
She has wrought with ardour and dainty craft
Blossom of apple, blossom of pear,–
With warp of the moon and weft of the sun
She has spun the flowers,
And dipped them every one
In vats of radiant delicate dye,–
She has spun in the loom of earth and sky,
With a spindle of rain, to the song of the wind.

I have seen her with her sheaf pass by
And scatter my garden with narcissi;
I have seen her fling her daffodils
In a burning cirque about the hills;
And as I lay and watched she stooped
And blew with her breath the buds apart
That hid in the verdure of my heart.

I think of all the covered roots;
I think of the boughs and the leaves on them;
I think of the day when first she came
With a song along the alley of laurels,
A girl with hair of amber flame,
Who woke the blossom in my heart.

F.S. Flint (1885-1960)
from In the Net of the Stars, 1909

[Poem is in the public domain in Canada and the United States]

Saturday, June 3, 2017

A Vision of June / Alexander Posey

A Vision of June

At last, my white Narcissus is in bloom;
     Each blossom sheds a wondrous fragrance. Lo!
     From over bleak December's waste of snow,
In summer garments, lightly thro' the gloom,
Comes June to claim the truant in my room;
     With her the airs of sunny meadows come,
     And in the apple boughs I hear the hum
Of bees; in all the valleys, brooks resume,
'Twixt greening banks, their mumurous melody;
The sunlight bursts in splendor in the blue,
And soon the narrow walls confining me
Recede into the distance from my view;
     My spirit in the summer's largeness grows,
     And every thorn is hidden by the rose.

Alexander Posey (1873-1908)
from Poems, 1910

[Poem is in the public domain worldwide]

Alexander Posey biography

Thursday, June 1, 2017

Penny's Top 20 / May 2017

Penny's Top 20
The most-visited poems on  The Penny Blog in May 2017:

  1.  Rondeau: An April Day, W.M. McKeracher
  2.  April (An April Day), J. Ashby-Sterry
  3.  A May Song, Violet Fane
  4.  Spring Morning, A.E. Housman
  5.  April Madness, Charles Hanson Towne
  6.  Le Sacre du Printemps, W.J. Turner
  7.  April Fool's Day, Will E. Cowles
A little madness in the Spring, Emily Dickinson
  9.  Ode, Richard West

10.  To the Same (Philoclea), Robert Potter

11.  Easter Evening, James Church Alvord
Return of Spring, Pierre de Ronsard
13.  May (A Private View), J. Ashby-Sterry
14.  Mother o' Mine, Rudyard Kipling
15.  With a Copy of Herrick, Edmund Gosse
16.  shanghai, David Rutkowski
17.  Slow Spring, Katharine Tynan
18.  Beneath Apple Boughs, Lee Wilson Dodd
19.  A sweet exhaustion seems to hold, Aubrey de Vere
20.  May, Christina Rossetti

Source: Blogger, "Stats"