May 3, 2011

The Exposed Nest

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--Description: 20th C, Frost R., Humanity, Nature, Seasons--
You were forever finding some new play.
So when I saw you down on hands and knees
In the meadow, busy with the new-cut hay,
Trying, I thought, to set it up on end,
I went to show you how to make it stay,
If that was your idea, against the breeze,
And, if you asked me, even help pretend
To make it root again and grow afresh.
But 'twas no make-believe with you today,
Nor was the grass itself your real concern,
Though I found your hand full of wilted fern,
Steel-bright June-grass, and blackening heads of clovers.
'Twas a nest full of young birds on the ground
The cutter-bar had just gone champing over
(Miraculously without tasking flesh)
And left defenseless to the heat and light.
You wanted to restore them to their right
Of something interposed between their sight
And too much world at once--could means be found.
The way the nest-full every time we stirred
Stood up to us as to a mother-bird
Whose coming home has been too long deferred,
Made me ask would the mother-bird return
And care for them in such a change of scene
And might our meddling make her more afraid.
That was a thing we could not wait to learn.
We saw the risk we took in doing good,
But dared not spare to do the best we could
Though harm should come of it; so built the screen
You had begun, and gave them back their shade.
All this to prove we cared. Why is there then
No more to tell? We turned to other things.
I haven't any memory--have you?--
Of ever coming to the place again
To see if the birds lived the first night through,
And so at last to learn to use their wings.

Robert Frost

--Did You Know: (March 26, 1874 – January 29, 1963) Frost was an American poet. He is highly regarded for his realistic depictions of rural life and his command of American colloquial speech. His work frequently employed settings from rural life in New England in the early twentieth century, using them to examine complex social and philosophical themes. A popular and often-quoted poet, Frost was honored frequently during his lifetime, receiving four Pulitzer Prizes for Poetry. Robert Frost was born in San Francisco, California to journalist William Prescott Frost, Jr., and Isabelle Moodie. His mother was of Scottish descent, and his father descended from Nicholas Frost of Tiverton, Devon, England, who had sailed to New Hampshire in 1634 on the Wolfrana. Frost's father was a teacher and later an editor of the San Francisco Evening Bulletin. After his father's death on May 5, 1885, in due time the family moved across the country to Lawrence, Massachusetts under the patronage of (Robert's grandfather) William Frost, Sr., who was an overseer at a New England mill. Frost graduated from Lawrence High School in 1892. Frost's mother joined the Swedenborgian church and had him baptized in it, but he left it as an adult. Despite his later association with rural life, Frost grew up in the city, and published his first poem in his high school's magazine. Read more at: Robert Frost

--Poetry Terminology: Abecedarian Poem
Type of acrostic where each line or verse begins with a successive letter of the alphabet; sometimes known as an alphabet poem.

--Word of the Day: apposite \AP-uh-zit\, adjective:
Being of striking appropriateness and relevance; very applicable; apt.
Example:
As we survey Jewish history as a whole from the vantage point of the late twentieth century, Judah Halevi's phrase "prisoner of hope" seems entirely apposite. The prisoner of hope is sustained and encouraged by his hope, even as he is confined by it.
-Jane S. Gerber (Editor), The Illustrated History of the Jewish People

--Quote of the Day: The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy.
-Martin Luther King, Jr.

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Posted by V. Mahfood

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4 comments:

Dorothy Rimson on January 25, 2010 at 11:58 PM said...

Let this delightful poem charm your day!----Lovely

V. Mahfood on January 26, 2010 at 1:58 PM said...

Thank you..it was so tender and sweet, and typical of a day in the country.

Small Footprints on May 4, 2011 at 2:10 PM said...

Wow ... just wonderful. He speaks perfectly to human caring, and perhaps interference, where nature is concerned. I believe I've lived that moment! Thanks, as always, for sharing this moment of deliciousness with us!

V. Mahfood on May 4, 2011 at 7:46 PM said...

I love his earthy, caring tone and a touch of romance thrown in with this one! Glad you enjoyed it.

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