March 20, 2012

A Summer Afternoon

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--Description: 20th C, Riley J.W., Nature, Seasons--


A languid atmosphere, a lazy breeze,
With labored respiration, moves the wheat
From distant reaches, till the golden seas
Break in crisp whispers at my feet.

My book, neglected of an idle mind,
Hides for a moment from the eyes of men;
Or lightly opened by a critic wind,
Affrightedly reviews itself again.

Off through the haze that dances in the shine
The warm sun showers in the open glade,
The forest lies, a silhouette design
Dimmed through and through with shade.

A dreamy day; and tranquilly I lie
At anchor from all storms of mental strain;
With absent vision, gazing at the sky,
"Like one that hears it rain."

The Katydid, so boisterous last night,
Clinging, inverted, in uneasy poise,
Beneath a wheat-blade, has forgotten quite
If "Katy DID or DIDN'T" make a noise.

The twitter, sometimes, of a wayward bird
That checks the song abruptly at the sound,
And mildly, chiding echoes that have stirred,
Sink into silence, all the more profound.

And drowsily I hear the plaintive strain
Of some poor dove . . . Why, I can scarcely keep
My heavy eyelids--there it is again--
"Coo-coo!"--I mustn't--"Coo-coo!"--fall asleep!


James Whitcomb Riley

--Did You Know: (October 7, 1849 – July 22, 1916) James Whitcomb Riley was an American writer and poet. Known as the Hoosier Poet, National Poet,[1] and the Children's Poet,[2] he started his career in 1875 writing newspaper verse in Indiana dialect for the Indianapolis Journal. His verse tended to be humorous or sentimental, and of the approximately one thousand poems that Riley published, over half are in dialect. Claiming that "simple sentiments that come direct from the heart"[3] were the reason for his success, Riley vended verse about ordinary topics that were "heart high."[4] Riley was a bestselling author during the early 1900s and earned a steady income from royalties; he also traveled and gave public readings of his poetry. Read more at: James Whitcomb Riley

--Word of the Day: selcouth \SEL-kooth\, adjective:
Strange; uncommon.
Example:
Its English is not more quaint than that of De Brunne himself; it contains no names more selcouth than he himself is in the custom of introducing…
-- Sir Walter Scott, The Poetical Works of Sir Walter Scott

--Quote of the Day:
The best bridge between despair and hope is a good night's sleep.
- E. Joseph Cossman

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Posted by V. Mahfood
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