Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Tuesday Poem - Winter Fields

O for a pleasant book to cheat the sway
Of winter - where rich mirth with hearty laugh
Listens and rubs his legs on corner seat
For fields are mire and sludge - and badly off
Are those who on their pudgy paths delay
There striding shepherd seeking driest way
Fearing nights wetshod feet and hacking cough
That keeps him waken till the peep of day
Goes shouldering onward and with ready hook
Progs oft to ford the sloughs that nearly meet
Accross the lands - croodling and thin to view
His loath dog follows - stops and quakes and looks
For better roads - til whistled to pursue
Then on with frequent jump he hirkles through

John Clare, 1793 - 1864

I love the unfamiliar words in this; progs, croodling, hirkles. It's been raining most of today and I've been to the hairdresser and bits of my hair now look as though they've fallen in cherry syrup. I've been reading Moonwalking with Einstein, The Art and Science of Remembering Everything, by Joshua Foer. It's the right weather to croodle up with a good book. But if you're croodling up to your computer and feel like hurtling into more poetry, check out the Tuesday Poem blog - an intriguing poem by Lee Posna, curated this week by Sarah Jane Barnett.
Samuel Freeman, John Clare


Anonymous said...

Clare spent a week’s wages on a handsome blank-paper book and began copying his poems into it.
Does this ring a bell?

Cattyrox said...

You must have seen my collection of blank books! Hello Mothership!

albert said...

beautiful poem i consider a fantastic write kisses

Helen McKinlay said...

What marvellous words this poem is full of...it makes it quite modern. Do you think he realised the significance of his language then or was it just an everyday thing to hurkle and prog. Delicious!