Posts Tagged ‘Gerard Manley Hopkins’

“Heart, you round me right”

December 16, 2010 5 comments

J.M. Cameron, A Sibyl; 1870; WikiCmns


Fellow blogger Cross-ties’ reflection on my reflection on the relationship between poetry and magic got me thinking once more on the topic; he referenced Gerard Manley Hopkins’ poem, “Spelt from Sibyls Leaves,” certainly one of the finest poems from the Victorian era.  I offer the poem below, full as it is with Hopkins’ quirks and epiphanies:


32. Spelt from Sibyl’s Leaves


EARNEST, earthless, equal, attuneable, ‘ vaulty, voluminous, … stupendous

Evening strains to be tíme’s vást, ‘ womb-of-all, home-of-all, hearse-of-all night.

Her fond yellow hornlight wound to the west, ‘ her wild hollow hoarlight hung to the height

Waste; her earliest stars, earl-stars, ‘ stárs principal, overbend us,

Fíre-féaturing heaven. For earth ‘ her being has unbound, her dapple is at an end, as-         5

tray or aswarm, all throughther, in throngs; ‘ self ín self steedèd and páshed—qúite

Disremembering, dísmémbering ‘ áll now. Heart, you round me right

With: Óur évening is over us; óur night ‘ whélms, whélms, ánd will end us.

Only the beak-leaved boughs dragonish ‘ damask the tool-smooth bleak light; black,

Ever so black on it. Óur tale, O óur oracle! ‘ Lét life, wáned, ah lét life wind         10

Off hér once skéined stained véined variety ‘ upon, áll on twó spools; párt, pen, páck

Now her áll in twó flocks, twó folds—black, white; ‘ right, wrong; reckon but, reck but, mind

But thése two; wáre of a wórld where bút these ‘ twó tell, each off the óther; of a rack

Where, selfwrung, selfstrung, sheathe- and shelterless, ‘ thóughts agaínst thoughts ín groans grínd.


Gerard Manley Hopkins (1844-1889)

text source:

P.S. Ms. Aubrey also has some insights on the period.


The Windhover

September 29, 2010 1 comment


The Windhover

 To Christ our Lord

 I CAUGHT this morning morning’s minion, king-

    dom of daylight’s dauphin, dapple-dawn-drawn Falcon, in his riding

    Of the rolling level underneath him steady air, and striding

High there, how he rung upon the rein of a wimpling wing

In his ecstasy! then off, off forth on swing,                                                      5

    As a skate’s heel sweeps smooth on a bow-bend: the hurl and gliding

  Rebuffed the big wind. My heart in hiding

Stirred for a bird,—the achieve of; the mastery of the thing!


Brute beauty and valour and act, oh, air, pride, plume, here

    Buckle! AND the fire that breaks from thee then, a billion                     10

Times told lovelier, more dangerous, O my chevalier!


    No wonder of it: shéer plód makes plough down sillion

Shine, and blue-bleak embers, ah my dear,

    Fall, gall themselves, and gash gold-vermillion.

                                                                                         —Gerard Manley Hopkins