Vox Populi

A Public Sphere for Poetry, Politics, and Nature: over 4,000,000 monthly users

Richard Wilbur: Love Calls Us to the Things of This World

    The eyes open to a cry of pulleys,
And spirited from sleep, the astounded soul
Hangs for a moment bodiless and simple
As false dawn.
          Outside the open window
The morning air is all awash with angels.

     Some are in bed-sheets, some are in blouses,
Some are in smocks: but truly there they are.
Now they are rising together in calm swells
Of halcyon feeling, filling whatever they wear
With the deep joy of their impersonal breathing;

     Now they are flying in place, conveying
The terrible speed of their omnipresence, moving
And staying like white water; and now of a sudden
They swoon down into so rapt a quiet
That nobody seems to be there.
                                  The soul shrinks

     From all that it is about to remember,
From the punctual rape of every blessd day,
And cries,
          "Oh, let there be nothing on earth but laundry,
Nothing but rosy hands in the rising steam
And clear dances done in the sight of heaven."

     Yet, as the sun acknowledges
With a warm look the world's hunks and colors,
The soul descends once more in bitter love
To accept the waking body, saying now
In a changed voice as the man yawns and rises,
     "Bring them down from their ruddy gallows;
Let there be clean linen for the backs of thieves;
Let lovers go fresh and sweet to be undone,
And the heaviest nuns walk in a pure floating
Of dark habits,
          keeping their difficult balance."

From Things of This World by Richard Wilbur (Harcourt, Brace, 1956). Included in Vox Populi for educational purposes only.

2 comments on “Richard Wilbur: Love Calls Us to the Things of This World

  1. randomyriad
    July 24, 2021

    Reblogged this on Myriad Ways.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Barbara Huntington
    June 27, 2021

    One I will read again. And again. And, omg, I have the same sheets with yellow roses.

    Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Information

This entry was posted on June 27, 2021 by in Opinion Leaders, Poetry, spirituality and tagged , , , .

Enter your email address to follow Vox Populi and receive new posts by email.

Join 12,096 other followers

Blog Stats

  • 4,298,733 hits

Archives

%d bloggers like this: