Under Cancer by John Hollander
John Hollander
On the Memorial building's
Terrace the sun has been buzzing
Unbearably, all the while
The white baking happens
To the shadow of the table's
White-painted iron. It darkens,
Meaning that the sun is stronger,
That I am invisibly darkening
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On Laws by Kahlil Gibran
Kahlil Gibran
Then a lawyer said, But what of our Laws,
And he answered:
You delight in laying down laws,
Yet you delight more in breaking them.
Like children playing by the ocean who
build sand-towers with constancy and then
destroy them with laughter.
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Of the Dark Doves by Federico García Lorca
Federico García Lorca
For Claudio Guillén In the branches of the laurel tree
I saw two dark doves
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Cookie by David L. Harrison
David L. Harrison
Tonight's your lucky night, boys.
Look what I fixed for you!
Stood all day in the burning sun
to make this son-of-a-gun stew.

Longhorn steaks two inches thick,
dig in while they're hot.
The coffee'll keep you up all night,
belly up to the pot.
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Oakland Blues by Ishmael Reed
Ishmael Reed
Well it's six o'clock in Oakland
and the sun is full of wine
I say, it's six o'clock in Oakland
and the sun is red with wine
We buried you this morning, baby
in the shadow of a vine

Well, they told you of the sickness
almost eighteen months ago
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August 1914 by May Wedderburn Cannan
May Wedderburn Cannan
The sun rose over the sweep of the hill
All bare for the gathered hay,
And a blackbird sang by the window-sill,
And a girl knelt down to pray:
‘Whom Thou hast kept through the night, O Lord,
Keep Thou safe through the day.’

The sun rose over the shell-swept height,
The guns are over the way,
And a soldier turned from the toil of the night
To the toil of another day,
And a bullet sang by the parapet
To drive in the new-turned clay.

The sun sank slow by the sweep of the hill,
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from The Indigo Glass in the Grass by Wallace Stevens
Wallace Stevens
Which is real—
This bottle of indigo glass in the grass,
Or the bench with the pot of geraniums, the stained mattress and the washed overalls drying in the sun?
Which of these truly contains the world?

Neither one, nor the two together.
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Futility by Wilfred Owen
Wilfred Owen
Move him into the sun—
Gently its touch awoke him once,
At home, whispering of fields half-sown.
Always it woke him, even in France,
Until this morning and this snow.
If anything might rouse him now
The kind old sun will know.

Think how it wakes the seeds—
Woke once the clays of a cold star.
Are limbs, so dear-achieved, are sides
Full-nerved, still warm, too hard to stir?
Was it for this the clay grew tall?
—O what made fatuous sunbeams toil
To break earth's sleep at all?
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The Ecchoing Green by William Blake
William Blake
The sun does arise,
And make happy the skies.
The merry bells ring
To welcome the Spring.
The sky-lark and thrush,
The birds of the bush,
Sing louder around,
To the bells’ cheerful sound.
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A not admitting of the wound (1188) by Emily Dickinson
Emily Dickinson
A not admitting of the wound
Until it grew so wide
That all my Life had entered it
And there were troughs beside -

A closing of the simple lid that opened to the sun
Until the tender Carpenter
Perpetual nail it down -
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44th Birthday Evening, at Harris’s by Ted Berrigan
Ted Berrigan
Nine stories high Second Avenue
On the roof there’s a party
All the friends are there watching
By the light of the moon the blazing sun
Go down over the side of the planet
To light up the underside of Earth
There are long bent telescopes for the friends
To watch this through. The friends are all in shadow.
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The Truly Great by Stephen Spender
Stephen Spender
I think continually of those who were truly great.
Who, from the womb, remembered the soul’s history
Through corridors of light, where the hours are suns,
Endless and singing. Whose lovely ambition
Was that their lips, still touched with fire,
Should tell of the Spirit, clothed from head to foot in song.
And who hoarded from the Spring branches
The desires falling across their bodies like blossoms.
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Arroyo: Flash Flood by John Unterecker
John Unterecker
The canyon walls close in again,
slant light a silver glare in brown water.
The water is only knee deep, but when the boy reaches the
purple dark, silvered by the smash of brute water—
water will tear at his chest and arms.
The walls of the canyon are brilliant in late light.
They would have glared red and gold for his drowned camera:
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The Sun Came by Etheridge Knight
Etheridge Knight
And if sun comes
How shall we greet him?
—Gwen Brooks The sun came, Miss Brooks,—
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The House of the Sun by Donald (Grady) Davidson
Donald (Grady) Davidson
“The chambers of the sun, that now
From ancient melody have ceased.”

The doorways of the Sun were closed;
Its muted bells gave forth no sound.
But while the windy prophets dozed
A child a little crevice found.
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Song of the Son by Jean Toomer
Jean Toomer
Pour O pour that parting soul in song,
O pour it in the sawdust glow of night,
Into the velvet pine-smoke air tonight,
And let the valley carry it along.
And let the valley carry it along.

O land and soil, red soil and sweet-gum tree,
So scant of grass, so profligate of pines,
Now just before an epoch’s sun declines
Thy son, in time, I have returned to thee.
Thy son, I have in time returned to thee.

In time, for though the sun is setting on
A song-lit race of slaves, it has not set;
Though late, O soil, it is not too late yet
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Today by Daniel G. Hoffman
Daniel G. Hoffman
Today the sun rose, as it used to do
When its mission was to shine on you.
Since in unrelenting dark you're gone,
What now can be the purpose of  the sun?
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The Brook by Edward Thomas
Edward Thomas
Seated once by a brook, watching a child
Chiefly that paddled, I was thus beguiled.
Mellow the blackbird sang and sharp the thrush
Not far off in the oak and hazel brush,
Unseen. There was a scent like honeycomb
From mugwort dull. And down upon the dome
Of the stone the cart-horse kicks against so oft
A butterfly alighted. From aloft
He took the heat of the sun, and from below.
On the hot stone he perched contented so,
As if never a cart would pass again
That way; as if I were the last of men
And he the first of insects to have earth
And sun together and to know their worth.
I was divided between him and the gleam,
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The Sign-Post by Edward Thomas
Edward Thomas
The dim sea glints chill. The white sun is shy,
And the skeleton weeds and the never-dry,
Rough, long grasses keep white with frost
At the hilltop by the finger-post;
The smoke of the traveller’s-joy is puffed
Over hawthorn berry and hazel tuft.
I read the sign. Which way shall I go?
A voice says: You would not have doubted so
At twenty. Another voice gentle with scorn
Says: At twenty you wished you had never been born.

One hazel lost a leaf of gold
From a tuft at the tip, when the first voice told
The other he wished to know what ’twould be
To be sixty by this same post. “You shall see,”
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Kef 12 by Henry Dumas
Henry Dumas
Take up the blood from the grass, sun.
Take it up.
These people do not thirst for it.
Take up the insect children that play in
the grass, sun.
Take them away.
These people are sick of them.
Take down the long slender reeds, sun.
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Rite by Henry Dumas
Henry Dumas
Vodu green clinching his waist,
obi purple ringing his neck,
Shango, God of the spirits,
whispering in his ear,
thunderlight stabbing the island
of blood rising from his skull.

Mojo bone in his fist
strikes the sun from his eye.
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I have to tell you by Dorothea Grossman
Dorothea Grossman
I have to tell you,
there are times when
the sun strikes me
like a gong,
and I remember everything,
even your ears.
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The Beach in August by Weldon Kees
Weldon Kees
The day the fat woman
In the bright blue bathing suit
Walked into the water and died,
I thought about the human
Condition. Pieces of old fruit
Came in and were left by the tide.

What I thought about the human
Condition was this: old fruit
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In Love with You by Kenneth Koch
Kenneth Koch


O what a physical effect it has on me
To dive forever into the light blue sea
Of your acquaintance! Ah, but dearest friends,
Like forms, are finished, as life has ends! Still,
It is beautiful, when October
Is over, and February is over,
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An Agony. As Now. by Amiri Baraka
Amiri Baraka
I am inside someone
who hates me. I look
out from his eyes. Smell
what fouled tunes come in
to his breath. Love his
wretched women.

Slits in the metal, for sun. Where
my eyes sit turning, at the cool air
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The Wife Speaks by Elizabeth Drew Barstow Stoddard
Elizabeth Drew Barstow Stoddard
Husband, today could you and I behold
The sun that brought us to our bridal morn
Rising so splendid in the winter sky
(We though fair spring returned), when we were wed;
Could the shades vanish from these fifteen years,
Which stand like columns guarding the approach
To that great temple of the double soul
That is as one – would you turn back, my dear,
And, for the sake of Love’s mysterious dream,
As old as Adam and as sweet as Eve,
Take me, as I took you, and once more go
Towards that goal which none of us have reached?
Contesting battles which but prove a loss,
The victor vanquished by the wounded one;
Teaching each other sacrifice of self,
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Harvest Gathering by Phoebe Cary
Phoebe Cary
The last days of the summer: bright and clear
Shines the warm sun down on the quiet land,
Where corn-fields, thick and heavy in the ear,
Are slowly ripening for the laborer’s hand;
Seed-time and harvest — since the bow was set,
Not vainly has man hoped your coming yet!

To the quick rush of sickles, joyously
The reapers in the yellow wheat-fields sung,
And bound the pale sheaves of the ripened rye,
When the first tassels of the maize were hung;
That precious seed into the furrow cast
Earliest in spring-time, crowns the harvest last.

Ever, when summer’s sun burns faint and dim,
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Haiku by Etheridge Knight
Etheridge Knight
Eastern guard tower
glints in sunset; convicts rest
like lizards on rocks.

The piano man
is stingy, at 3 A.M.
his songs drop like plum.

Morning sun slants cell.
Drunks stagger like cripple flies
On jailhouse floor.

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I’m thankful that my life doth not deceive by Henry David Thoreau
Henry David Thoreau
I’m thankful that my life doth not deceive
Itself with a low loftiness, half height,
And think it soars when still it dip its way
Beneath the clouds on noiseless pinion
Like the crow or owl, but it doth know
The full extent of all its trivialness,
Compared with the splendid heights above.
See how it waits to watch the mail come in
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Song: I once rejoiced, sweet evening gale... by Amelia Opie
Amelia Opie
I once rejoiced, sweet evening gale,
To see thy breath the poplar wave;
But now it makes my cheek turn pale,
It waves the grass o’er Henry’s grave.

Ah! setting sun! how changed I seem!
I to thy rays prefer deep gloom, —
Since now, alas! I see them beam
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Telling the Bees by Lizette Woodworth Reese
Lizette Woodworth Reese
A Colonial Custom Bathsheba came out to the sun,
Out to our wallèd cherry-trees;
The tears adown her cheek did run,
Bathsheba standing in the sun,
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In the Goddess’s Name I Summon You. . . by George Seferis
George Seferis
Oil on limbs,
maybe a rancid smell
as on the chapel’s
oil-press here,
as on the rough pores
of the unturning stone.

Oil on hair
wreathed in rope
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Limits by Ralph Waldo Emerson
Ralph Waldo Emerson
Who knows this or that?
Hark in the wall to the rat:
Since the world was, he has gnawed;
Of his wisdom, of his fraud
What dost thou know?
In the wretched little beast
Is life and heart,
Child and parent,
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Our Sun by George Seferis
George Seferis
This sun was mine and yours; we shared it.
Who’s suffering behind the golden silk, who’s dying?
A woman beating her dry breasts cried out: ‘Cowards,
they’ve taken my children and torn them to shreds, you’ve killed them
gazing at the fire-flies at dusk with a strange look,
lost in blind thought.’
The blood was drying on a hand that a tree made green,
a warrior was asleep clutching the lance that cast light against his side.
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Tradition by Lorine Niedecker
Lorine Niedecker
The chemist creates
the brazen
Thy will be done

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anyone lived in a pretty how town by E. E. Cummings
E. E. Cummings
anyone lived in a pretty how town
(with up so floating many bells down)
spring summer autumn winter
he sang his didn’t he danced his did.

Women and men(both little and small)
cared for anyone not at all
they sowed their isn’t they reaped their same
sun moon stars rain
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The Country Whore by Cesare Pavese
Cesare Pavese
The big front wall that blocks off the courtyard
often catches the newborn light of the sun
like the side of a barn. The body awakes
in the morning to a room, messy and empty,
that smells of the first, clumsy perfume.
Even that body, wrapped now in sheets,
is the same that it was when it thrilled in discovery.

Her body wakes alone to the extended call
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Damselfly, Trout, Heron by John Engels
John Engels
The damselfly folds its wings
over its body when at rest. Captured,
it should not be killed
in cyanide, but allowed to die
slowly: then the colors,
especially the reds and blues,
will last. In the hand
it crushes easily into a rosy
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Danny Deever by Rudyard Kipling
Rudyard Kipling
‘What are the bugles blowin’ for?' said Files-on-Parade.
‘To turn you out, to turn you out,’ the Colour-Sergeant said.
‘What makes you look so white, so white?’ said Files-on-Parade.
‘I’m dreadin’ what I’ve got to watch,’ the Colour-Sergeant said.
For they’re hangin’ Danny Deever, you can hear the Dead March play,
The Regiment’s in ’ollow square—they’re hangin’ him to-day;
They’ve taken of his buttons off an’ cut his stripes away,
An’ they're hangin’ Danny Deever in the mornin’.
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Hot Sun, Cool Fire by George Peele
George Peele
Hot sun, cool fire, tempered with sweet air,
Black shade, fair nurse, shadow my white hair.
Shine, sun; burn, fire; breathe, air, and ease me;
Black shade, fair nurse, shroud me and please me.
Shadow, my sweet nurse, keep me from burning;
Make not my glad cause cause of mourning.
Let not my beauty’s fire
Inflame unstaid desire,
Nor pierce any bright eye
That wandereth lightly.

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Miriam Tazewell by John Crowe Ransom
John Crowe Ransom
When Miriam Tazewell heard the tempest bursting
And his wrathy whips across the sky drawn crackling
She stuffed her ears for fright like a young thing
And with heart full of the flowers took to weeping.

But the earth shook dry his old back in good season,
He had weathered storms that drenched him deep as this one,
And the sun, Miriam, ascended to his dominion,
The storm was withered against his empyrean.
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A Moment by Mary Elizabeth Coleridge
Mary Elizabeth Coleridge
The clouds had made a crimson crown
Above the mountains high.
The stormy sun was going down
In a stormy sky.

Why did you let your eyes so rest on me,
And hold your breath between?
In all the ages this can never be
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The Net by Babette Deutsch
Babette Deutsch
Into this net of leaves, green as old glass
That the sun fondles, trembling like images

In water, this live net, swung overhead
From branch to branch, what swam? The spider’s thread

Is less passive, where it appears to float
Like a bright hair clinging to the wind’s coat.

Hot at work, history neither schemes nor grieves
Here where the soaking dead are last year’s leaves,
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Neutral Tones by Thomas Hardy
Thomas Hardy
We stood by a pond that winter day,
And the sun was white, as though chidden of God,
And a few leaves lay on the starving sod;
– They had fallen from an ash, and were gray.

Your eyes on me were as eyes that rove
Over tedious riddles of years ago;
And some words played between us to and fro
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The Performance by James L. Dickey
James L. Dickey
The last time I saw Donald Armstrong
He was staggering oddly off into the sun,
Going down, off the Philippine Islands.
I let my shovel fall, and put that hand
Above my eyes, and moved some way to one side
That his body might pass through the sun,

And I saw how well he was not
Standing there on his hands,
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A Roundelay between Two Shepherds by Michael Drayton
Michael Drayton
1 Shep. Tell me, thou gentle shepherd swain,
Who’s yonder in the vale is set?
2 Shep. Oh, it is she, whose sweets do stain
The lily, rose, the violet!

1 Shep. Why doth the sun against his kind,
Fix his bright chariot in the skies?
2 Shep. Because the sun is stricken blind
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Telling the Bees by John Greenleaf Whittier
John Greenleaf Whittier
Here is the place; right over the hill
Runs the path I took;
You can see the gap in the old wall still,
And the stepping-stones in the shallow brook.

There is the house, with the gate red-barred,
And the poplars tall;
And the barn’s brown length, and the cattle-yard,
And the white horns tossing above the wall.

There are the beehives ranged in the sun;
And down by the brink
Of the brook are her poor flowers, weed-o’errun,
Pansy and daffodil, rose and pink.

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Variations on a Text by Vallejo by Donald Justice
Donald Justice
Me moriré en Paris con aguacero ... I will die in Miami in the sun,
On a day when the sun is very bright,
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Winter Dawn by Kenneth Slessor
Kenneth Slessor
At five I wake, rise, rub on the smoking pane
A port to see—water breathing in the air,
Boughs broken. The sun comes up in a golden stain,
Floats like a glassy sea-fruit. There is mist everywhere,
White and humid, and the Harbour is like plated stone,
Dull flakes of ice. One light drips out alone,
One bead of winter-red, smouldering in the steam,
Quietly over the roof-tops—another window
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Ah! Sun-flower by William Blake
William Blake
Ah Sun-flower! weary of time,
Who countest the steps of the Sun:
Seeking after that sweet golden clime
Where the travellers journey is done.

Where the Youth pined away with desire,
And the pale Virgin shrouded in snow:
Arise from their graves and aspire,
Where my Sun-flower wishes to go.
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The Bait by John Donne
John Donne
Come live with me, and be my love,
And we will some new pleasures prove
Of golden sands, and crystal brooks,
With silken lines, and silver hooks.

There will the river whispering run
Warm'd by thy eyes, more than the sun;
And there the 'enamour'd fish will stay,
Begging themselves they may betray.

When thou wilt swim in that live bath,
Each fish, which every channel hath,
Will amorously to thee swim,
Gladder to catch thee, than thou him.

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The Barrel-Organ by Alfred Noyes
Alfred Noyes
There’s a barrel-organ carolling across a golden street
In the City as the sun sinks low;
And the music's not immortal; but the world has made it sweet
And fulfilled it with the sunset glow;
And it pulses through the pleasures of the City and the pain
That surround the singing organ like a large eternal light;
And they’ve given it a glory and a part to play again
In the Symphony that rules the day and night.
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Buckroe, After the Season, 1942 by Virginia Hamilton Adair
Virginia Hamilton Adair
Past the fourth cloverleaf, by dwindling roads
At last we came into the unleashed wind;
The Chesapeake rose to meet us at a dead end
Beyond the carnival wheels and gingerbread.

Forsaken by summer, the wharf. The oil-green waves
Flung yellow foam and sucked at disheveled sand.
Small fish stank in the sun, and nervous droves
Of cloud hastened their shadows over bay and land.
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Coal by Audre Lorde
Audre Lorde
Is the total black, being spoken
From the earth's inside.
There are many kinds of open.
How a diamond comes into a knot of flame
How a sound comes into a word, coloured
By who pays what for speaking.

Some words are open
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The Complaint of Lisa by Algernon Charles Swinburne
Algernon Charles Swinburne
(Double Sestina)

DECAMERON, x. 7 There is no woman living that draws breath
So sad as I, though all things sadden her.
There is not one upon life's weariest way
Who is weary as I am weary of all but death.
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The Eagle by Alfred, Lord Tennyson
Alfred, Lord Tennyson
He clasps the crag with crooked hands;
Close to the sun in lonely lands,
Ring'd with the azure world, he stands.

The wrinkled sea beneath him crawls;
He watches from his mountain walls,
And like a thunderbolt he falls.
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The End of an Ethnic Dream by Jay Wright
Jay Wright
Cigarettes in my mouth
to puncture blisters in my brain.
My bass a fine piece of furniture.
My fingers soft, too soft to rattle
rafters in second-rate halls.
The harmonies I could never learn
stick in Ayler's screams.
An African chant chokes us. My image shot.
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Follow Thy Fair Sun by Thomas Campion
Thomas Campion
Follow thy fair sun, unhappy shadow,
Though thou be black as night
And she made all of light,
Yet follow thy fair sun unhappy shadow.

Follow her whose light thy light depriveth,
Though here thou liv’st disgraced,
And she in heaven is placed,
Yet follow her whose light the world reviveth.

Follow those pure beams whose beauty burneth,
That so have scorched thee,
As thou still black must be,
Till Her kind beams thy black to brightness turneth.

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Forecast by Josephine Miles
Josephine Miles
All our stones like as much sun as possible.
Along their joints run both solar access and decline
In equal splendor, like a mica chipping
At every beat, being sun responsible.

How much sun then do you think is due them?
Or should say, how much sun do you think they are apt to have?
It has misted at their roots for some days now,
The gray glamour addressing itself to them.
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From the House of Yemanjá by Audre Lorde
Audre Lorde
My mother had two faces and a frying pot
where she cooked up her daughters
into girls
before she fixed our dinner.
My mother had two faces
and a broken pot
where she hid out a perfect daughter
who was not me
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Harlem by Langston Hughes
Langston Hughes
What happens to a dream deferred?

Does it dry up
like a raisin in the sun?
Or fester like a sore—
And then run?
Does it stink like rotten meat?
Or crust and sugar over—
like a syrupy sweet?
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Holy Thursday: Is this a holy thing to see by William Blake
William Blake
Is this a holy thing to see,
In a rich and fruitful land,
Babes reducd to misery,
Fed with cold and usurous hand?

Is that trembling cry a song?
Can it be a song of joy?
And so many children poor?
It is a land of poverty!

And their sun does never shine.
And their fields are bleak &bare.
And their ways are fill'd with thorns.
It is eternal winter there.

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I Heard an Angel by William Blake
William Blake
I heard an Angel singing
When the day was springing
Mercy Pity Peace
Is the worlds release

Thus he sung all day
Over the new mown hay
Till the sun went down
And haycocks looked brown

I heard a Devil curse
Over the heath & the furze
Mercy could be no more
If there was nobody poor

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Mary Morison by Robert Burns
Robert Burns
O Mary, at thy window be,
It is the wish'd, the trysted hour!
Those smiles and glances let me see,
That makes the miser's treasure poor:
How blythely wad I bide the stoure,
A weary slave frae sun to sun,
Could I the rich reward secure,
The lovely Mary Morison.

Yestreen when to the trembling string
The dance gaed thro' the lighted ha'
To thee my fancy took its wing,
I sat, but neither heard nor saw:
Tho' this was fair, and that was braw,
And yon the toast of a' the town,
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A Nocturnal upon St. Lucy's Day by John Donne
John Donne
'Tis the year's midnight, and it is the day's,
Lucy's, who scarce seven hours herself unmasks;
The sun is spent, and now his flasks
Send forth light squibs, no constant rays;
The world's whole sap is sunk;
The general balm th' hydroptic earth hath drunk,
Whither, as to the bed's feet, life is shrunk,
Dead and interr'd; yet all these seem to laugh,
Compar'd with me, who am their epitaph.

Study me then, you who shall lovers be
At the next world, that is, at the next spring;
For I am every dead thing,
In whom Love wrought new alchemy.
For his art did express
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Penumbrae by John Updike
John Updike
The shadows have their seasons, too.
The feathery web the budding maples
cast down upon the sullen lawn

bears but a faint relation to
high summer's umbrageous weight
and tunnellike continuum—

black leached from green, deep pools
wherein a globe of gnats revolves
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Sonnet 33: Full many a glorious morning have I seen by William Shakespeare
William Shakespeare
Full many a glorious morning have I seen
Flatter the mountain-tops with sovereign eye,
Kissing with golden face the meadows green,
Gilding pale streams with heavenly alchemy;
Anon permit the basest clouds to ride
With ugly rack on his celestial face
And from the forlorn world his visage hide,
Stealing unseen to west with this disgrace.
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The Spring by Thomas Carew
Thomas Carew
Now that the winter's gone, the earth hath lost
Her snow-white robes, and now no more the frost
Candies the grass, or casts an icy cream
Upon the silver lake or crystal stream;
But the warm sun thaws the benumbed earth,
And makes it tender; gives a sacred birth
To the dead swallow; wakes in hollow tree
The drowsy cuckoo, and the humble-bee.
Now do a choir of chirping minstrels bring
In triumph to the world the youthful Spring.
The valleys, hills, and woods in rich array
Welcome the coming of the long'd-for May.
Now all things smile, only my love doth lour;
Nor hath the scalding noonday sun the power
To melt that marble ice, which still doth hold
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Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star by Jane Taylor
Jane Taylor
Twinkle, twinkle, little star,
How I wonder what you are!
Up above the world so high,
Like a diamond in the sky.

When the blazing sun is gone,
When he nothing shines upon,
Then you show your little light,
Twinkle, twinkle, all the night.

Then the traveler in the dark
Thanks you for your tiny spark,
How could he see where to go,
If you did not twinkle so?

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The Cometary Script by Daisy Aldan
Daisy Aldan
He said, ‘Tracking across space-time in their long-drawn elliptical
orbits, as many Comets as fish in the sea
are announcing their approach by a fall, from seven Radiants,
of meteors, bombarding Earth with heavenly
debris; myriads visible myriads invisible.’
Copious meteors came streaking toward me
like a driving snow-storm, grasped only in the mind’s geography.

‘Core magnetized by Sun in their elliptical
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