The More Loving One

One of my favourite poems which I would like to share with you, kind reader.

Looking up at the stars, I know quite well
That, for all they care, I can go to hell,
But on earth indifference is the least
We have to dread from man or beast.

How should we like it were stars to burn
With a passion for us we could not return?
If equal affection cannot be,
Let the more loving one be me.

Admirer as I think I am
Of stars that do not give a damn,
I cannot, now I see them, say
I missed one terribly all day.

Were all stars to disappear or die,
I should learn to look at an empty sky
And feel its total dark sublime,
Though this might take me a little time.

W.H. Auden 1907 – 1973

True courage

“You have plenty of courage, I am sure,” answered Oz. “All you need is confidence in yourself. There is no living thing that is not afraid when it faces danger. The true courage is in facing danger when you are afraid, and that kind of courage you have in plenty.”

L. Frank Baum – The Wonderful Wizard of Oz

A Sonnet from the Bard

My mistress’ eyes are nothing like the sun;

Coral is far more red than her lips’ red;

If snow be white, why then her breasts are dun;

If hairs be wires, black wires grow on her head.

I have seen roses damasked, red and white,

But no such roses see I in her cheeks;

And in some perfumes is there more delight

Than in the breath that from my mistress reeks.

I love to hear her speak, yet well I know

That music hath a far more pleasing sound;

I grant I never saw a goddess go;

My mistress when she walks treads on the ground.

And yet, by heaven, I think my love as rare

As any she belied with false compare.


Sonnet 130

William Shakespeare 1564 – 1616


Remembering the Elephant Man

With today’s post I’d like to pay tribute to Joseph Merrick, the Elephant Man, born on this day 5 August in 1862.

I would like to share a poem Merrick used to end his letters – adapted from “False Greatness” by Isaac Watts – which has touched me deeply:


‘Tis true my form is something odd,
But blaming me is blaming God;
Could I create myself anew
I would not fail in pleasing you.

                    If I could reach from pole to pole
                  Or grasp the ocean with a span,
                  I would be measured by the soul;
                  The mind’s the standard of the man.




I shall not live in vain

If I can stop one heart from breaking,

       I shall not live in vain.

If I can ease one life the aching,

       Or cool one pain,

Or help one fainting robin

       Unto his nest again,

I shall not live in vain.

                                                                  Emily Dickinson



Copyright – Mike Walker