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2.22.2009

i was wrong.

Dear Tara,
I was wrong. I said Milosz was my favorite, but it wasn't true. John Donne is my favorite, and has been for some while. I guess I forgot because he's canonical and I didn't want to be pretentious. (Like there's something unpretentious about loving a Nobel-prize wining Polish poet in exile, recently deceased.) Here's my perhaps favoritest poem in the world. (But of course, with me 'favorite' just means 'that which gives me delight.') Anyway and however, this is a perfect poem and prayer, and more mine now than it ever was. Pass it along to Spencer.


Batter my heart, three-personed God; for you
As yet but knock, breathe, shine, and seek to mend;
That I may rise and stand, o'erthrow me, and bend
Your force to break, blow, burn, and make me new.
I, like an usurped town, to another due,
Labor to admit you, but O, to no end;
Reason, your viceroy in me, me should defend,
But is captived, and proves weak or untrue.
Yet dearly I love you, and would be loved fain,
But am betrothed unto your enemy.
Divorce me, untie or break that knot again;
Take me to you, imprison me, for I,
Except you enthrall me, never shall be free,
Nor ever chaste, except you ravish me.

3 comments:

  1. this poem is how i learned the word ravish. in high-school.

    ReplyDelete
  2. it's rather like radish, actually.

    ReplyDelete

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