Words & music

I always forget how much I love poetry.

It’s funny that I forget how much I love it; I wrote a ton of it when I was a kid (even won an award once). And my favorite prose writers use words economically (kinda like poets). Good poetry can make words sing—even without music.

Case in point, one of my favorite poems in all the world: “Inversnaid” by Gerard Manley Hopkins. Do yourself a favor and read it aloud. Feel how the words trip out of your mouth.

Only poetry can make words do this. How can I forget that?

This darksome burn, horseback brown
His rollrock highroad roaring down,
In coop and in comb the fleece of his foam
Flutes and low to the lake falls home.

A windpuff-bonnet of fawn-froth
Turns and twindles over the broth
Of a pool so pitchblack, fell-frowning
It rounds and rounds Despair to drowning.

Degged with dew, dappled with dew
Are the groins of the braes that the brook treads through,
Wiry heathpack, flitches of fern
And the beadbonny ash that sits over the burn.

What would the world be, once bereft
Of wet and of wildness? Let them be left
O let them be left, wildness and wet;
Long live the weeds and the wilderness yet.