Saturday, January 10, 2009

Remembering Shelley - To a Skylark

I was reminded of Shelley today, though I have never read Shelley to a great extent. Don’t ask why.. I have told several times before that weekends do something strange to me.

I read the poem “To a Skylark” again and again. This was perhaps the inspiration for Subramanya Bharathy’s kuyil paattu. I don’t want to take away the beauty of Shelley’s words by giving my description but would just like to say that I am left with much the same feeling as Shelley himself in this poem where he says:

Teach us, sprite or bird,
What sweet thoughts are thine:
I have never heard
Praise of love or wine
That panted forth a flood of rapture so divine.

I will leave you with closing lines of this poem:

We look before and after,
And pine for what is not:
Our sincerest laughter
With some pain is fraught;
Our sweetest songs are those that tell of saddest thought.

Yet if we could scorn
Hate, and pride, and fear;
If we were things born
Not to shed a tear,
I know not how thy joy we ever should come near.

Better than all measures
Of delightful sound,
Better than all treasures
That in books are found,
Thy skill to poet were, thou scorner of the ground!

Teach me half the gladness
That thy brain must know,
Such harmonious madness
From my lips would flow
The world should listen then, as I am listening now!

Hope you listen now as I listened then!
If you are interested you can read the full poem here:

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