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Beneath Cherry Blossoms - The Lilliput Review Blog

Saturday, 4 August 2007

Shelley, Keith Reid and Linda Zeiser


As pointed out in this morning's Writer's Almanac, today is the birthday of Percy Bysshe Shelley.  Since no poem was provided, I thought I'd correct that here with one of his most famous short works:



    I met a Traveler from an antique land,
    Who said, "Two vast and trunkless legs of stone
    Stand in the desart. Near them, on the sand,
    Half sunk, a shattered visage lies, whose frown,
    And wrinkled lip, and sneer of cold command,
    Tell that its sculptor well those passions read,
    Which yet survive, stamped on these lifeless things,
    The hand that mocked them and the heart that fed:
    And on the pedestal these words appear:
    "My name is Ozymandias, King of Kings."
    Look on my works ye Mighty, and despair!
    No thing beside remains. Round the decay
    Of that Colossal Wreck, boundless and bare,
    The lone and level sands stretch far away.


I always felt that the song "Conquistador" by Keith Reid was a homage to Shelley's poem, so here it is in tandem:



Conquistador -- your stallion stands in need of company
And like some angel's haloed brow you reek of purity.
I see your armor-plated breast
Has long since lost its sheen
And in your death mask face
There are no signs which can be seen.

Though I hoped for something to find
I could see no place to unwind.

Conquistador -- a vulture sits upon your silver sheath
And in your rusty scabbard now the sand has taken seed.
And though your jewel-encrusted blade
Has not been plundered still
The sea has washed across your face
And taken of its fill.

Though I hoped for something to find
I could see no place to unwind.

Conquistador -- there is no time, I must pay my respect
And though I came to jeer at you, I leave now with regret.
And as the gloom begins to fall
I see there is no, only all
And though you came with sword held high
You did not conquer, only die.

Though I hoped for something to find
I could see no place to unwind.



Today's Lillie selection is from issue #108, a broadside entitled Selected Wu Songs by Linda Joan Zeiser.  Linda has been a contributor to Lilliput for many years and is a loving, sensual poet.  Here are two of her beautiful wu songs:


Dazed by longing I reach out in the mist,

searching for her on the Pepper Scented Road.

Black cloud's oppress the heart's deep hope,

while myoga ginger lingers in the breeze





One red petal drops along the path,

flaming-crimson dahlia has her way.

My incense burner is empty again

and the sandalwood is in your hand.



Linda Joan Zeiser




Posted by donw714 at 07:17 EDT | Post Comment | Permalink
Updated: Saturday, 4 August 2007 07:50 EDT

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