The Sunlight on the GardenThe sunlight on the gardenHardens and grows cold, We cannot cage the minuteWithin its nets of gold, When all is toldWe cannot beg for pardon. Our freedom as free lancesAdvances towards its end; The earth compels, upon itSonnets and birds descend; And soon, my friend, We shall have no time for dances. The sky was good for flyingDefying the church bellsAnd every evil ironSiren and what it tells: The earth compels, We are dying, Egypt, dyingAnd not expecting pardon, Hardened in heart anew, But glad to have sat underThunder and rain with you, And grateful tooFor sunlight on the garden.
September has come, it is hersWhose vitality leaps in the autumn, Whose nature prefersTrees without leaves and a fire in the fireplace. So I give her this month and the nextThough the whole of my year should be hers who has rendered alreadySo many of its days intolerable or perplexedBut so many more so happy. Who has left a scent on my life, and left my wallsDancing over and over with her shadowWhose hair is twined in all my waterfallsAnd all of London littered with remembered kisses.
Prayer before BirthI am not yet born; O hear me. Let not the bloodsucking bat or the rat or the stoat or the club-footed ghoul come near me.I am not yet born, console me.I fear that the human race may with tall walls wall me, with strong drugs dope me, with wise lies lure me, on black racks rack me, in blood-baths roll me.I am not yet born; provide meWith water to dandle me, grass to grow for me, trees to talk to me, sky to sing to me, birds and a white light in the back of my mind to guide me.I am not yet born; forgive meFor the sins that in me the world shall commit, my words when they speak me, my thoughts when they think me, my treason engendered by traitors beyond me, my life when they murder by means of my hands, my death when they live me.I am not yet born; rehearse meIn the parts I must play and the cues I must take when old men lecture me, bureaucrats hector me, mountains frown at me, lovers laugh at me, the white waves call me to folly and the desert calls me to doom and the beggar refuses my gift and my children curse me.I am not yet born; O hear me, Let not the man who is beast or who thinks he is God come near me.I am not yet born; O fill meWith strength against those who would freeze my humanity, would dragoon me into a lethal automaton, would make me a cog in a machine, a thing with one face, a thing, and against all those who would dissipate my entirety, would blow me like thistledown hither and thither or hither and thither like water held in the hands would spill me. Let them not make me a stone and let them not spill me. Otherwise kill me.