WS Merwin

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W.S. Merwin–Online Poems Essay, Research Paper GREEN FIELDS By this part of the century few are left who believe in the animals for they are not there in the carved parts of them served on plates and the pleas from the slatted trucks are sounds of shadows that possess no future there is still game for the pleasure of killing and there are pets for the children but the lives that followed courses of their own other than ours and older have been migrating before us some are already far on the way and yet Peter with his gaunt cheeks and point of white beard the face of an aged Lawrence Peter who had lived on from another time and country and who had seen so many things set out and vanish still believed in heaven and said he had never once doubted it since his childhood on the

farm in the days of the horses he had not doubted it in the worst times of the Great War and afterward and he had come to what he took to be a kind of earthly model of it as he wandered south in his sixties by that time speaking the language well enough for them to make him out he took the smallest roads into a world he thought was a thing of the past with wildflowers he scarcely remembered and neighbors working together scything the morning meadows turning the hay before the noon meal bringing it in by milking time husbandry and abundance all the virtues he admired and their reward bounteous in the eyes of a foreigner and there he remained for the rest of his days seeing what he wanted to see until the winter when he could no longer fork the earth in his garden and then he gave

away his house land everything and committed himself to a home to die in an old chateau where he lingered for some time surrounded by those who had lost the use of body or mind and as he lay there he told me that the wall by his bed opened almost every day and he saw what was really there and it was eternal life as he recognized at once when he saw the gardens he had made and the green fields where he had been a child and his mother was standing there then the wall would close and around him again were the last days of the world Online Source: http://www.theatlantic.com/unbound/poetry/antholog/merwin/green.htm UNKNOWN BIRD Out of the dry days through the dusty leaves far across the valley those few notes never heard here before one fluted phrase floating over its wandering secret

all at once wells up somewhere else and is gone before it goes on fallen into its own echo leaving a hollow through the air that is dry as before where is it from hardly anyone seems to have noticed it so far but who now would have been listening it is not native here that may be the one thing we are sure of it came from somewhere else perhaps alone so keeps on calling for no one who is here hoping to be heard by another of its own unlikely origin trying once more the same few notes that began the song of an oriole last heard years ago in another existence there it goes again tell no one it is here foreign as we are who are filling the days with a sound of our own Online Source: http://www.theatlantic.com/unbound/poetry/antholog/merwin/unknownbird.htm TERM At the last minute a

word is waiting not heard that way before and not to be repeated or ever be remembered one that always had been a household word used in speaking of the ordinary everyday recurrences of living not newly chosen or long considered or a matter for comment afterward who would ever have thought it was the one saying itself from the beginning through all its uses and circumstances to utter at last that meaning of its own for which it had long been the only word though it seems now that any word would do Online Source: http://www.theatlantic.com/unbound/poetry/antholog/merwin/term.htm ANY TIME How long ago the day is when at last I look at it with the time it has taken to be there still in it now in the transparent light with the flight in the voices the beginning in the leaves