Friday, September 10, 2010

On Finding One's Muse

Nobody depends on the Muse like a poet.  And, therefore, there exist quite a few good poems dedicated to the poets' Muses.  Here are two:

Muse (by Alexander Sergeyevich Pushkin)

In my youth's years, she loved me, I am sure.
The flute of seven pipes she gave in my tenure
And harked to me with smile -- without speed,
Along the ringing holes of the reed,
I got to play with my non-artful fingers
The peaceful songs of Phrygian village singers,
And the important hymns, that gods to mortals bade.
From morn till night in oaks' silent shade
I diligently harked to the mysterious virgin;
Rewarding me, by chance, for any good decision,
And taking locks aside of the enchanting face,
She sometimes took from me the flute, such commonplace.
The reed became alive in consecrated breathing
And filled the heart with holiness unceasing.

When I Met My Muse (by William Stafford)

I glanced at her and took my glasses
off--they were still singing. They buzzed
like a locust on the coffee table and then
ceased. Her voice belled forth, and the
sunlight bent. I felt the ceiling arch, and
knew that nails up there took a new grip
on whatever they touched. "I am your own
way of looking at things," she said. "When
you allow me to live with you, every
glance at the world around you will be
a sort of salvation." And I took her hand.