Wednesday, December 06, 2006

Butterfly Wisdom, poet unknown has recently uploaded a book called Pages for Laughing Eyes by Unknown. In it are short yarns for children, some themed to the winter holidays, and quite a few poems, making it a good book to take out for bedtime stories.

Two of the poems, "Butterfly Wisdom" and "When I Grow Up", are included below, along with the picture "A Busy Street".


Butterfly Wisdom

            A butterfly poised on a wild-rose spray,
            As a child tripped by one summer day,
            And he thought: "How sorrowful she must be
            To know she can never have wings like me!"
            But the child passed on, with a careless eye
            Of the gay-winged, proud, young butterfly,
            While he fluttered about, as butterflies will,
            Sipping of honey and dew his fill.

            The butterfly spread his wings to the sky,
            As the sweet-faced child again tripped by,
            And he thought: "How envious she will be
            My beautiful azure wings to see!"
            But the child passed, with a lightsome heart,
            Where never had lodged a poisonous dart,
            While he fluttered about, as butterflies will,
            Sipping of honey and dew his fill.

            When the child again passed the wild-rose sweet,
            A bit of azure fell at her feet;
            She lifted it from the moss, and said:--
            "Poor little butterfly, it is dead!"
            Then she tossed it up towards the wild-rose spray,
            And, singing merrily, went her way,
            With never a thought, the summer through,
            Of the butterfly and its wings of blue.


When I Grow Up

                  "When I grow up my dress shall be
                  All made of silk and lace,
            My hair I'll wear in some fine style
                  That best will suit my face;
            With rings upon my fingers, too,
                  And bracelets on my arms,
            I'll be the finest lady out,
                  With wondrous mighty charms.

                  "When I grow up, you understand,
                  I'll always dine at eight,
            And go to dances and 'At homes,'
                  And sit up very late.
            I'll never touch rice-puddings then,
                  But pastry eat, and cheese,
            And always do just what I like
                  And go just where I please.

                  "When I grow up I'll have no nurse,
                  Nor yet a governess;
            And lessons will not bother me
                  When I grow up, I guess.
            I'll pay no heed to proper nouns,
                  Nor yet to mood nor tense"--
            Here nurse put in: "When you grow up
                  Let's hope you'll have some sense!"


A Busy Street



At 9:11 PM, Anonymous chris said...

a chinese poetry
Seeing a Friend Off

Green mountains range beyond the northen wall.
White water rushes round the eastern town.
Right here is where, alone and restless, he
Begins a journey of a thousand miles.
While travelers' intents are fleeting clouds,
A friend's affection is a setting sun.
He waves good-bye, and as he goes from here,
His dappled horse lets out a lonely neigh.

By Li Bai Tr. Stephen Carlson

At 10:29 PM, Blogger Bud Bloom said...

Hi Chris,

Love the poem, and an interesting meter to render Li Bai into, similar to the poem above.

I think the meter creates a distance, as does the third person--although I don't speak the language as you do, but here's another:

A Farewell to a Friend

With a blue line of mountains north of the wall,
And east of the city a white curve of water,
Here you must leave me and drift away
Like a loosened water-plant hundreds of miles....
I shall think of you in a floating cloud;
So in the sunset think of me.
...We wave our hands to say good-bye,
And my horse is neighing again and again.

Thanks very much.


At 12:28 PM, Anonymous Patent Attorney said...

Beautiful poems, I like how When I Grow Up captures that childish naivety and curiosity!


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