Collected Poems (1934-1952) by Dylan Thomas

By Dylan Thomas

178 pp, darkish blue fabric hardback, gold lettering on backbone

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Example text

For all there is to give I offer: Crumbs, barn, and halter. Hold hard, these ancient minutes in the cuckoo’s month Hold hard, these ancient minutes in the cuckoo’s month, Under the lank, fourth folly on Glamorgan’s hill, As the green blooms ride upward, to the drive of time; Time, in a folly’s rider, like a county man Over the vault of ridings with his hound at heel, Drives forth my men, my children, from the hanging south. Country, your sport is summer, and December’s pools By crane and water-tower by the seedy trees Lie this fifth month unskated, and the birds have flown; Holy hard, my country children in the world of tales, The greenwood dying as the deer fall in their tracks, The first and steepled season, to the summer’s game.

And I am dumb to tell the crooked rose My youth is bent by the same wintry fever. The force that drives the water through the rocks Drives my red blood; that dries the mouthing streams Turns mine to wax. And I am dumb to mouth unto my veins How at the mountain spring the same mouth sucks. The hand that whirls the water in the pool Stirs the quicksand; that ropes the blowing wind Hauls my shroud sail. And I am dumb to tell the hanging man How of my clay is made the hangman’s lime. The lips of time leech to the fountain head; Love drips and gathers, but the fallen blood Shall calm her sores.

The tongue’s of heaven gossip as I glide Binding my angel’s hood. Who blows death’s feather? What glory is colour? I blow the stammel feather in the vein. The loin is glory in a working pallor. My clay unsuckled and my salt unborn, The secret child, I sift about the sea Dry in the half-tracked thigh. All all and all the dry worlds lever I All all and all the dry worlds lever, Stage of the ice, the solid ocean, All from the oil, the pound of lava. City of spring, the governed flower, Turns in the earth that turns the ashen Towns around on a wheel of fire.

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