Wednesday, 11 March 2015

The Leaden Echo - Gerard Manley Hopkins

How to kéep—is there ány any, is there none such, nowhere known some, bow or brooch or braid or brace, láce, latch or catch or key to keep
Back beauty, keep it, beauty, beauty, beauty, … from vanishing away?
Ó is there no frowning of these wrinkles, rankéd wrinkles deep,
Dówn? no waving off of these most mournful messengers, still messengers, sad and stealing messengers of grey?
No there ’s none, there ’s none, O no there ’s none,
Nor can you long be, what you now are, called fair,    
Do what you may do, what, do what you may,  
And wisdom is early to despair:        
Be beginning; since, no, nothing can be done
To keep at bay    
Age and age’s evils, hoar hair,
Ruck and wrinkle, drooping, dying, death’s worst, winding sheets, tombs and worms and tumbling to decay;
So be beginning, be beginning to despair.        
O there ’s none; no no no there ’s none:
Be beginning to despair, to despair,                
Despair, despair, despair, despair.

Gerard Manley Hopkins (1844 – 1889) England

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