Friday, 1 July 2011

John Clare tweet poetry 02

From 1837 until 1841, Clare spent his first years in the Dr Matthew Allen's private asylum High Beech. He didn't stop his creative work. He re-wrote famous poems and sonnets by Lord Byron but skewed. A version of Child Harold became a lament for lost love, and Don Juan, A Poem a rant redolent of an ageing misogynistic dandy. 

"I'm John Clare now," the poet claimed to a newspaper editor, "I was Byron and Shakespeare formerly." 

The full poem:

In Hilly-wood

How sweet to be thus nestling deep in boughs,
Upon an ashen stoven pillowing me;
Faintly are heard the ploughmen at their ploughs,
But not an eye can find its way to see.
The sunbeams scarce molest me with a smile,
So thick the leafy armies gather round;
And where they do, the breeze blows cool the while,
Their leafy shadows dancing on the ground.
Full many a flower, too, wishing to be seen,
Perks up its head the hiding grass between.-
In mid-wood silence, thus, how sweet to be;
Where all the noises, that on peace intrude,
Come from the chittering cricket, bird, and bee,
Whose songs have charms to sweeten solitude.

More John Clare tweet poetry:

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