Sunday Morning

No opera, no gilded columns, no wine-dark seats…
no altos, no basses
and violins sobbing as one; no opera house,
no museum, no actual theatre, no civic center–
and what else? Only the huge doors of clouds
with the setting disc through which we leave and enter…
No masterpieces in huge frames to worship,
on such banalities has life been spent
in brightness, and yet there are the days
when every street corner rounds itself into
a sunlit surprise, a painting or a phrase,
canoes drawn up by the market, the harbour’s blue…
So much to do still, all of it praise.

~ Derek Walcott, from “No Opera” in White Egrets


Notes:

  • Poem Source – Cha Journal Blog. Image: Via Mennyfox55
  • Excerpt from “‘White Egrets” book review by Tom Payne in The Telegraph: “But some poems startle with their directness and truth; the images connect, and the ebbing tide leaves some real treasure on the beach. Among a handful of pearls is a love letter to his home, modest as Ithaca, with resonances of the poet’s life.”

Sit. Feast on your life.

Derek Walcott

The time will come
when, with elation,
you will greet yourself arriving
at your own door, in your own mirror,
and each will smile at the other’s welcome
and say, sit here. Eat.
You will love again the stranger who was your self.
Give wine. Give bread. Give back your heart
to itself, to the stranger who has loved you
all your life, whom you have ignored
for another, who knows you by heart.
Take down the love letters from the bookshelf,
the photographs, the desperate notes,
peel your own image from the mirror.
Sit. Feast on your life.

~ Derek Walcott, Love After Love


Derek Alton Walcott, 83, was born in Saint Lucia in the West Indies.  He is a poet and playwright who received the 1992 Nobel Prize in Literature.  He is currently Professor of poetry at the University of Essex in the U.K. In addition to having won the Nobel, Walcott has won many literary awards over the course of his career including an Obie Award in 1971, a MacArthur Foundation “genius” award, a Royal Society of Literature Award, the Queen’s Medal for Poetry.  (Source: Wiki)


Photograph of Derek Walcott (in 2003) by Richard Avedon. Poem Source: journalofanobody

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