"That which does no earthly good cannot be heavenly minded." R. Rivera

Sunday, August 28, 2011

"America, America," by Delmore Schwartz

Edmund Kish to his mother: "You have just seen a genius."

Mrs. Kish: "How much money does he make?"
Delmore Schwartz, "The World is a Wedding"


I am a poet of the Hudson River and the heights above it,
the lights, the stars, and the bridges
I am also by self-appointment the laureate of the Atlantic
-of the peoples' hearts, crossing it
to new America.

I am burdened with the truck and chimera, hope,
acquired in the sweating sick-excited passage
in steerage, strange and estranged
Hence I must descry and describe the kingdom of emotion.

For I am a poet of the kindergarten (in the city)
and the cemetery (in the city)
And rapture and ragtime and also the secret city in the
heart and mind
This is the song of the natural city self in the 20th century.

It is true but only partly true that a city is a "tyranny of
(This is the chant of the urban metropolitan and
metaphysical self
After the first two World Wars of the 20th century)

--- This is the city self, looking from window to lighted
When the squares and checks of faintly yellow light
Shine at night, upon a huge dim board and slab-like tombs,
Hiding many lives. It is the city consciousness
Which sees and says: more: more and more: always more.

Delmore Schwartz


Anonymous said...

Thanks Dude,you are a kindred Dude.
You may like Carol Anne Duffy the English poet laureate.
God Bless,

Palomasea said...


Hello to you, my friend. I am loving this poem and I will research more on this writer. Thank you!!

- Irina

Anonymous said...

Now All Roads Lead to France: The Last Years of Edward Thomas.
By Matthew Hollis.
You should read it.It is highlights the The Geogian movement that Frost sort after.
Amazon have it.

The Georgian poets were, by the strictest definition, those whose works appeared in a series of five anthologies named Georgian Poetry, published by Harold Monro and edited by Edward Marsh. The first volume contained poems written in 1911 and 1912. The poets included Edmund Blunden, Rupert Brooke, Robert Graves, D. H. Lawrence, Walter de la Mare and Siegfried Sassoon. The period of publication was sandwiched between the Victorian era, with its strict classicism, and Modernism, with its strident rejection of pure aestheticism. The common features of the poems in these publications were romanticism, sentimentality and hedonism. Later critics have attempted to revise the definition of the term as a description of poetic style, thereby including some new names or excluding some old ones.