Sunday, February 19, 2012

IN A DISUSED GRAVEYARD by Robert Frost

The living come with grassy tread
To read the gravestones on the hill;
The graveyard draws the living still,
But never anymore the dead.
The verses in it say and say:
"The ones who living come today
To read the stones and go away
Tomorrow dead will come to stay."
So sure of death the marbles rhyme,
Yet can't help marking all the time
How no one dead will seem to come.
What is it men are shrinking from?
It would be easy to be clever
And tell the stones: Men hate to die
And have stopped dying now forever.
I think they would believe the lie.


Today I had what I now call "The Classical Jolt" reading this poem by Frost, in particular with the last four lines. Once more I thought that poems can hit at once a target in the reader, actually I was "feeling" the last four lines "arriving" before reading them.

3 comments:

Dave King said...

I know what you mean by " feeling the lines arriving" before reaching them. this happens to me with certain poems that I know well. Some of Eliot's particularly.

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lukemcfadden said...

yes I think i understand too about that sense of lines arriving beforehand. I came across it with a novel my wife received from a former colleague, an -epublished book i wouldn't normally seek out to read but which blew me away with its sensitivity and vulnerability. (The author established a blog but I haven't visited it but will on http://theguestinformant.wordpress.com/) that same sense of literary de ja vue. And yes I had the same experience when reading Eliot.