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Mansfield, Katherine

· KATHERINE MANSFIELD: A FEW RULES FOR BEGINNERS · KATHERINE MANSFIELD: SEA · KATHERINE MANSFIELD: SLEEPING TOGETHER · KATHERINE MANSFIELD: WHEN I WAS A BIRD · KATHERINE MANSFIELD: A DAY IN BED · Katherine Mansfield: A Little Boy’s Dream · Katherine Mansfield: A Little Boy’s Dream · Katherine Mansfield: The Black Monkey · Katherine Mansfield: Covering Wings · Katherine Mansfield: 2 Poems · Katherine Mansfield: 3 Poems

KATHERINE MANSFIELD: A FEW RULES FOR BEGINNERS

 mansfieldkath112

Katherine Mansfield
(1888 – 1923)

A Few Rules for Beginners

Babies must not eat the coal
And they must not make grimaces,
Nor in party dresses roll
And must never black their faces.

They must learn that pointing’s rude,
They must sit quite still at table,
And must always eat the food
Put before them—if they’re able.

If they fall, they must not cry,
Though it’s known how painful this is;
No—there’s always Mother by
Who will comfort them with kisses.

Katherine Mansfield poetry
fleursdumal.nl magazine

More in: Katherine Mansfield, Mansfield, Katherine


KATHERINE MANSFIELD: SEA

 mansfieldkath112

Katherine Mansfield
(1888 – 1923)

Sea

The Sea called—I lay on the rocks and said:
“I am come.”
She mocked and showed her teeth,
Stretching out her long green arms.
“Go away!” she thundered.
“Then tell me what I am to do,” I begged.
“If I leave you, you will not be silent,
But cry my name in the cities
And wistfully entreat me in the plains and forests;
All else I forsake to come to you—what must I do?”
“Never have I uttered your name,” snarled the Sea.
“There is no more of me in your body
Than the little salt tears you are frightened of shedding.
What can you know of my love on your brown rock
pillow….
Come closer.”

Katherine Mansfield poetry
fleursdumal.nl magazine

More in: Archive M-N, Katherine Mansfield, Mansfield, Katherine


KATHERINE MANSFIELD: SLEEPING TOGETHER

 mansfieldkath111

Katherine Mansfield
(1888 – 1923)

Sleeping Together

Sleeping together… how tired you were…
How warm our room… how the firelight spread
On walls and ceiling and great white bed!
We spoke in whispers as children do,
And now it was I—and then it was you
Slept a moment, to wake—”My dear,
I’m not at all sleepy,” one of us said….

Was it a thousand years ago?
I woke in your arms—you were sound asleep—
And heard the pattering sound of sheep.
Softly I slipped to the floor and crept
To the curtained window, then, while you slept,
I watched the sheep pass by in the snow.

O flock of thoughts with their shepherd Fear
Shivering, desolate, out in the cold,
That entered into my heart to fold!

A thousand years… was it yesterday
When we two children of far away,
Clinging close in the darkness, lay
Sleeping together?… How tired you were….

Katherine Mansfield poetry
fleursdumal.nl magazine

More in: Archive M-N, Katherine Mansfield, Mansfield, Katherine


KATHERINE MANSFIELD: WHEN I WAS A BIRD

mansfieldkath115

Katherine Mansfield
(1888 – 1923)

When I was a Bird

I climbed up the karaka tree
Into a nest all made of leaves
But soft as feathers.
I made up a song that went on singing all by itself
And hadn’t any words, but got sad at the end.
There were daisies in the grass under the tree.
I said just to try them:
“I’ll bite off your heads and give them to my little
children to eat.”
But they didn’t believe I was a bird;
They stayed quite open.
The sky was like a blue nest with white feathers
And the sun was the mother bird keeping it warm.
That’s what my song said: though it hadn’t any words.
Little Brother came up the patch, wheeling his barrow.
I made my dress into wings and kept very quiet.
Then when he was quite near I said: “Sweet, sweet!”
For a moment he looked quite startled;
Then he said: “Pooh, you’re not a bird; I can see
your legs.”
But the daisies didn’t really matter,
And Little Brother didn’t really matter;
I felt just like a bird.

Katherine Mansfield poetry
fleursdumal.nl magazine

More in: Archive M-N, Katherine Mansfield, Mansfield, Katherine


KATHERINE MANSFIELD: A DAY IN BED

mansfieldkath111

Katherine Mansfield
(1888 – 1923)

A Day in Bed

I wish I had not got a cold,
The wind is big and wild,
I wish that I was very old,
Not just a little child.

Somehow the day is very long
Just keeping here, alone;
I do not like the big wind’s song,
He’s growling for a bone

He’s like an awful dog we had
Who used to creep around
And snatch at things—he was so bad,
With just that horrid sound.

I’m sitting up and nurse has made
Me wear a woolly shawl;
I wish I was not so afraid;
It’s horrid to be small.

It really feels quite like a day
Since I have had my tea;
P’raps everybody’s gone away
And just forgotten me.

And oh! I cannot go to sleep
Although I am in bed.
The wind keeps going creepy-creep
And waiting to be fed.

Katherine Mansfield poetry
fleursdumal.nl magazine

More in: Archive M-N, Katherine Mansfield, Mansfield, Katherine


Katherine Mansfield: A Little Boy’s Dream

- mansfield kath

Katherine Mansfield

(1888-1923)

 

A Little Boy’s Dream

 

To and fro, to and fro

In my little boat I go

Sailing far across the sea

All alone, just little me.

And the sea is big and strong

And the journey very long.

To and fro, to and fro

In my little boat I go.

 

Sea and sky, sea and sky,

Quietly on the deck I lie,

Having just a little rest.

I have really done my best

In an awful pirate fight,

But we captured them all right.

Sea and sky, sea and sky,

Quietly on the deck I lie–

 

Far away, far away

From my home and from my play,

On a journey without end

Only with the sea for friend

And the fishes in the sea.

But they swim away from me

Far away, far away

From my home and from my play.

 

Then he cried “O Mother dear.”

And he woke and sat upright,

They were in the rocking chair,

Mother’s arms around him–tight.

 

Katherine Mansfield poetry

fleursdumal.nl magazine

More in: Archive M-N, Mansfield, Katherine


Katherine Mansfield: A Little Boy’s Dream

Katherine Mansfield

(1888-1923)

A Little Boy’s Dream

 

To and fro, to and fro

In my little boat I go

Sailing far across the sea

All alone, just little me.

And the sea is big and strong

And the journey very long.

To and fro, to and fro

In my little boat I go.

 

Sea and sky, sea and sky,

Quietly on the deck I lie,

Having just a little rest.

I have really done my best

In an awful pirate fight,

But we cdaptured them all right.

Sea and sky, sea and sky,

Quietly on the deck I lie–

 

Far away, far away

From my home and from my play,

On a journey without end

Only with the sea for friend

And the fishes in the sea.

But they swim away from me

Far away, far away

From my home and from my play.

 

Then he cried “O Mother dear.”

And he woke and sat upright,

They were in the rocking chair,

Mother’s arms around him–tight.

 

Katherine Mansfield poetry

kempis.nl poetry magazine

More in: Archive M-N, Katherine Mansfield, Mansfield, Katherine


Katherine Mansfield: The Black Monkey

Katherine Mansfield

(1888-1923)

 

The Black Monkey

My Babbles has a nasty knack
Of keeping monkeys on her back.
A great big black one comes and swings
Right on her sash or pinny strings.
It is a horrid thing and wild
And makes her such a naughty child.

She comes and stands beside my chair
With almost an offended air
And says:—”Oh, Father, why can’t I?”
And stamps her foot and starts to cry—
I look at Mother in dismay…
What little girl is this, to-day?

She throws about her nicest toys
And makes a truly dreadful noise
Till Mother rises from her place
With quite a Sunday churchy face
And Babbles silently is led
Into the dark and her own bed.

Never a kiss or one Goodnight,
Never a glimpse of candle light.
Oh, how the monkey simply flies!
Oh, how poor Babbles calls and cries,
Runs from the room with might and main,
“Father dear, I am good again.”

When she is sitting on my knee
Snuggled quite close and kissing me,
Babbles and I, we think the same—
Why, that the monkey never came
Only a terrible dream maybe…
What did she have for evening tea?

 

 

Katherine Manfield poetry

fleursdumal.nl  m a g a z i n e

More in: Katherine Mansfield, Mansfield, Katherine


Katherine Mansfield: Covering Wings

Katherine Mansfield

(1888-1923)

 

Covering Wings

Love! Love! Your tenderness,
Your beautiful, watchful ways
Grasp me, fold me, cover me;
I lie in a kind of daze,
Neither asleep nor yet awake,
Neither a bud nor flower.
Brings to-morrow
Joy or sorrow,
The black or the golden hour?

Love! Love! You pity me so!
Chide me, scold me—cry,
“Submit—submit!  You must not fight!”
What may I do, then?  Die?
But, oh my horror of quiet beds!
How can I longer stay!
“One to be ready,
Two to be steady,
Three to be off and away!”

Darling heart—your gravity!
Your sorrowful, mournful gaze—
“Two bleached roads lie under the moon,
At the parting of the ways.”
But the tiny, tree-thatched, narrow lane,
Isn’t it yours and mine?
The blue-bells ring
Hey, ding-a-ding, ding!
And buds are thick on the vine.
Love! Love! Grief of my heart!
As a tree droops over a stream
You hush me, lull me, dark me,
The shadow hiding the gleam.
Your drooping and tragical boughs of grace
Are heavy as though with rain.
Run! Run!
Into the sun!
Let us be children again.

 

Katherine Mansfield poetry

fleursdumal.nl magazine

More in: Katherine Mansfield, Mansfield, Katherine


Katherine Mansfield: 2 Poems

Katherine Mansfield

(1888-1923)

 

The Man with the Wooden Leg


There was a man lived quite near us;
He had a wooden leg and a goldfinch in a green cage.
His name was Farkey Anderson,
And he’d been in a war to get his leg.
We were very sad about him,
Because he had such a beautiful smile
And was such a big man to live in a very small house.
When he walked on the road his leg did not matter
          so much;
But when he walked in his little house
It made an ugly noise.
Little Brother said his goldfinch sang the loudest of
          all birds,
So that he should not hear his poor leg
And feel too sorry about it.

 

The Secret

In the profoundest ocean
There is a rainbow shell,
It is always there, shining most stilly
Under the greatest storm waves
That the old Greek called "ripples of laughter."
As you listen, the rainbow shell
Sings—in the profoundest ocean.
It is always there, singing most silently!

 

Katherine Mansfield poetry

k e m p i s   p o e t r y   m a g a z i n e

More in: Mansfield, Katherine


Katherine Mansfield: 3 Poems

Katherine Mansfield

(1888-1923)

 

A Day in Bed

I wish I had not got a cold,
The wind is big and wild,
I wish that I was very old,
Not just a little child.

Somehow the day is very long
Just keeping here, alone;
I do not like the big wind’s song,
He’s growling for a bone

He’s like an awful dog we had
Who used to creep around
And snatch at things—he was so bad,
With just that horrid sound.

I’m sitting up and nurse has made
Me wear a woolly shawl;
I wish I was not so afraid;
It’s horrid to be small.

It really feels quite like a day
Since I have had my tea;
P’raps everybody’s gone away
And just forgotten me.

And oh!  I cannot go to sleep
Although I am in bed.
The wind keeps going creepy-creep
And waiting to be fed.

 

A Fine Day

After all the rain, the sun
Shines on hill and grassy mead;
Fly into the garden, child,
You are very glad indeed.

For the days have been so dull,
Oh, so special dark and drear,
That you told me, "Mr. Sun
Has forgotten we live here."

Dew upon the lily lawn,
Dew upon the garden beds;
Daintly from all the leaves
Pop the little primrose heads.

And the violets in the copse
With their parasols of green
Take a little peek at you;
They’re the bluest you have seen.

On the lilac tree a bird
Singing first a little not,
Then a burst of happy song
Bubbles in his lifted throat.

O the sun, the comfy sun!
This the song that you must sing,
"Thank you for the birds, the flowers,
Thank you, sun, for everything."

 

A Few Rules for Beginners

Babies must not eat the coal
And they must not make grimaces,
Nor in party dresses roll
And must never black their faces.

They must learn that pointing’s rude,
They must sit quite still at table,
And must always eat the food
Put before them—if they’re able.

If they fall, they must not cry,
Though it’s known how painful this is;
No—there’s always Mother by
Who will comfort them with kisses.


Katherine Mansfield poetry

k e m p i s   p o e t r y   m a g a z i n e

More in: Mansfield, Katherine


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