Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Verse of the Day - Ted Hughes

The wind has been buffeting the house for much of the night, not relentlessly but intermittently. There's a coldness in corners and a listnessness. I don't want to sleep but I don't want to be awake. Out there somewhere, something is slipping away and I can't quite get a grasp on it on this dark and elusive night that's neither winter nor spring.

Finding a poem to do justice to the wind was no easy task. When all else fails you can rely on Ted Hughes.

Wind by Ted Hughes

This house has been far out at sea all night,
The woods crashing through darkness, the booming hills,
Winds stampeding the fields under the window
Floundering black astride and blinding wet

Till day rose; then under an orange sky
The hills had new places, and wind wielded
Blade-light, luminous black and emerald,
Flexing like the lens of a mad eye.

At noon I scaled along the house-side as far as
The coal-house door. Once I looked up -
Through the brunt wind that dented the balls of my eyes
The tent of the hills drummed and strained its guyrope,

The fields quivering, the skyline a grimace,
At any second to bang and vanish with a flap;
The wind flung a magpie away and a black-
Back gull bent like an iron bar slowly. The house

Rang like some fine green goblet in the note
That any second would shatter it. Now deep
In chairs, in front of the great fire, we grip
Our hearts and cannot entertain book, thought,

Or each other. We watch the fire blazing,
And feel the roots of the house move, but sit on,
Seeing the window tremble to come in,
Hearing the stones cry out under the horizons.


  1. Very powerful poem. He really makes you feel it, hear it, see it. I was a little disturbed by the thought of a wind that is strong enough dent the balls of eyes, though! HA! :-)

  2. for sure Daisy, that is a bit strong eh?

  3. I think your opening paragraph did justice to the wind. ;)