Happy Birthday Louise Bogan!

Amongst those of us with an interest in poetry will likely be more than a few who today will be honoring, in a myriad of ways, the birth of poet Louise Bogan.

Her life in letters offered much in the way of distinctions (she passed away in 1970); perhaps the two most notable being her long career as poetry editor for The New Yorker, and her appointment as the fourth Poet Laureate to the Library of Congress.

As but one indicator of the depth and passion of her lyrical mind, I offer the following quote; intensely beautiful, and I think very much applicable to not just the arts, but the art of making wine:

“Innocence of heart and violence of feeling are necessary in any kind of superior achievement: The arts cannot exist without them.”

As an offering of poetry, I present Bogan’s “To Wine”:

Cup, ignorant and cruel,

Take from the mandate, love,

Its urgency to prove

Unfaith, renewal.

Take from the mind its loss:

The lipless dead that lie

Face upward in the earth,

Strong hand and slender thigh;

Return to the vein

All that is worth

Grief. Give that beat again.

Categories: Wine & Poetry

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1 reply

  1. Ummmmmm I don’t know. It is very deep for me. I prefer something in a lighter vein, such as
    ‘There are many good reasons for drinking
    and one has just entered my head
    If a Man cannot drink when he’s living
    How the heck can he drink when he’s dead?

    Or the classic from Benjamin H Burt (An American, I believe)

    One evening last October, When I was far from sober
    And carrying home a load with manly pride;
    My feet began to stutter So I lay down in the gutter
    And a pig came up and lay down by my side.

    Said I “’tis finest weather when good fellows get together”
    When a lady passing by was heard to say
    “You can tell a man who boozes by the company he chooses”
    So the pig got up and slowly walked away

    Now that is poetic!
    Tom Wise

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