Monday, 23 January 2012

He wishes for the cloths of heaven

Had I the heavens embroidered cloths,
Enwrought with golden and silver light,
The blue and the dim and the dark cloths,
Of night and light and the half light,
I would spread the cloths under your feet.
But I, being poor, have only my dreams;
I have spread my dreams under your feet;
Tread softly because you tread on my dreams
A friend of mine recently recounted that she once received a postcard from me, sent from Ireland, with this poem written out on the back. She says I must have been about 13 or 14 when I sent it. Apart from this proving that I have never quite got the hang of the "postcard - wish you were here" genre, it has reminded me how much I love this poem. Over the years I have had a strange relationship to it - it is often in my dreams. Sometimes it gets stuck in my head, a bit like a pop song, but I have never known anyone else who gets 'stuck record syndrome' with poetry so I have never found a cure to successfully banish it.

'Tread Softly' is back with a vengeance through my thoughts and dreams, it is so powerful and the words are true. It is impossible to give or receive anything genuinely unless it is wrapped in the vulnerability of prayers, hopes and dreams.


Peter Hunter said...

Remind me to tell you the story of my association with this poem, which I also love, some time. Beautiful post.

mary camilleri said...

Oh I get it a lot, especially with W H Auden - there's no place for us my dear' - Tread softly was on a poster in my sister's bedroom when I was little. I never knew it was yeats