Friday 27 March 2009


Now I am quietly waiting for
the catastrophe of my personality
to seem beautiful again,
and interesting, and modern.

The country is grey and
brown and white in trees,
snows and skies of laughter
always diminishing, less funny
not just darker, not just grey.

It may be the coldest day of
the year, what does he think of
that? I mean, what do I? And if I do,
perhaps I am myself again.

From Frank O'Hara 'Mayakovsky' published in Meditations in an Emergency

NB: I fell in love with the poetry of Frank O'Hara many years ago, and stupidly forgot all about him until I was watching Mad Men a few weeks ago, since when I've unearthed my copy and been reading and re-reading: as I've just written on Tania's blog, I was trying to write a post about my father, who is very ill, and found I couldn't and all I had left were these beautiful lines.


Sinda said...

Sending good thoughts from across the way -

Mrs Jones said...

I love Don Draper....

Tania Kindersley said...

Thank you thank you. I LOVE this man. Knew nothing of him. Have put entire post up on blog about it.

Miss Whistle said...

That's an incredibly beautiful, spare poem.

Red Shoes said...

Mmm, beautiful, solemn, poignant. Must find more.

Sending prayers for your father.

Late Developer said...

Very, very sorry to hear about your father, hang in there. Poem is beautiful x

Anonymous said...

So very sorry to hear about your father. I shall be thinking of you both

So Lovely said...

I knew nothing of him either. Beautiful poem - I now must "google" him too.

Tania Kindersley said...

Dearest Mrs Trefusis - so very sorry about your father. I am thinking of you both.

A million thanks for lovely words about Backwards that I see you have put up on yr blog. To take time for such generosity in a period of sadness is a mark of high character.

Elsie said...

Dear Mrs. Trefusis -
Thank you so much for posting the poem. It has helped me through this afternoon. Very sorry to hear of father's illness. Take care of yourself.

Cassandra said...

My thoughts are with you, Mrs T xxx

Welsh Girl said...

I am sending positive thoughts your father's way. I do hope he gets better soon. The poem is beautifully sparse. How is it that it is always poetry that really captures the essence of a thing, never prose?

screamish said...

beautiful poem. bon courage..

Anonymous said...

oh dear - sorry to hear of your dad's ill health. the poem is so beautiful, though. thanks for sharing it.

katyboo1 said...

lots and lots of love to you and your father. I hope all works out for the best.

Beautiful words.

I always go for Raymond Carver at times like this.

Anonymous said...

That's beautiful. Never read him before, but I certainly want to read more of him now.