SHELDON CHENEY DES IMAGISTES «Kal xefva SixsXi, /.al iv AlTvatottotv sxatl^ sv i6(jt, xal jJiéXoç yhs t6 Awpiov.)) ExiToéçtoç Biwvoç “And she also was of. Des Imagistes: An Anthology (). by Elyse Graham. When Ezra Pound arrived in London in , he began arranging introductions to all the literary people. On 2 March Des Imagistes was published. Des Imagistes was primarily an anthology of poetry by Ezra Pound, Hilda Doolittle (HD), and.

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Search the history of over billion web pages on the Internet. Cold lips that sing no more, and withered wreaths, Regretful eyes, and drooping breasts and wings — Symbols of ancient songs Mournfully passing Down to the great white surges, Watched of none Save the f rail sea-birds And the lithe pale girls, Daughters of Okeanus.

And the songs pass From the green land Which lies upon the waves as a leaf On the flowers of hyacinth ; And they pass from the waters, The manifold winds and the dim moon, And they come, Silently winging through soft Kimmerian dusk, To the quiet level lands That she keeps for us ail, That she wrought for us ail for sleep In the silver days of the earth’s dawning — Proserpina, daughter of Zeus.

And we turn from the Kuprian’s breasts, And we turn from thee, Phoibos Apollon, And we turn from the music of old And the hills that we loved and the meads, And we turn from the fiery day, And the lips that were over sweet; For silently Brushing the fields with red-shod feet, With purple robe Searing the flowers as with a sudden flame, Death, Thou hast corne upon us.

And of ail the ancient songs Passing to the swallow-blue halls By the dark streams of Persephone, This only remains: That we turn to thee, Death, That we turn to thee, singing One last song.

And silently, And with slow feet approaching, And with bowed head and unlit eyes, We kneel before thee: Use no more speech. And through it ail I see your pale Greek face; Tenderness makes me as eager as a little child To love you You morsel left half cold on Caesar’s plate.

The soft notes Feed upon the wound. Where wert thou born O thou woe That consumest my life? Toothed wind of the seas, No man knows thy beginning.

As a bird with strong claws Thou woundest me, O beautiful sorrow. Swallow-fleet, Sea-child cold from waves, Slight reed that sang so blithely in the wind, White cloud the white sun kissed into the air; Pan mourns for you.

White limbs, white song, Pan mourns for you. Straight and slim art thou As a marble phallus; Thy face is the face of Isis Carven As she is carven in basait. She has corne from beneath the trees, Moving within the mist, A floating leaf. The waxed reeds and the double pipe Clamour about me; The hot wind swirls Throiigh the red pine trunks. The touch of their shagged curled fur And blunt horns!

She shrinks from the cold shower — Afraid, afraid! Let the Maenads break through the niyrtles And the boughs of the rohododaphnai. Let them tear the quick deers’ flesh. Ah, the cruel, exquisite fingers! Your breasts are cold sea-ripples, But they smell of the warm grasses. Beautiful are your bodies, O Maenads, Beautiful the sudden folds, The vanishing curves of the white linen About you. Hear the rich laughter of the forest, The cymbals, The trampling of the panisks and the centaurs.


And now she is first among the Lydian women As the mighty sun, the rose-fingered moon, Beside the great stars. And the light fades from the bitter sea And in like manner from the rich-blossoming earth; And the dew is shed upon the flowers, Rose and soft meadow-sweet And many-coloured melilote.

Aye, than Argestes Scattering the broken leaves. Far off over the leagites of it, The wind, Playing on the wide shore, Piles little ridges, And the great waves Break over it.

Dubious, Facing three ways, Welcoming wayfarers, He whom the sea-orchard Shelters from the west, From the east Weathers sea-wind; Fronts the great dunes. Heu, It whips round my ankles!

Des Imagistes

Apples on the small trees Are hard, Imagistex small, Too late ripened By a desperate sun That struggles through sea-mist. The boughs of the trees Are twisted By many bafflings; Twisted are The small-leafed boughs. But the shadow of them Is not the shadow of the mast head Nor of the torn imagistee. The honey-seeking, golden-banded, The yellow swarm Was not more fleet than I, Spare us from loveliness!

And 1 fell prostrate, Crying, Thou hast flayed us with imagidtes blossoms; Spare us the beauty Of fruit-trees! The honey-seeking Paused not, The air thundered their song, And I alone was prostrate. The fallen hazel-nuts, Stripped late of their green sheaths, 24 The grapes, red-purple, Their berries Dripping with wine, Pomegranates already broken, And shrunken fig, And quinces untouched, I imgaistes thee as offering, H. For she lies panting, Drawing sharp breath, Broken with harsh sobs, She, Hyella, Whom no god pitieth.

II Dryads, Haunting the groves, Nereids, Who dwell in wet caves, For ail the whitish leaves of olive-branch, And early roses, And imagistea wreathes, woven gold berries, Which she once brought to your altars, 26 Bear now ripe fruits from Arcadia, And Assyrian wine To shatter her imagisttes.

The light of her face falls from its flower, As a hyacinth, Hidden in a far valley, Perishes upon burnt grass. Pales, Bring gifts, Bring your Phoenician stuffs, Imabistes do you, fleet-footed nymphs, Bring offerings, Illyrian iris, And a branch of shrub.

Gone the dear chatterer. But as the moon creeps slowly over the tree-tops among the stars, I think of her and the glow her passing sheds on men. London, my beautiful, I will climb into the branches to the moonlit tree-tops, that my blood may be cooled by the wind. I know the dark of night is ail around me; my eyes are closed, and I am half asleep. My wife breathes gently at my side. But once again this old dream is within me, and I am on the threshold waiting, wondering, pleased, and fearful.

Where do those doors lead, what rooms lie beyond them? But my baby moves and tosses from side to side, and her need calls me to her. Now I stand awake, unseeing, in the dark, and I move towards her cot. I shall not reach her. There is no direction. I imagises walk on.

Full text of “Des imagistes, an anthology”

In a wood, watching the shadow of a bird leap from frond to frond of bracken, I am immortal. Flint 33 IV The grass is beneath my head; and I gaze at the thronging stars in the night. I am overwhelmed, and afraid. Each leaf of the aspen is caressed by the wind, and each is crying. And the perfume of invisible roses deepens the anguish. Let a strong mesh of roots feed the crimson of roses upon my heart; and then fold over the hoUow where ail the pain was.

Over the green cold leaves and the rippled silver and the tarnished copper of its neck and beak, toward the deep black water beneath the arches, the swan floats slowly. Into the dark of the arch the swan floats and into the black depth of my sorrow it bears a white rose of flame.


I am weary with love, and thy lips Are res popies. Give me therefore thy lips That I may know sleep. Damp smell the ferns in tunnels of stone, Where trickle and plash the fountains, Marble fountains, yellowed with much water.

Splashing down moss-tarnished steps It falls, the water; And the air is throbbing with it; With its gurgling and running; With its leaping, and deep, cool murmur. And I wished for night and you. I wanted to see you in the swimming-pool, White and shining in the silver-flecked water.

While the moon rode over the garden, High in the arch of night, And the scent of the lilacs was heavy with stillness. Night and the water, and you in your whiteness, bathing! Give me hand for the dances, Ripples at Philse, imaagistes and out, And lips, my Lesbian, Wall flowers that once were flame. Your hair is my Carthage And my arms the bow And our words arrows To shoot the stars, Who from that misty sea Swarm to destroy us. O prayers in the dark!

Arrogant, in black armour, imagisres them stand, Disdaining the rains, ces fluttering whips, the Char- ioteers.

Des imagistes, an anthology

They cry into the night their battle name: I moan in sleep when I hear afar their whirling laughter. They cleave the gloom of dreams, a bHnding flame, Clanging, clanging upon the heart as upon an anvil.

They corne shaking in triumph their long grey hair: They corne out of the sea and run shouting by the shore. Gods of the winged shoe! With them the silver hounds sniffing the trace of air! Slow on the leash, pallid the leasfi-men!

I will walk in the glade, I will corne out of the new thicket and accost the procession of maidens. A wet leaf that clings to the threshold. It rains, it rains, From gutters and drains And gargoyles and gables: It drips from the tables That tell us the tolls upon grains, Oxen, asses, sheep, turkeys and fowls Set into the rain-soaked wall Of the old Town Hall.

The poor saint on the fountain!

Supported by plaques of the giver To whom we’re beholden; His name was de Sales And his wife’s name von Mangel. He stands on a dragon On a bail, on a column Gazing up at the vines on the mountain: And his falchion is golden And his wings are ail golden. He bears golden scales And in spite of the coils of his dragon, without hint of alarm or invective Looks up at the mists on the mountain.

Now what saint or archangel Stands winged on a dragon, Bearing golden scales and a broad bladed sword ail golden?

Des Imagistes | poetry collection |

The poor saint on the fountain On top of his column Gazes up sad and solemn. But is it towards the top of the mountain Where the spindrifty haze is That he gazes? Or is it into the casement Where the girl sits sewing? And from eight leaden pipes in the bail he stands on That bas eigbt leaden and copper bands on, Tbere gurgle and drain Eight driblets of water down into the basin.

It’s grey as at dawn, And the owls, grey and fawn, Call from the little town hall With its arch in the wall, Where the fire-hooks are stored.