Canal Bank Walk
Leafy-with-love banks and the green waters of the canal
Pouring redemption for me, that I do
The will of God, wallow in the habitual, the banal,
Grow with nature again as before I grew.
The bright stick trapped, the breeze adding a third
Party to the couple kissing on an old seat,
And a bird gathering materials for the nest for the Word
Eloquently new and abandoned to its delirious beat.
O unworn world enrapture me, encapture me in a web
Of fabulous grass and eternal voices by a beech,
Feed the gaping need of my senses, give me ad lib
To pray unselfconsciously with overflowing speech
For this soul needs to be honoured with a new dress woven
From green and blue things and arguments that cannot be proven.
Patrick Kavanagh 1960
Today is my sister's birthday, and I could wish her nothing more than the passion found in this poem. It is a love sonnet, in its way. Not directed at any single person, it rushes headlong into the world of the senses and experience. There are Romantic overtones here - a man walking alone, commenting on his surroundings, wishing to imbibe nature, to live on the edges of his nerves. Kavanagh updates the traditional lyric format, though, in giving the poem a pulse, at once musical and corporal.
** I will finish this poem up within the next several days - Happy Birthday Emmy, and Happy Valentines Day to the rest! **