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From Hilaire Belloc's Sonnets of the Month

The winter moon has such a quiet car
That all the winter nights are dumb with rest.
She drives the gradual dark with drooping crest,
And dreams go wandering from her drowsy star.
Because the nights are silent, do not wake:
But there shall tremble through the general earth,
And over you, a quickening and a birth.
The sun is near the hill-tops for your sake.

The latest born of all the days shall creep
To kiss the tender eyelids of the year;
And you shall wake, grown young with perfect sleep,
And smile at the new world, and make it dear
With living murmurs more than dreams are deep.
Silence is dead, my Dawn; the morning's here.

on 2012-03-21 10:10 am (UTC)
Posted by [identity profile]
I really must get hold of a Belloc compendium. I suspect his is a voice that will really appeal to me. I love his old mate Chesterton ('the man who was Thursday' and 'napoleon of Notting Hill' are two of my favourite books of all time) but I've never picked up any Belloc!

on 2012-03-21 03:33 pm (UTC)
Posted by [identity profile]
I love "Thursday" too, though I haven't yet read "The Napoleon Of Notting Hill". Belloc has many of the same virtues and flaws as Chesterton, though his strengths are more lyric and less epic. When he gets religious, he's whiny where Chesterton's bombastic, and a couple of the poems have some sadly anti-Semitic lines. Still, I think it's worth winnowing through the chaff for the good bits.

Have you read Lines to a Don (, his lampoon of someone who gave Chesterton a bad review?


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