Friday, April 22, 2011

Poetry Friday: That's the Difference

I'm conflicted. It's Good Friday and my first instinct is to repost Gerard Manley Hopkins's exquisite poem, Carrion Comfort. Hopkins writes compressed agony like no one else.

Not, I'll not, carrion comfort, Despair, not feast on thee;
Not untwist — slack they may be — these last strands of man
In me ór, most weary, cry I can no more. I can;
Can something, hope, wish day come, not choose not to be.
But ah, but O thou terrible, why wouldst thou rude on me
Thy wring-world right foot rock? lay a lionlimb against me? scan
With darksome devouring eyes my bruisèd bones? and fan,
O in turns of tempest, me heaped there; me frantic to avoid thee and flee?

 (See here for the rest of the poem and my post of three years ago.)

My other instinct is to sing loudly this darkly hilarious Lyle Lovett song:

God Will

Who keeps on trusting you
When you've been cheating

And spending your nights on the town
And who keeps on saying that he still wants you

When you're through running around
And who keeps on loving you

When you've been lying
Saying things ain't what they seem

God does
But I don't

God will
But I won't

And that's the difference
Between God and me

So who says he'll forgive you
And says that he'll miss you
And dream of your sweet memory

God does
But I don't

God will
But I won't

And that's the difference
Between God and me

I don't think that one will make it into a hymnal any time soon.

What else to do but call this a Good Poetry Friday?

The roundup today is hosted by BookAunt.


  1. You, my friend, are a woman of many parts. Lyle Lovett and GMH. Whoa. Not a juxtaposition I had seen coming, and yet... and yet...

    It works. It's YOU.

    Happy Good Poetry Friday, bud.

  2. you have an uncanny eye and ear. that's all i can say.

    and a good poetry friday to you.

  3. Hi, Sara...I just had one of the best laughs I have had in good for the soul. As I moved from the Lovett words to your phrase about it not making a hymnal anytime soon, well the funny bone was tickled! And I am delighted to have discovered Carrion Comfort and to have read your post of three years ago...thank you. Happy Easter!

  4. *shakes her head and grins*

    Lyle and GM. Only you could pull this off.


R-E-S-P-E-C-T (or you will be deleted)

You can receive followup comments to this conversation by checking the "notify me" box below the comment window.