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Saturday, February 10, 2018

Books as dreams or swords

“All books are either dreams or swords, you can cut, or you can drug, with words.” – Amy Lowell

Pulitzer Prize winner Lowell, whose poetry falls into what has been labeled “The Imagest School,” was born on Feb. 9, 1874, one of the many members of Massachusetts’ Lowell family to make an impact on writing and education.  

Though she sometimes wrote sonnets, Lowell was an early adherent of the "free verse” method of poetry and one of its major champions.       Although she didn’t start writing poetry until age 28 and died young (at age 51), Lowell produced more than a dozen major books of poetry. For a comprehensive look, check out The Complete Poetical Works of Amy Lowell, published in 1955.  For Saturday’s Poem, here is Lowell’s 

WHEN night drifts along the streets of the city,
And sifts down between the uneven roofs,
My mind begins to peek and peer.
It plays at ball in old, blue Chinese gardens,
And shakes wrought dice-cups in Pagan temples,
Amid the broken flutings of white pillars.
It dances with purple and yellow crocuses in its hair,
And its feet shine as they flutter over drenched grasses.
How light and laughing my mind is,
When all the good folk have put out their bed-room candles,
And the city is still!

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