Guest poem submitted by VG:
(Poem #1530) The Donkey
When fishes flew and forests walked And figs grew upon thorn, Some moment when the moon was blood Then surely I was born; With monstrous head and sickening cry And ears like errant wings, The devil's walking parody On all four-footed things. The tattered outlaw of the earth, Of ancient crooked will; Starve, scourge, deride me: I am dumb, I keep my secret still. Fools! For I also had my hour; One far fierce hour and sweet: There was a shout about my ears, And palms before my feet.
At the age of eight, my eldest sister decided to teach me (aged six) and our two other sisters (aged four and eight) this poem. Why she chose this poem I don't know, nor do I remember how she went about teaching it. All I know is that she was eminently successful, and even now we can recite the poem perfectly. At six, I had no idea what the poem was about (though I recited it with pride and passion, excited by the idea of flying fish and a moon of blood), but because I learned it so early, the fierce beauty of the poem is now enriched with nostalgia for me. VG.