Poetry for the week

Another riposte to Andrew Marvell. Thanks to wolfangel, whose post also led me to The Wondering Minstrels. Looks fun for gentle wandering and picking poems at random.

I just couldn’t resist this one

Coffee In Heaven

   You’ll be greeted
by a nice cup of coffee
when you get to heaven
and strains of angelic harmony.

   But wouldn’t you be devastated
if they only serve decaffeinated
while from the percolators of hell

   your soul was assaulted
by Satan’s fresh espresso smell?

— John Agard

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3 Responses to Poetry for the week

  1. Chris Brooke says:

    That’s very good.

    Another poem with a heaven-and-hell theme I was thinking of the other day is this one, by Wendy Cope:

    The Cricketing Versions (for Simon Rae)

    “There isn’t much cricket in the Cromwell play.” (overheard at a dinner party)

    There isn’t much cricket in Hamlet either,
    There isn’t much cricket in Lear.
    I don’t think there’s any in Paradise Lost
    I haven’t a copy right here.

    But I like to imagine the cricketing versions –
    Laertes goes out to bat
    And instead of claiming a palpable hit,
    The prince gives a cry of ‘Howzat!’

    While elsewhere the nastier daughters of Lear
    (Both women cricketers) scheme
    To keep their talented younger sister
    Out of the England team,

    And up in the happy realms of light
    When Satan is out (great catch!)
    His team and the winners sit down together
    For sandwiches after the match.

    Although there are some English writers
    Who feature the red leather ball,
    You could make a long list of the players and the books
    In which there’s no cricket at all.

    To be perfectly honest, I like them that way –
    The absence of cricket is fine.
    But if you prefer work that includes it, please note
    That now there’s some cricket in mine.

    (A note – subsequently added? – points out that there is, in fact, cricket in Paradise Lost: “Chaos umpire sits,/And by decision more embroils the fray.” Paradise Lost, II, 907-8.)

  2. Sharon says:

    And for those who like Wendy Cope, I posted this last year.

  3. Too much fun! I cannot play. I. must. work!

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