A 'response piece' :>)

The blackbird's ditty

Recently, one of our poetry pals introduced us to 'The Poplar Field' by William Cowper (https://www.poemhunter.com/poem/the-poplar-field/).

In this poem, Cowper feels sad on returning to his favourite field and seeing that a row of poplars has been felled. A blackbird who used to sing in the poplars has moved to a new haunt in the hazels, and Cowper now sits on the stump of a tree that once provided some cool shade. The poem ends with his musings on death and the perishing pleasures of mankind :>(

Members of Coo & Co read a bit about Cowper, discovering that, for quite a lot of his life, he was very unhappy. Our response piece is something of a comfort tune, and it is in triple metre (co-co-COO)...

Thus poor Cowper laments, then rolls off the said seat
and curls up on the field, which was once used for wheat,
in an oval of shade for some shade does remain
by each tree stump, yet musings arising from pain

steal the shade and all comforts away and away
and felled poplars bring thinking of death and decay
'til, exhausted, the poet slides into a dream
and the blackbird calls, 'Cowper, m'duck?', from upstream.

'Aye, 'tis dam' shame these very fine trees were axed down.
I stood watchin'. Well, you can imagine the frown
that I wore. As for Missus, she wept, just like you.
But we 'ad to move on. There was so much to do!

'Our dear 'ome lay in clumps on the grass, eggs all spilled.
So we 'ad to find other trees where we could build.
Now we live in the 'azels. They're just 'round the bend.
And you're welcome to visit us, Cowper, old friend.

'It is not your grand colonnade. Still, 'tis quite good.
You can muse in the shade of the bendy brown wood.
And the Ouse runs as smoothly as ever you viewed.
And we've just started raisin' our next little brood.'

Poetry by Coo & Co The PoetBay support member heart!
Read 609 times
Written on 2019-07-22 at 20:42

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Coo & Co The PoetBay support member heart!
Hoo, hoo, hoo! :>o

Coo laughs, entirely unconcerned :>)

jim The PoetBay support member heart!
I am afraid that you are like Cowper's fallen colonnade, you represent the art of poetry as we once knew it. It is being cut down, rhyme and meter disappearing, little by little. Once lost it may never be found again.

I am the woodcutter, clear-cutting tradition. I don't feel good about it.

Here's to you, standing tall and firm against the onslaught of modernity. And here's to optimism, another fading commodity, which you champion seemingly without effort.

I teach the poem, The Poplar Field, to my high school students. That is a heartfelt take on the ecological loss. Yours definitely reads like a response and even transcends Cowper's work. Like Sameen, I too enjoyed the deft hand at prosody.

I have to say the prosody of this poem is amazing. Especially the first two stanzas. I was dancing along to the meter at one point. I love it!

Lawrence Beck The PoetBay support member heart!
Hope for the future if the good people along the Ouse aren't like Nebraskans. People here are quite keen on cutting down trees. I'm not sure why.