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Best Famous Keith Douglas Poems

Here is a collection of the all-time best famous Keith Douglas poems. This is a select list of the best famous Keith Douglas poetry. Reading, writing, and enjoying famous Keith Douglas poetry (as well as classical and contemporary poems) is a great past time. These top poems are the best examples of Keith Douglas poems.

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by Keith Douglas |

How To Kill

 Under the parabola of a ball,
a child turning into a man,
I looked into the air too long.
The ball fell in my hand, it sang in the closed fist: Open Open Behold a gift designed to kill.
Now in my dial of glass appears the soldier who is going to die.
He smiles, and moves about in ways his mother knows, habits of his.
The wires touch his face: I cry NOW.
Death, like a familiar, hears And look, has made a man of dust of a man of flesh.
This sorcery I do.
Being damned, I am amused to see the centre of love diffused and the wave of love travel into vacancy.
How easy it is to make a ghost.
The weightless mosquito touches her tiny shadow on the stone, and with how like, how infinite a lightness, man and shadow meet.
They fuse.
A shadow is a man when the mosquito death approaches


by Keith Douglas |

Vergissmeinnicht

 Three weeks gone and the combatants gone
returning over the nightmare ground
we found the place again, and found
the soldier sprawling in the sun.
The frowning barrel of his gun overshadowing.
As we came on that day, he hit my tank with one like the entry of a demon.
Look.
Here in the gunpit spoil the dishonoured picture of his girl who has put: Steffi.
Vergissmeinnicht.
in a copybook gothic script.
We see him almost with content, abased, and seeming to have paid and mocked at by his own equipment that's hard and good when he's decayed.
But she would weep to see today how on his skin the swart flies move; the dust upon the paper eye and the burst stomach like a cave.
For here the lover and killer are mingled who had one body and one heart.
And death who had the soldier singled has done the lover mortal hurt.


by Keith Douglas |

The Knife

 Can I explain this to you? Your eyes
are entrances the mouths of caves
I issue from wonderful interiors
upon a blessed sea and a fine day,
from inside these caves I look and dream.
Your hair explicable as a waterfall in some black liquid cooled by legend fell across my thought in a moment became a garment I am naked without lines drawn across through morning and evening.
And in your body each minute I died moving your thigh could disinter me from a grave in a distant city: your breasts deserted by cloth, clothed in twilight filled me with tears, sweet cups of flesh.
Yes, to touch two fingers made us worlds stars, waters, promontories, chaos swooning in elements without form or time come down through long seas among sea marvels embracing like survivors in our islands.
This I think happened to us together though now no shadow of it flickers in your hands your eyes look down on ordinary streets If I talk to you I might be a bird with a message, a dead man, a photograph.


by Keith Douglas |

Cairo Jag

 Shall I get drunk or cut myself a piece of cake,
a pasty Syrian with a few words of English
or the Turk who says she is a princess--she dances
apparently by levitation? Or Marcelle, Parisienne
always preoccupied with her dull dead lover:
she has all the photographs and his letters
tied in a bundle and stamped Decede in mauve ink.
All this takes place in a stink of jasmin.
But there are the streets dedicated to sleep stenches and the sour smells, the sour cries do not disturb their application to slumber all day, scattered on the pavement like rags afflicted with fatalism and hashish.
The women offering their children brown-paper breasts dry and twisted, elongated like the skull, Holbein's signature.
But his stained white town is something in accordance with mundane conventions- Marcelle drops her Gallic airs and tragedy suddenly shrieks in Arabic about the fare with the cabman, links herself so with the somnambulists and legless beggars: it is all one, all as you have heard.
But by a day's travelling you reach a new world the vegetation is of iron dead tanks, gun barrels split like celery the metal brambles have no flowers or berries and there are all sorts of manure, you can imagine the dead themselves, their boots, clothes and possessions clinging to the ground, a man with no head has a packet of chocolate and a souvenir of Tripoli.


by Keith Douglas |

Villanelle Of Spring Bells

 Bells in the town alight with spring
converse, with a concordance of new airs
make clear the fresh and ancient sound they sing.
People emerge from winter to hear them ring, children glitter with mischief and the blind man hears bells in the town alight with spring.
Even he on his eyes feels the caressing finger of Persephone, and her voice escaped from tears make clear the fresh and ancient sound they sing.
Bird feels the enchantment of his wing and in ten fine notes dispels twenty cares.
Bells in the town alight with spring warble the praise of Time, for he can bring this season: chimes the merry heaven bears make clear the fresh and ancient sound they sing.
All evil men intent on evil thing falter, for in their cold unready ears bells in the town alight with spring make clear the fresh and ancient sound they sing.