Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Tuesday Poem on Wednesday

Ozymandias

I met a traveller from an antique land,
Who said: Two vast and trunkless legs of stone
Stand in the desert. Near them, on the sand,
Half sunk, a shattered visage lies, whose frown
And wrinkled lip and sneer of cold command,
Tell that its sculptor well those passions read,
Which yet survive stamped on these lifeless things,
The hand that mocked them, and the heart that fed:
And on the pedestal these words appear:
"My name is Ozymandias, King of Kings:
Look on my works, ye Mighty, and despair!"
Nothing beside remains. Round the decay
Of that colossal wreck, boundless and bare
The lone and level sands stretch far away.

- Percy Bysshe Shelley 1792 - 1822

I find this vision of ancient ruins keeps popping into my mind, with the growing number of demolitions around our city, and the controversy over the future of the Christchurch Cathedral. So I thought I would post it for my Tuesday Poem this week, though I am a day late due to some rather late nights out.

Meantime, at the main Tuesday Poem website, the Tuesday Poets have been building a collaborative poem for our second birthday. We have constructed it by contributing a line each in turn. It was great fun to do (and challenging, as well).

2 comments:

Penelope said...

I can never read this enough, Catherine. And of course, the play between the poem's longevity and the decay of the monument it describes adds a different level of complexity to it.

Thank you for posting it.

Leonie said...

That collaborative poem is magic!
Very evocative.