Poetry Quote: Auden 3

Good morning! Continuing my travels through W. H. Auden’s Selected Poems, I arrived at this lovely verse. Auden seems to be channeling Shakespeare in this stage, with formal syntax and even in setting looking backwards (nothing like the American inventions of, say, William Carlos Williams et al.) But my, how he is finding his own interesting and inventive verse forms, rhythm, and rhyme.

Certainly, fidelity

On the stroke of midnight pass

Like vibrations of a bell,

And fashionable madmen raise

Their pedantic boring cry:

Every farthing of the cost,

All the dreaded cards foretell,

Shall be paid, but from this night

Not a whisper, not a thought,

Not a kiss nor look be lost.

#36, “Lay your sleeping head, my love,” January 1937

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