An Accident of Birth
1840: Claude Monet, whiskered creator of canvases of water-lilies so vast
you have to stand across the room to see what they are
– “all paint, ” as my artist friend remarked,
revelling in the sensuousness of surfaces –
and of countless prints, diaries,
tea-towels and table-mats; father of Impressionism.
1889: Jawaharlal Nehru, pandit (learned master) :
father of modern India. In his homeland his birthday
is Children’s Day, because he loved children – though even he
couldn’t eat a whole one.
1900: Aaron Copland, American composer (Appalachian Spring,
el Salón México, Rodeo, etc., etc.) .
1919 (but some say 1922) : Veronica Lake, iconic movie star of the 1940s.
1948: Prince Charles Windsor, king-in-waiting (a long time) , famous for talking
(A) to plants (since he admitted it in an interview)
and (B) indiscreetly on the telephone to his mistress
(since the security services leaked the call) .
When I was a boy they played the National Anthem on my birthday,
only it was for him, not for me.
1954: Condoleezza Rice (two ‘E’s and two ‘Zee’s) , famous for being
black, and a woman, and arguably one of the most powerful people in the world.
and 1967: Letitia Dean, one-time soap-opera actress, landlady of a fictional pub
in a fictional East End, now a “personality”.
Celebrity makes strange bedfellows.
Paul Hansford's Other Poems
Read this poem in other languages
This poem has not been translated into any other language yet.
Comments about this poem (An Accident of Birth by Paul Hansford )
- The Power Of Prayer, Tom Zart
- Mini Pool Tournament, RoseAnn V. Shawiak
- Tonight And Every Night, Michael McParland
- Ongoing Mental De-Evolution, michael walkerjohn
- Crossroads Of Destiny, RoseAnn V. Shawiak
- Spaces Of Intellect, RoseAnn V. Shawiak
- I Know Why Old People Are Sometimes Very.., Shalom Freedman
- Speaking Loudly, RoseAnn V. Shawiak
- Not Sure, Michael McParland
- Into The Air, Robert Eckstein
Poem of the Day
- Annabel Lee, Edgar Allan Poe
- The Road Not Taken, Robert Frost
- Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening, Robert Frost
- Dreams, Langston Hughes
- Do Not Go Gentle Into That Good Night, Dylan Thomas
- Phenomenal Woman, Maya Angelou
- Still I Rise, Maya Angelou
- The Raven, Edgar Allan Poe
- If, Rudyard Kipling
- If You Forget Me, Pablo Neruda
(March 26, 1874 – January 29, 1963)
Edgar Allan Poe
(19 January 1809 - 7 October 1849)
(1 February 1902 – 22 May 1967)
(12 July 1904 – 23 September 1973)
(10 December 1830 – 15 May 1886)
(1 February 1927)
(31 October 1795 – 23 February 1821)
(4 April 1928 - 28 May 2014)
(28 November 1757 – 12 August 1827)
(31 May 1819 - 26 March 1892)