William Daryl Hine

William Daryl Hine Poems


Echo that loved hid within a wood
Would to herself rehearse her weary woe:
O, she cried, and all the rest unsaid
Identical came back in sorry echo.

Smoothed by sleep and ruffled by your dreams
The surface of the little lake
Fed by unconscious tributary streams,
Unbroken by the breezes nightmares make,

The sight of beauty simply makes us sick:
There are too many hours in the day,
Too many wicked faces built like flowers
And far too many bargains for a song.

Orient yourself in time
Toward the prepossessing dawn.
Disenchanted by the past,

What fellow traveller returned from the U.S.S.R.,
Burdened with souvenirs in the form of second thoughts, said
That, rephrasing the Slavic platitude as a reactionary epigram? Thence
One must count oneself privileged to have escaped empty-handed,

This also is a place that love is known in,
This hollow land beneath a lifeless sea
Opposite to the place that he was born in,
How far it is impossible to say.

The telephone keeps talking to itself:
Garbage in the streets, a butterfly,
A rubber raft abandoned, floating out to sea,
And late last night nearby, a conflagration—

Mountains rise above us like ideas
Vague in their superior extent,
Part of the range of disillusionment
Whose arresting outline disappears

It is half past ten in Stonington.
The trees droop apprehensive of the heat
And the sky has turned that pale suspicious colour
That means that it cannot support more light.

William Daryl Hine Biography

William Daryl Hine (February 24, 1936 – August 20, 2012) was a Canadian poet and translator. Hine was born in Burnaby in 1936 and grew up in New Westminster, British Columbia. He was the adopted son of Robert Fraser and Elsie James Hine. He attended McGill University in Montreal 1954-58. His first chapbook, The Carnal and the Crane, was published as part of Louis Dudek's McGill Poetry Series in 1957. Hine then went to Europe on a Canada Council scholarship, where he lived for the next three years. He moved to New York in 1962 and to Chicago in 1963, taking a PhD in Comparative Literature at the University of Chicago in 1967. He taught there and at Northwestern University and at University of Illinois (Chicago Campus) during the following decades while he served as editor of Poetry magazine. He was awarded a MacArthur Fellowship in 1986. He was an editor of Poetry magazine, from 1968 to 1978. The correspondence is held at Indiana University. Hine's work appeared in the New York Review of Books, Harper's, The New Yorker, The Tamarack Review, The Paris Review. The poet first came out as gay in his 1975 work In & Out, which was initially available only in a privately printed version in limited circulation. The work did not gain general publication until 1989. Following the death of his partner of more than 30 years, the philosopher Samuel Todes, Hine lived in semi-retirement in Evanston, Illinois. Hine died of complications of a blood disorder on August 20, 2012 at the age of 76. A final collection of his poetry, A Reliquary and Other Poems, is being prepared for publication.)

The Best Poem Of William Daryl Hine


Echo that loved hid within a wood
Would to herself rehearse her weary woe:
O, she cried, and all the rest unsaid
Identical came back in sorry echo.

Echo for the fix that she was in
Invisible, distraught by mocking passion,
Passionate, ignored, as good as dumb,
Employed that O unchanged in repetition.

Shun love if you suspect that he shuns you,
Use with him no reproaches whatsoever.
Ever you knew, supposing him to know
No melody from which you might recover-

Cover your ears, dear Echo, do not hear.
Here is no supplication but your own,
Only your sighs return upon the air
Ere their music from the mouth be gone.

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