William Empson

William Empson Poems

It is this deep blankness is the real thing strange.
The more things happen to you the more you can't
Tell or remember even what they were.
...

Slowly the poison the whole blood stream fills.
It is not the effort nor the failure tires.
The waste remains, the waste remains and kills.
It is not your system or clear sight that mills
...

It is the pain, it is the pain endures.
Your chemic beauty burned my muscles through.
Poise of my hands reminded me of yours.
...

Not but they die, the teasers and the dreams,
Not but they die,
and tell the careful flood
To give them what they clamour for and why.
...

This last pain for the damned the Fathers found:
"They knew the bliss with which they were not crowned."
Such, but on earth, let me foretell,
Is all, of heaven or of hell.
...

Hours before dawn we were woken by the quake.
My house was on a cliff. The thing could take
Bookloads off shelves, break bottles in a row.
Then the long pause and then the bigger shake.
...

There is a supreme God in the ethnological section;
A hollow toad shape, faced with a blank shield.
He needs his belly to include the Pantheon,
Which is inserted through a hole behind.
...

Waiting for the end, boys, waiting for the end.
What is there to be or do?
What’s become of me or you?
Are we kind or are we true?
...

It is the pain, it is the pain endures.
Your chemic beauty burned my muscles through.
Poise of my hands reminded me of yours.
...

The Best Poem Of William Empson

Let It Go

It is this deep blankness is the real thing strange.
The more things happen to you the more you can't
Tell or remember even what they were.

The contradictions cover such a range.
The talk would talk and go so far aslant.
You don't want madhouse and the whole thing there.

William Empson Comments

Sandra JKM Feneley 12 April 2021

He is so brilliant and his works rival Shakespeare...it seemed the best thing to be up and go.

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