Kenneth Slessor

Kenneth Slessor

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Kenneth Adolphe Slessor OBE (27 March 1901 – 30 June 1971) was an Australian poet, journalist and official war correspondent in World War II. He was one of Australia's leading poets, notable particularly for the absorption of modernist influences into Australian poetry.
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Burying Friends

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NG friends is not a pomp, Not, indeed,
Roman: Lacking the monument, Heroic stone; Nor is it an obscuring parasol, The pad of customary gloves and cries And a black leather mourning-carriage Hung between death and the beholder's eyes
This...
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Thieves Kitchen

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OD roaring pistol-boys, brave lads of gold, Good roistering easy maids, blown cock-a-hoop On floods of tavern-steam,
I greet you
Drunk With wild Canary, drowned in wines of old, I'll swear your round, red faces dive and swim Like clouds ...
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Sensuality

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NG hunger and cold, feeling Food, feeling fire, feeling Pity and pain, tasting Time in a kiss, tasting Anger and tears, touching Eyelids with lips, touching Plague, touching flesh, knowing Blood in the mouth, knowing Laughter like flame, holding P...
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Nuremberg

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So quiet it was in that high, sun-steeped room,
So warm and still, that sometimes with the
Through the great windows, bright with bottle-panes,
There’d float a chime from clock-jacks out of sight, Clapping iron mallets on green copp...
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Thief Of The Moon

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Thief of the moon, thou robber of old delight,
Thy charms have stolen the star-gold, quenched the moon- Cold, cold are the birds that, bubbling out of night,
Cried once to my ears their unremembered tune- Dark are those orchards, their l...
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Snowdrops

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The Snowdrop Girl in fields of snowdrops walks,
Whiter than foam, deeper than waters flowing,
Flakes of wild milk gone blowing,
Snowing on cloudy stalks
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Last Trams

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I
AT street washed with violet Writes like a tablet Of living here; that pavement Is the metal embodiment Of living here; those terraces Filled with dumb presences Lobbed over mattresses, Lusts and repentances, Ardours and solaces, Passions a...
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Rubens Innocents

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IF all those tumbling babes of heaven, Plump cherubim with blown cheeks, Could vault in these warm skies, or leaven Our starry silent mountain-peaks— O painter of chub-faced, shining-thighed Fat Ganymedes of God—what noise Would churn between the ...
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Realities

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(To the etchings of Norman Lindsay) Now the statues lean over each to each, and sing, Gravely in warm plaster turning; the hedges are dark
The trees come suddenly to flower with moonlight, The water-gardens to glassy fire, and the night, the ...
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The Country Ride

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TH which has known so many passages Of April air, so many marriages Of strange and lovely atoms breeding light, Never may find again that lost delight
In the sharp sky, the frosty deepnesses, There are still birds to barb the silences, There ...
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Five Bells

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Time that is moved by little fidget
Is not my time, the flood that does not flow
Between the double and the single
Of a ship's hour, between a round of
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Polarities

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ES she is like sherry, like the sun through a vessel of glass, Like light through an oriel window in a room of yellow wood; Sometimes she is the colour of lions, of sand in the fire of noon, Sometimes as bruised with shadows as the afternoon
...
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Out Of Time

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1I saw Time flowing like a hundred
That fly behind the daylight, foxed with air;
Or piercing, like the quince-bright, bitter
Of sun gone thrusting under Harbour's hair
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South Country

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After the whey-faced
Of river-gums and scribbly-gums and bush,
After the rubbing and the hit of brush,
You come to the South Country As if the argument of trees were done,
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La Dame Du Palais De La Reine

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IE, in shocks of scarlet lace, Receives her usual embrace Beneath a hedge, behind a curtain, Or in the chambers of His Grace
Whether a kiss be worth the care Five minions wasted on her hair, Sophie herself is half uncertain, Paused in adorabl...
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The Ghost

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ES of old Spanish wine Pipe at this Inn to-night, Music and candleshine Fill the dim chambers


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