"Ponderynge together yestardayes promise, and two-dayes doyng"
(Hall's Chronicle - 1548)


"Goronigl gwyr yr Ynys" (Lewis Glyn Cothi - 1450)

Wednesday, 19 December 2012

John Donne and John Milton at Midwinter


Lucy’s Day - Midwinter - a dark time
John Donne said in his Nocturnall rhyme-
ing flaskes with unmaskes to reveal
light in the darkness, a glimmer, but real,
a spark of hope at the Solstice, at the turn
of the year as the Sun pauses and fire burns
low at midnight : the yeares and the dayes

and we wait three turns of the earth for the rays
of light to return on a glimmering morn
so we say, this day, a child is born
bringing new life, new hope and the new year
of a new age as John Milton would have us bear
witness to the passing of the yellow-skirted fays
subdued in his Nativity but flighty in his gaze.


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Specific references are made in the above to John Donne’s ‘A Nocturnall upon S. Lucies Day’ and John Milton’s ‘Hymn on the Morning of Christ’s Nativity’.

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