Tuesday, December 18, 2018

Poetry Tuesday Revived

I let my intended tradition of poetry Tuesday languish as I took a break from the internet. Here is a quick post to revive it. I've often thought that the final stanza of "To Althea, from Prison" by Richard Lovelace might be the single most perfect stanza of English language poetry, in terms of pure craftmanship:

Stone walls do not a prison make,
Nor iron bars a cage:
Minds innocent and quiet take
That for an hermitage.
If I have freedom in my love,
And in my soul am free,
Angels alone, that soar above,
Enjoy such liberty.


  1. Quite an extraordinary piece. Hopefully one we'll never need live to the full

    1. Indeed! Although I've sometimes fancied a short spell in prison....a nice genteel prison, of course.

  2. The EXPRESS paper has s column of 'Forgotten Verse' sometimes, the latest international edition printed 'Aiken Drum', which is more of a folk song though

    1. Sorry, Séamus, I thought I'd published this comment already. I'm glad to hear about the Express's column! I've never heard of Aiken Drum.