We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
The little coat embroidered with birds Is irretrievably ruined. We bought it in the spring. She stood upon a chair And raised her arms like branches. I leaned my head against her breast Listening to that heavy bird Thudding at the center of our happiness.
Everything is dragged away. The clothes that were so gay Lie in attics, like the dolls With which wild children used to play. The bed where the loved one lies Is a river bed on which Enchanting haunting life Is carried where the current may - Tangled among blocks of ice. Nests and singing branches Were the springs of yesterday.
Writing a poem on the death of a child seems unsporting, since almost any effort is guaranteed to affect.
Try writing an affecting poem about a potato. Now that's a challenge. How's this insta-doggerel:
Dying slices oozing life
Upon an oft-knifed block,
A spud no longer essays roots
or ticks its bioclock.
The God who deigned to give it life,
The God of deep-plowed soil,
Now prepares its brief afterlife—
A bath of boiling oil.
"The little coat" refers to that of Spender's ex wife Marie (who later adopted the name Inez). This (the first) Mrs. Spender departed their union without any warning, and the poet came home to discover this loss, realizing what had happened because much of her clothing was missing.
I completely misunderstood the context of the poem.
(Sometimes a poet's allusion is too obscure.)
Please withdraw my content.
BTW, in perusing the web, I came across this in Wikipedia:
"For many years, [Roy] Campbell worked at the BBC and remained a fixture. During a poetry recitation by the outspoken Stalinist Stephen Spender, Campbell stormed the stage and punched him. However, Spender refused to press charges, saying, "He is a great poet… We must try to understand." Spender later broke with the Communist Party of Great Britain and presented Campbell with the 1952 Foyle Prize for his verse translations of St. John of the Cross."
What is it about artists and communism? They seem indifferent to their own existence.