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Poems by Cornelia Blanche Furbish
[Mother of David Baker Furbish]


The picture above was painted by Cornelia B. Furbish
as a possible illustration for a book of poems
she was hoping to have published.

 

TO OWN AN ISLAND

To own an island is to lose one's heart
To land and sea;

It is to be
Forever drawn by wind and tide,
A part of wildness,
Yet no less
Subscribed by order and a certain law.

An island knows
The wind that blows in from the sea,
it takes the storms that overawe
A island-bound man;
 
But, Oh, it can Be a wondrous thing to own an island and to be
Attuned to both - to land and sea.



Printed in the Christian Science Monitor - August 21, 1972

 

SUNSET AT RACE POINT

The wind is rising, whipping the bay in little gusts,
Tipping the waves with edge of lace;

I walk along the bar,
the pounding surf but inches from my feet.

My footprint stays upon the hard-packed sand
until the turning tide
Shall sweep it free.

The keening gulls are silent
As the westering sun turns water into molten gold
on the sea's face.

A glory spreads across the western sky;
the flame-touched sun
Slowly sinks beneath the wave,
and sky and sea and land grow dark.

In the quiet dusk I hear
Only the breaking waves and my own breathing.


Printed in the Provincetown Advocate - September 21, 1972

     
     

REQUIEM FOR AN OLYMPIAD

Some of the brightness is gone from the games,
Tarnish corrodes the glowing display

Of medals--- in gold, and silver, and bronze---
For blood had been spilt
And there is no way
To wipe the stain.

These are the slain---
Young men and brave who vied with each other

In yesterday's sport---
In rivalry, yes, but as
Sportsmen, as brother to brother.
 
Then, lower the flags and, silently pray.
Let the streets fall to quiet,
Let the torchlight go out,
Let the music be muffled, the cadence slow;

The madness of men has brought this about:
We cannot walk singly, nor yet stand apart,

Each one is involved, each must be aware,
And as each one prays in his innermost heart,
For wisdom, for love---
So each one must care.


Printed in the Boston Globe - September 11, 1972

This poem was written in tribute to the Olympic athletes at the Olympic Games in Munich, Germany after the massacre in 1972.
 

 

A VALENTINE

Love is not only for the young -- for to be in love
Is to be ageless:

Within its golden heart
A song, forever new, tender and strong,
Echoes in beauty, filling each part with music,
And there is silence, too,
Gentle and warm, soothing the daily hurts,
The loneliness, the roughness, into peace.

Love is a miracle -- each time it is felt,
Accepted, it makes a garden of the barren waste
Our lives might be, would be,
Without its special touch.


Printed in Hearts on Fire:
A Treasury of Poems on Love, Volume III
Copyright 1986 by the AMERICAN POETRY ASSOCIATION

 

     
     

DEFINITION

What is love?
Can one define all its meaning in a word?
 
Can one set, in metered line,
What is seen and felt and heard?

What is sensed within the soul?
 
Deeper than feeling, closer than heart,
Stronger than faith, greatest of all,
Of life and of living, the loveliest part!



Printed in Hearts on Fire:
A Treasury of Poems on Love, Volume III
Copyright 1986 by the AMERICAN POETRY ASSOCIATION

 

 

TOUCH ME TENDERLY

Love is both commitment and fulfillment:

We touch with tenderness --
And find, within our touching, a whole new way of life.

If we can but love without duress,
Freely, as children love,
Openly, aware of each other's needs,
Yet gently, for it should be a gentle thing
That touches another's life so deeply.

So touch me tenderly, with love,
For I am vulnerable indeed
Since I have given myself to you,
Freely, spurred on by an inner need.
 
I would not seek to shackle you
With even lightest silken strings,
For love that is fettered surely dies,
Love must have freedom to spread its wings.


Printed in Hearts on Fire:
A Treasury of Poems on Love, Volume III
Copyright 1986 by the AMERICAN POETRY ASSOCIATION

 

     
     

SUMMER DAWN

The sun rises beyond the greening hills
Spreading its light across the rugged land;

The singing birds beyond my windowsill
Call me to waken with imperious command.

The dawn gives promise of the heat to come
Although the dew still hangs on every blade
Of grass, and in the shaded spots the air
Is chill upon the skin.

The sweet cascade
Of music stirs me up.

I lean across the sill
To watch a doe --
In silent leap she clears the further wall
Of rough pilled rocks, and then is gone
As silently as some bright leaf might fall;

Beyond the trees the lake is mirror-still
Reflecting the dawn -- and hill.


Printed in the Christian Science Monitor - July 26, 1972
 

 

TELL FREEDOM

Tell freedom -- how the hot blood ran
In the summer of our discontent.

The young defy the mores of our world,
In swift bright anger:

Thus it has been before.

Each generation flung
Into the breech, dissatisfied, and reaching out
With eager, impatient hands to change their world
From what their forebears was.

The old men shake their heads--
In unremembering -- their fingers curled
Around the staffs of age unwilling to recall a time
When they were rebel, too, and fought for change.

Remember then, this is not mere presumption,
Nor is rebellion strange--
Freedom was born from rebel stock,
Created from a need
To see all men equal and free in deed.



Printed in the Boston Globe - July 8, 1972
 

     



     
     

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