Against Travel

By Charles Tomlinson b. 1927 Charles Tomlinson
These days are best when one goes nowhere,
The house a reservoir of quiet change,
The creak of furniture, the window panes
Brushed by the half-rhymes of activities
That do not quite declare what thing it was
Gave rise to them outside. The colours, even,
Accord with the tenor of the day—yes, ‘grey’
You will hear reported of the weather,
But what a grey, in which the tinges hover,
About to catch, although they still hold back
The blaze that's in them should the sun appear,
And yet it does not. Then the window pane
With a tremor of glass acknowledges
The distant boom of a departing plane.

Charles Tomlinson, “Against Travel” from Selected Poems 1955-1997. Copyright © 1997 by Charles Tomlinson. Reprinted with the permission of New Directions Publishing Corporation.

Source: Selected Poems: 1955-1997 (1997)

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Poet Charles Tomlinson b. 1927

POET’S REGION England

Subjects Home Life, Activities, Travels & Journeys

Poetic Terms Sonnet

Biography

Poet, artist, and translator Charles Tomlinson was born in Stoke-on-Trent, Staffordshire in 1927. Fluent in German, French, and Italian, he read English at Queen’s College Cambridge, studying with poet Donald Davie who was an early influence and later became a close friend. Tomlinson taught elementary school before joining the University of Bristol, where he taught for 36 years. His collections of poetry include Relations and . . .

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SUBJECT Home Life, Activities, Travels & Journeys

POET’S REGION England

Poetic Terms Sonnet

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Originally appeared in Poetry magazine.

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