Dancing with Joy: 99 Poems By Roger Housden

In his collection Risking Everything, Housden addressed love s many aspects. Now, in Dancing with Joy, he assembles 99 poems from 69 poets that celebrate the many colors of joy. Anything can be a catalyst for joy, these poems reveal.
For Wislawa Szymborska, the catalyst is a dream; for Robert Bly, being in the company of his ten-year-old son; for Gerald Stern, it is a grapefruit at breakfast; for Billy Collins, a cigarette. Dancing with Joy includes English and Italian classical and romantic works; early Chinese and Persian verse; and poets from Chile, France, Sweden, Poland, Russia, Turkey, and India, plus a range of contemporary American and English poets.
Whether inspiration is what you need, or an affirmation of what is already joyful in life, Dancing with Joy is a welcome treat for Housden s numerous fans, as well as anyone looking for sheer happiness, marvelously expressed. Dancing with Joy: 99 Poems

Roger Housden Ü 0 Free read

Note to self: read more happy poetry :,) 030734195X Excellent compilation of poems. I really enjoyed this book. 030734195X I thought I would like it more than I eventually did. My expectations were too high. Did not see the joy part of the poems. Strongly believe that the same authors have better poems to include in such book. 030734195X A little heavy on the translations of poets like Hafiz by translators like Daniel Ladinsky who don't actually translate, but instead write their own poem based on or inspired by the original and pass it off as a translation. Most of these translators are not even conversant with the language of the original. The inclusion of this kind of material as well as a healthy overdose of Mary Oliver makes the collection sappy at times, but it's still a mood elevater. More importantly, it's a good survey to get the reader acquainted with a range of poets, and the general quality of the poetry is quite high. 030734195X Nice premise, but this book disappoints. I hoped to be refreshed from the customarily dour stances taken by many poets, but a lot of the poems in this collection are lackluster. 030734195X

I think it is fitting and necessary and not at all confusing to read these after a book that was against joy; a way to balance and center myself. Housden says, we are ashamed to be happy. It is more intellectual and stimulating to be melancholy, and we should reclaim happiness and joy, whereas Professor Wilson in Against Happiness railed against the supremacy of the happy types. It can’t be both, can it? Wendell Berry writes a poem, asking, “why all the embarrassment/about being happy?” Housden compiles these poems “to celebrate the many colors and freedoms of joy.” Jack Gilbert says, “we must risk delight, “ as a moral duty, or a human imperative, which I believe. All of the poems “suggest that there are, after all, many kinds of joy, to which neither age, nor era, nor continent, can lay any exclusive claim.” That is true for me about life in general, and like the book cover, I try to twirl as much as possible, as gracefully and joyfully as possible.

A Brief for the Defense by Jack Gilbert
Sorrow everywhere. Slaughter everywhere. If babies
are not starving someplace, they are starving
somewhere else. With flies in their nostrils.
But we enjoy our lives because that's what God wants.
Otherwise the mornings before summer dawn would not
be made so fine. The Bengal tiger would not
be fashioned so miraculously well. The poor women
at the fountain are laughing together between
the suffering they have known and the awfulness
in their future, smiling and laughing while somebody
in the village is very sick. There is laughter
every day in the terrible streets of Calcutta,
and the women laugh in the cages of Bombay.
If we deny our happiness, resist our satisfaction,
we lessen the importance of their deprivation.
We must risk delight. We can do without pleasure,
but not delight. Not enjoyment. We must have
the stubbornness to accept our gladness in the ruthless
furnace of this world. To make injustice the only
measure of our attention is to praise the Devil.
If the locomotive of the Lord runs us down,
we should give thanks that the end had magnitude.
We must admit there will be music despite everything.
We stand at the prow again of a small ship
anchored late at night in the tiny port
looking over to the sleeping island: the waterfront
is three shuttered cafés and one naked light burning.
To hear the faint sound of oars in the silence as a rowboat
comes slowly out and then goes back is truly worth
all the years of sorrow that are to come.

Mindful by Mary Oliver
Every day
I see or hear
that more or less
kills me
with delight,
that leaves me
like a needle
in the haystack
of light.
It was what I was born for -
to look, to listen,
to lose myself
inside this soft world -
to instruct myself
over and over
in joy,
and acclamation.
Nor am I talking
about the exceptional,
the fearful, the dreadful,
the very extravagant -
but of the ordinary,
the common, the very drab,
the daily presentations.
Oh, good scholar,
I say to myself,
how can you help
but grow wise
with such teachings
as these -
the untrimmable light
of the world,
the ocean's shine,
the prayers that are made
out of grass?

Why I Am Happy -- William Stafford

Now has come, an easy time. I let it
roll. There is a lake somewhere
so blue and far nobody owns it.
A wind comes by and a willow listens
I hear all this, every summer. I laugh
and cry for every turn of the world,
its terribly cold, innocent spin.
That lake stays blue and free; it goes
on and on.
And I know where it is.

Mind Wanting More by Holly Hughes

Only a beige slat of sun
above the horizon, like a shade pulled
not quite down. Otherwise,
clouds. Sea rippled here and
there. Birds reluctant to fly.
The mind wants a shaft of sun to
stir the grey porridge of clouds,
an osprey to stitch sea to sky
with its barred wings, some dramatic
music: a symphony, perhaps
a Chinese gong.

But the mind always
wants more than it has --
one more bright day of sun,
one more clear night in bed
with the moon; one more hour
to get the words right; one
more chance for the heart in hiding
to emerge from its thicket
in dried grasses -- as if this quiet day
with its tentative light weren't enough,
as if joy weren't strewn all around.

Variation on a Theme by Rilke by Denise Levertov

A certain day became a presence to me;
there it was, confronting me--a sky, air, light:
a being. And before it started to descend
from the height of noon, it leaned over
and struck my shoulder as if with
the flat of a sword, granting me
honor and a task. The day's blow
rang out, metallic--or it was I, a bell awakened,
and what I heard was my whole self
saying and singing what it knew: I can.

Even If I Don’t See it Again by Marie Howe

Even if I don’t see it again.–nor ever feel it
I know it is–and that if once it hailed me
it ever does–

and so it is myself I want to turn in that direction
not as towards a place, but it was a tilting
within myself,

as one turns a mirror to flash the light to where
it isn’t.–I was blinded like that–and swam
in what shone at me

only able to endure it by being no one and so
specifically myself I thought I’d die
from being loved like that.

Matins (excerpt) by Denise Levertov

The authentic! I said
rising from the toilet seat.
The radiator in rhythmic knockings
spoke of the rising steam.
The authentic, I said
breaking the handle of my hairbrush as I
brushed my hair in
rhythmic strokes: That’s it,
that’s joy, it’s always
a recognition, the known
appearing fully itself, and
more itself than one knew.
030734195X I like these themed anthologies. I read poems and poets that I might not choose on my own. 030734195X This is a lovely book. With terrorism, natural disasters, and all the sorrows that can enter one's life, it helps to read poetry that is beautiful and uplifting. Housden has compiled a collection of poems that celebrate the many colors of joy. He includes classic poems by ancient masters, among them W.B. Yeats and E.E. Cummings, translations of poets such as Rumi and Neruda, and favorites by modern poems such as William Stafford, Mary Oliver, and Sharon Olds. Each poem is a bright light and a balm for the hurts of the world. Housden has edited several other compilations, including Seven Sins for a Life Worth Living and 10 Poems to Change Your Life. 030734195X If you love poetry, you'll love this compilation by Roger Housden. In it you'll meet the many faces of Joy and be delightfully surprised by how Joy is interpreted by the many poets and writers whom he's curated for this book.

It's a book to keep by your bed when you want to read something that will soothe your soul, calm a troubled heart or just want to fade gently into dreamland.

I think of all the writing genres, poetry is the most personal. It's like choosing a perfume - it's not something anyone else can pick out for you. Poetry is similar - I have my favorite poets and spend much of my time with Rumi, Hafiz and many others - all who are represented in this book.

This is a lovely compilation filled with known and unknown poets - all of them offering a lyrical dance of words and beauty that is timeless. 030734195X A fun collection that is accessible. Spans from BC to current day. These poems are great to feel the life bubbling from the world. 030734195X