Poems by Harry Haines

A series of Poems by Harry haines


Such elegance over a muddy creek,A Raleigh cloak for common royality,

A bridge as sweetly curved as any woman’s brow, Designed, you think,for a lover’s meet.
There has not been a utility more fair
To walk from north to south in Gosport town,
And view our harbour of great renoun.


Pipe al hands, my bosun,

Get the sleeping watch topside

There’s a blow coming down from Iceland

Angrier than a jilted bride.

The white caps start their grinning,

The sky’s as weird as sin.

Batten down the hatches

There’s a north easter rushing in.

The spray’s as sharp as whipping

The skin from off your back,

The bowsprit starts a dipping

As we draw on the starboard tack.

Sailor reef the mainsail,

Keep the head just off the wind,

Then we’ll jibe and run before it

And pray the devil’s not behind.

It’s been like this since Jonah

Got swallowed by the whale

And so it will be always If you’re caught out in a gale.

Harry Haines Entry in a late summer diary.

The warm dry weather persists,                                     The trees look languid with too much summer love

And the streams stroll slowly                                   Singing their troubadour sad songs.                             Here and there a few leaves fall,                              Omens of the dying that’s to come.                        Escapist birds prepare for ritual journeyings               And anxious realists sniff prematurely the Winter’s spoor.
Today, tomorrow, perhaps another month
This summer will hold its heaven high.
I neither prepare nor sniff its ending near;                Perhaps afraid, but who cares what you say.
I now know how the seasons run,                              Have caught on to the simple two and two

Of living where night must follow day                          And would be less human if I weren’t afraid.                But today the sky’s unclouded and the last hay          As sweet to lie in as anything in May.

Harry Haines

For more of Harry Haines Poems

Harry Haines
Harry Haines-Waiting to Decend

-WAITING TO DESCEND Collected poems Harry Haines 1953-06 £11 – Obtainable by phone 023 92 583608 E-Mail h.haines1@ntlworld.com or from  Lee- on -Solent Bookshop/ Waterstones bookshop Fareham Precinct