Last night at the Alliterates meeting, we tried something new. We each brought a favorite poem to read and chat about. I choose two. I love “The Road Not Taken” by Robert Frost, but picking it is like saying the Beatles are your favorite band. It’s just too easy.
So, I also brought along a short poem by John Keats that no one at the table turned out to know. I used it as the epigraph for the adventure I contributed to Ghost Stories, a World of Darkness adventure book White Wolf published last fall, but I first found it in Dan Simmons’s Hyperion novels, which feature Keats as a character. Anyhow, here it is, in its creepy entirety:
This Living Hand
This living hand, now warm and capable
Of earnest grasping, would, if it were cold
And in the icy silence of the tomb,
So haunt thy days and chill thy dreaming nights
That thou wouldst wish thine own heart dry of blood
So in my veins red life might stream again,
And thou be conscience-calmed—see here it is—
I hold it towards you.