Representative Poetry Online
  Poet Index   Poem Index   Random   Search  
  Introduction   Timeline   Calendar   Glossary   Criticism   Bibliography  
  RPO   Canadian Poetry   UTEL  
by Name
by Date
by Title
by First Line
by Last Line
Poet
Poem
Short poem
Keyword
Concordance

e. e. cummings (1894-1962)

O sweet spontaneous


              1O sweet spontaneous
              2earth how often have
              3the
              4doting

              5            fingers of
              6prurient philosophers pinched
              7and
              8poked

              9thee
            10, has the naughty thumb
            11of science prodded
            12thy

            13      beauty       .   how
            14often have religions taken
            15thee upon their scraggy knees
            16squeezing and

            17buffeting thee that thou mightest conceive
            18gods
            19        (but
            20true

            21to the incomparable
            22couch of death thy
            23rhythmic
            24lover

            25          thou answerest



            26them only with

            27                          spring)

Notes

6] prurient: lascivious, sexually aroused.
philosophers: philosophies (1920 Dial)

15] knees / squeezing: / knees squeezing (1920 Dial).

25] e.e.c. manually alters three blank lines after this line into two blank lines.


Online text copyright © 2003, Ian Lancashire for the Department of English, University of Toronto.
Published by the Web Development Group, Information Technology Services, University of Toronto Libraries.

Original text: "Tulips," "LA GUERRE," II, Tulips and Chimneys (New York: Thomas Seltzer, 1923): 74-75. Firmage A3a, Berg Collection, New York Public Library.
First publication date: May 1920
Publication date note: Dial 68.5 (May 1920): 578.
RPO poem editor: Ian Lancashire
RP edition: RPO 2000.
Recent editing: 2:2001/12/12

Form: free
Rhyme: unrhyming
Form note: variable-length lines and stanzas


Other poems by e. e. cummings