‘Courage’ and Other Poetry by Michael Curtis The Society October 1, 2014 Beauty, Culture, Poetry 3 Comments Courage I saw a tiny spider spin a web Within my humble hut between two beams. He tried to throw a thread across, it ebbed Away. He did not have the will, it seemed. And then the tiny spider tried again, Again he failed to reach the other side. Five times the spider threw his thread, and then, On the sixth try he conquered the divide. With each attempt to win we gather strength. We brace the will with failure and defeat. We forge desire to win, we win at length. We stretch our arms to win at war; we meet Today a mighty army on the field: The tiny spider taught me, “Never yield.” Roibert a Briuis; Robert the Bruce, King of Scotland (1274 – 1329) Saint Theresa of the Child Jesus The little sparrow gives away her song Without the slightest notion of its cost. She chirps in sweetness all the morning long And dies a little with each note that’s lost. You cannot see her hidden in the leaves; She is so tiny folded in the shade, And yet her voice is larger than the tree And soars as though it never was afraid. Even the sweetest songs are sometimes sad, As though a thorn were pricking through the heart, But even in her death the bird is glad, Ready to meet her God when she departs. For, from the kindest moment of her birth She spent her heaven doing good on earth. Feast Day, October 3 Michael Curtis has 40 years of professional experience in architecture, sculpture, and painting. He has taught and lectured at universities, colleges, and museums including The Institute of Classical Architecture, The National Gallery of Art, et cetera. His paintings and sculptures are featured in over 300 private collections; his many public statues can be found in The Library of Congress, The Supreme Court, other public buildings and squares. Professional experiences include Archivist of State Art (Michigan); guest curator, The Detroit Institute of Art; founder of art galleries; widely published poet; founding director of The National Civic Art Society, et cetera. Featured Image: “Robert the Bruce reviewing His Troops Before the Battle of Bannockburn” by Edmund Blair Leighton (1853–1922). Views expressed by individual poets and writers on this website and by commenters do not represent the views of the entire Society. The comments section on regular posts is meant to be a place for civil and fruitful discussion. Pseudonyms are discouraged. The individual poet or writer featured in a post has the ability to remove any or all comments by emailing submissions@ classicalpoets.org with the details and under the subject title “Remove Comment.” Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to email this to a friend (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pinterest (Opens in new window) 3 Responses Reid McGrath October 1, 2014 Two consummate sonnets as per usual Mike. Both the spider and the sparrow are admirable and exemplary specimens: heedless of their own obscurity and their “littleness” or “tininess” in the face of a sublime world. The poems have a soft and plaintive loveliness about them. Reply NealD October 1, 2014 Agreed. Reading The Sparrow, happily, slowed me down with the soft quality of the word flow. This was no small feat. Reply NealD October 1, 2014 the poem Courage carries a compelling, haunting quality. I was reminded of the reading of Trumbull Stickney’s poem in the 2006 film The Good Shepherd. Thanks for sharing this work with everyone. Reply Leave a Reply to NealD Cancel ReplyYour email address will not be published.CommentName* Email* Website Notify me of follow-up comments by email. Notify me of new posts by email. This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.