Saturday, August 4, 2012

Classic Poetry - "Well I Remember" by Walter Savage Landor

Walter Savage Landor (1775–1864)

As poets and writers, artists and creators, we must seek a bit of the eternal through our work. That, at least, is the theme Walter Savage Landor addresses in this brief yet profound poem.

WELL I remember how you smiled
To see me write your name upon
The soft sea-sand—‘O! what a child!
You think you’re writing upon stone!’
I have since written what no tide
Shall ever wash away, what men
Unborn shall read o’er ocean wide
And find Ianthe’s name again.



  1. So modern.
    I was surprised to see the dates of his lifetime.

  2. What a sweet poem...and as he remembered, we will remember.

  3. And so we do! It seems such a boast, but justified, as I have been reading this poem and Ianthe's name since I was a child. Shakespeare said it too, even more floridly, and was right also (though he didn't name the beloved). And James Elroy Flecker addressed one of his poems to an unknown poet far in the future, and when I read it I know I am one to whom he is speaking.

    What gave them such confidence? Or was it simply a brave hope? We know Shakespeare as a master now, but in his day it was less obvious.

    I look again at this little poem of Landor's and see how beautifully crafted it is, so economical and apparently simple, rhyme and metre perfect, the wording natural according to the conventions of his time. He must have done a lot of work on it. (Now, there's a clue!)

  4. What a romantic! I love the tight lines and the thoughts he shared~
    Thank you Kim, for sharing him with us :D


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