A Patchwork poem.- originally posted in 2008
The cento (or collage poem) is a poetic form made up of lines from poems by other poets.
Lines (with minor tweaks) by the following: John Gay, John Dryden, James & Horatio Smith, Crosbie Garstin, Robert Graves, Edwin Muir, Samuel Taylor Coleridge, William Wordsworth, Siegfried Sassoon, Bernard Spencer, Oliver Goldsmith, David H. Lawrence, Siegfried Sassoon, Edmund Blunden, Dylan Thomas.
At first a glowing red enwrapped the skies,
at length the crackling noise and dreadful blaze
– starred, striped and spotted, yellow, red and blue –
pushed out streaming tentacles, took hold:
the most odd, indescribable thing of all.
We listened to our breathing and were afraid.
Burn madly, Fire! o’er earth in ravage run.
Shop after shop, with symbols, blazoned names.
Scared people hurried, storming the doors in crowds
screaming like frightened animals, clashing metal
and quite forgot their vices in their woe:
the rain won’t come, the rain refuses to come!
The officials seemed to waken with a shout
and promptly took the necessary action
under the night forever falling.
© Luigi Pagano