Dream Song 104: Welcome, grinned Henry, welcome, fifty-one!

John Berryman

 Next Poem          

Welcome, grinned Henry, welcome, fifty-one!
I never cared for fifty, when nothing got done.
The hospitals were fun
in certain ways, and an honour or so,
but on the whole fifty was a mess as though
heavy clubs from below

and from—God save the bloody mark—above
were loosed upon his skull & soles. O love,
what was you loafing of
that fifty put you off, out & away,
leaving the pounding, horrid sleep by day,
nights naught but fits. I pray

the opening decade contravene its promise
to be as bad as all the others. Is
there something Henry miss
in the jungle of the gods whom Henry's prayer to?
Empty temples—a decade of dark-blue
sins, son, worse than you.

Next Poem 

 Back to John Berryman
Get a free collection of Classic Poetry ↓

Receive the ebook in seconds 50 poems from 50 different authors

To be able to leave a comment here you must be registered. Log in or Sign up.

  • Madamemandala

    Just finished revisiting "Dream Song 104: Welcome, grinned Henry, welcome, fifty-one!" for a school assignment. Read it when I was younger, didn't realize how heavy it is till now 😅 Still tricky to fully grasp but really deep and thought-provoking! 💭📚