Poetry in Motion



Elizabeth Bishop

Love's the boy stood on the burning deck
trying to recite "The boy stood on
the burning deck." Love's the son
  stood stammering elocution
  while the poor ship in flames went down.

Love's the obstinate boy, the ship,
even the swimming sailors, who
would like a schoolroom platform, too,
  or an excuse to stay
  on deck. And love's the burning boy.

"Casabianca" from The Complete Poems: 1927-1979 by Elizabeth Bishop. Copyright © 1965 by Elizabeth Bishop. Copyright © 1979, 1983 by Alice Helen Methfessel. Reprinted with the permission of Farrar, Straus and Giroux, Inc.