Gerard Manley Hopkins

I’ve always loved his sprung verse, its sounds and rhythms simultaneously reminds me of Old Anglo-Saxon poetry, Yoruba poetry, and rap.  As incredible as it may seem, the sad English monk may have foreshadowed some of hip-hop and spoken word’s poetic styles.  But don’t take my word for it, listen to Eminem of Pharoahe Monch after reading some Hopkins and tell me what you think.

Oh No!-Pharoahe Monch

From ‘Imrani, the Jewish Persian poet

My body exhausted, my soul injured, and my heart wounded
I am estranged from the Beloved and distant from myself
I am worn out as the wretched
I am distraught and mournful as the beggars
Having lost the essence of youth,
My soul has grown old for want of strength
Yet!  Despite all these pains which I have,
I will survive should You become my friend
O You whose doorway is the shelter for the dervish
To you everyone has attached the hopes of his heart
Since I have returned to Your Doorway,
Lift me in kindness and sooth my soul