Do you know that for centuries, wine and poetry have been in a love affair? Yes, just like couples, the one often fuels the other. Wine is likely what fueled some poets to write eloquently about wine. Their poems reveal their affection towards wine and how it invigorates their soul. In recognition of National Poetry Month, here are some wine poems for your delight.
1. To the Tune of Intoxicated under the shadow of flowers by Li Qingzhao. Here’s a classic poem from a talented Chinese poet, Li Qingzhao. According to history, her works often depict wine’s effect on her emotions and thoughts. For Qingzhao, wine is enchanting. Of course, it is.
Light mists and heavy clouds,
melancholy the long dreay day,
In the golden cencer
the burning incense is dying away.
It is again time
for the lovely Double-Nith Festival;
The coolness of midnight
penetrates my screen of sheer silk
and chills my pillow of jade.
After drinking wine at twilight
under the chrysanthemum hedge,
My sleeves are perfumed
by the faint fragrance of the plants.
Oh, I cannot say it is not enchanting,
Only, when the west wind stirs the curtain,
I see that I am more graceful
than the yellow flowers.
2. A Drinking Song by William Butler Yeats. A truly wonderful piece, Irish poet and Nobel Prize literature awardee, William Butler Yeats reveals his direct understanding of life.
WINE comes in at the mouth
And love comes in at the eye;
That’s all we shall know for truth
Before we grow old and die.
I lift the glass to my mouth,
I look at you, and I sigh.
3. Château Margaux by Francis Saltus Saltus – Yes, wine is powerful. Whether you’re attracted from the taste or aroma, once you indulge, it’s a unique experience. Wine unlocks hidden emotions and thoughts. American poet Francis Saltus Saltus knew about this.
There is a power within the succulent grape
That made thee, stronger than all human power.
It baffles death in its exulting hour,
And leaves its victim fortune to escape.
Thy cheering drops can magically drape
Atrocious thoughts of doom with bloom and flower,
Turning to laughing calm care’s torment sour,
And flooding dreams with many a gentle shape.
Ecstatic hope and resurrection lie
In thy consoling beauty, and whene’er
Pale mortals sip thee, bringing soothing peace,
I see a blue and orange-scented sky,
A warm beach blessed by God’s untainted air,
Circling the snowy parapets of Nice!
4. The Vine-Shroud by Percy Bysshe Shelley. Regarded as a one of the greatest lyric poets in the English language, Percy Bysshe Shelley penned an awe-inspiring wine poem, The Vine-Shroud. It’s a fragment of an unfinished poem, which is published posthumously by his second wife, Mary Shelley.
Flourishing vine, whose kindling clusters glow
Beneath the autumnal sun, none taste of thee;
For thou dost shroud a ruin, and below
The rotting bones of dead antiquity.