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Sara Teasdale

(8 August 1884 – 29 January 1933 / Missouri)

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Houses of Dreams

You took my empty dreams
And filled them every one
With tenderness and nobleness,
April and the sun.

The old empty dreams
Where my thoughts would throng
Are far too full of happiness
To even hold a song.

Oh, the empty dreams were dim
And the empty dreams were wide,
They were sweet and shadowy houses
Where my thoughts could hide.

But you took my dreams away
And you made them all come true --
My thoughts have no place now to play,
And nothing now to do.

Submitted: Tuesday, December 31, 2002

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  • Rookie - 356 Points Krishnakumar Chandrasekar Nair (12/31/2013 8:38:00 AM)

    An empty dream an empty boat
    That on high seas of fancy sail
    And when shafts of morning light intrudes
    The mind returns from the froth and gale.........

    Endearing poem. I welcome every one to my page and wishing all a very happy new year! (Report) Reply

  • Rookie Mark Jensen (12/31/2012 5:28:00 PM)

    This poem is about the irony of anticipation and satisfied desire, and perhaps also a sly dig at the quality of love brought to the speaker by the you who is referred to in stanzas 1 & 4 only. Has she realized she was more satisfied in her imaginative life when dreaming of the ideal than she was living with the tenderness and nobleness of the lover?

    The second stanza seems the weakest. I don't think it contributes much to the poem, which would be stronger if it were eliminated altogether. And while I'm rewriting the poem, I'd change the first line of the last stanza to You took my empty dreams away and the last lines to My thoughts have now nowhere to play/And nothing much to do (why repeat now? - it's not so phonetically pleasing a syllable as to bear repetition) . (Report) Reply

  • Veteran Poet - 2,570 Points Savita Tyagi (12/31/2012 9:17:00 AM)

    Fascination of unfulfilled dreams is greater for the writer than the happy reality. Then again a world of imagination always holds a charm of high risk adventures. Lovely read. (Report) Reply

  • Freshman - 1,956 Points Pranab K Chakraborty (12/31/2011 11:36:00 PM)

    Nice circle poet tried to draw by words......
    ...the empty dreams were dim
    And the empty dreams were wide,
    They were sweet and shadowy houses
    Where my thoughts could hide.....

    Again he writes:

    My thoughts have no place now to play,
    And nothing now to do.

    A philosophical travelling through a writing. If dreams are fulfilled, thoughts are empty....But scientifically this expression deals with a dilemma. Thoughts are very independent, dreams are the different wings to stretch the mind to eternity. So, whether the two lines meet in a point or not, they will have their own action. So, many things would be there yet to think a long. New dreams could come out from the hidden cave of mind. So it is good poem but not superb from its philosophical point of view.

    Pranab k chakraborty. (Report) Reply

  • Rookie Assorted Thoughts (12/31/2011 7:57:00 PM)

    There is a lot of ambivalence here and it's hard to tell which side of the fence is greener?
    It poses more questions than answers.. quite an enigmatic poem
    Anywho, Cheers and Happy New Year to all : -) (Report) Reply

  • Freshman - 2,445 Points Is It Poetry (12/31/2009 11:16:00 AM)

    It is sad those few
    women like her...
    observing their bounty
    that could never be seen..
    Saw all that..
    and much, much more...iip (Report) Reply

  • Rookie - 212 Points Ramesh T A (12/31/2009 6:14:00 AM)

    Naturally without the lady love dream will be empty and blue dragging on endlessly in monotony and drudgery only! Indeed without love we are nowhere in the world! (Report) Reply

  • Rookie Kevin Straw (12/31/2009 5:38:00 AM)

    Does Pruchnicki have to be so personal when he comments? Can he not just give us his thoughts without insulting people? (Report) Reply

  • Rookie Kevin Straw (12/31/2009 5:35:00 AM)

    If her empty dreams were taken away, they cannot be now “too full of happiness”. She claims since her empty dreams were taken away that her thoughts cannot hold a song – but can hold a poem, obviously! How do thoughts hide in dreams? Sounds a bit Freudian to me! The scansion is ragged in places. (Report) Reply

  • Rookie - 637 Points Sadiqullah Khan (12/31/2009 5:29:00 AM)

    We will get this poem same day, next year. What a hope and a dream. Joe, I loved reading your lines here. (Report) Reply

  • Rookie Joseph Poewhit (12/31/2009 5:14:00 AM)

    The last line is really mind joggling. Occupation with dreams are only plans, Now left barren, so it seems with a reality of an empty tea cup. The cup being filled with the tea of dreams. Almost a death note, in losing dreams, maybe the final answer, in nothing to do. (Report) Reply

Read all 26 comments »

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