Tuesday poem by Gerard Manley Hopkins


Glory be to God for dappled things—

For skies of couple-colour as a brinded cow;

For rose-moles all in stipple upon trout that swim;

Fresh-firecoal chestnut-falls; finches’ wings;

Landscape plotted and pieced—fold, fallow, and plough;

And áll trádes, their gear and tackle and trim.

All things counter, original, spare, strange;

Whatever is fickle, freckled (who knows how?)

With swift, slow; sweet, sour; adazzle, dim;

He fathers-forth whose beauty is past change:

Praise Him.

I wanted to post this poem as an extension of last week’s list poem: as Frances pointed out in her comment then, this Hopkins poem is also a great list! Wikipedia say it’s one of only three examples of Hopkins’s invented poetic form, a Curtal sonnet. I know that Wikipedia isn’t an entirely reliable source but if you’re interested to read what they have to say, try this link. Or if you just want to look at a picture of “rose-moles all in stipple” on a trout, here it is.

And do have a look at the other Tuesday poems.

7 Responses to “Tuesday poem by Gerard Manley Hopkins”

  1. mary mccallum Says:

    Oh joy! I can’t believe you put this poem up Belinda. This week as I worked on my ‘sonnet’ I investigated other sonnets and found out about GM’s curtals. I love this poem – I studied it at university – I can recite it by heart – but I didn’t know it was a curtal sonnet (explains the B in that particular course). Rediscovering Glory be to God for Dappled Things was perfect for me too this week because my children’s novel (nearly finished) has a character called Dappled Annie who plays in a hedge … So doubly thank you, triply thank you (the piccie too)… Have a lovely dappled day.

  2. admin Says:

    What a lovely coincidence, or maybe just a happy alignment of stars or fates or something. Whatever, I’m so glad to have supported all your hard work in some way. And so glad you told me!

  3. Kay Cooke Says:

    You know? I JUST about posted that poem last Tuesday … one of my all-time faves. Thanks for posting it and the comment about it too.

  4. Helen Lowe Says:

    Just signing in as another Gerard Manley Hopkins fan who has always loved this poem. I will check out the link to curtal sonnets.

  5. admin Says:

    Curtal sonnets sound a lot easier than regular ones – but then, regular one are fearsomely hard, as Mary recently attested, so “a lot easier” still isn’t a walk in the park. I’m kind of hoping that someone will post ‘The Windhover’ soon, it used to make me drunk with delight when I was a teenager.

  6. IFRS IAS Says:

    The grand essentials of happiness are something to do something to love and something to hope for.

  7. admin Says:

    That’s lovely!

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