Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, BLUE CANTON-WARE, by SARAH A. ATHEARN

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Classic and Contemporary Poetry

BLUE CANTON-WARE, by            
First Line: The shelves above my desk
Last Line: Till canton falls!
Subject(s): Ships & Shipping; Trade

The shelves above my desk
Hold treasured bits
Of Canton, Spode or Lowestoft.
Designs, by men of patient skill,
Show blue on white.

To look upon this ware
Is to inquire
Of how and when and where men wrought;
What potter's wheel did fashion
Cup, saucer, bowl?

What eastern art did blend
Each shade and line,
Or draft a tree, pagoda, bridge;
Some fruit or people small
For me to ponder?

Once ships conveyed such store
To this, our coast,
From England or the Orient;
Now ships with wings, strange cargo
Bear to Canton.

While wave-lengths echo make:
"Canton is bombed!"
And men neglect their peaceful crafts
To fill their place with evil strife
Till Canton falls!

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