Worth A Thousand Words

Today's Song

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Tomorrow? – It matters not
What it may hold for me.
And yesterday? – I have forgot –
It is enough to be.

The poet shows that he is focused on the present. He does not burden himself with thoughts of yesterday, nor with what might come the next; all that matters is the present.



The Soldiers

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I bring no flowers for the dead; my lips
Do not remember them. The weeping world
Makes holiday of death with flags unfurled:
Was not death victory for truth? Wax drips
In generous remembrance; tears eclipse
The run of blood; from pious censers twirled
With solemn dignity, behold: uncurled
The coils, the hate they call Apocalypse.

                Defeated dead, here is a song-bouquet
                I gathered from the slopes of silence. Take
                This pray’r, full of the grace of earth, I lay
                Before your fallen cross. They will forsake
                Your shrine; when ended is grief-holiday
                Pray’r will, with flags, be neatly tucked away

The poem speaks of the irony encapsulated within the holidays commemorating soldiers, heroes and other dead figures from the past. While during those holidays, much “respect” and “remembrance” is paid, the irony is that immediately the day after, all that “respect” and “remembrance” is quickly forgotten. It is representative of today’s fast-paced capitalist society: we only remember those that have died for the present (the future in their time) for a single day, and on all other days they lay forgotten, despite the fact that each and every moment of this “present” we enjoy was made possible by their sacrifice.



Eroica

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So now we are alone in this great waste
Of fragments of a lost and vanished world;
In this great vast where we, a million years
Ago, first heard the earth-song at cool of dawn;
First felt the brush of godly wings; looked up
And traced the pattern of eternal stars
Full of the grace of mystery; beheld
The dreaming, mist-enchanted wild of earth.
So long ago, we have forgotten how
To weep before the miracle of beauty;
Forgotten how the running of our blood
Was one with running water of all tides
Of all time.
                You and I, so long ago.
There in the wind-swept sunrise, grass beneath
Our knees, we took the earth for all its glory
And dedicated all our dreams to earth.
We are become inebriate with the grape
Earth-scented with its twice two thousand years:
The taste of death is on our drunken lips.

The poet shows sorrow at how “modern” society has undervalued nature; how mankind’s progress has caused us to disregard nature and its beauty. Whilst in the past, mankind gazed in wonder up the sky, appreciated the wonders of nature, in the present we no longer pay attention to such matters. Our views are no longer of earth, water and sky, but of steel, machine and fire. In the name of “progress” and “modernity,” mankind has used and abused nature to such an extent that we have destroyed it. What nature took millions of years to create, mankind destroys in two thousand years; and now, in the present, our wanton destructiveness and abuse is backfiring and threatens to destroy us as well.




Updates!

We haven't finished talking and sharing our insights about all these three poems because we ran out of time discussing the shortest poem in this page. Ironic... isn't it? We spent the whole hour discussing the shortest poem. It's short and some sort of not really worth to be noticed but when you really contemplate for an hour, you will clearly absorb or get the gist of the poem.