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Boudica
19th July 2010, 18:49
Carol Anne Duffy writes poem for Henry Allingham - Telegraph (http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/5937961/Carol-Anne-Duffy-writes-poem-for-Henry-Allingham.html)

The Last Post, by Carol Ann Duffy

In all my dreams, before my helpless sight,
He plunges at me, guttering, choking droning.
If poetry could tell it backwards, true, begin
that moment shrapnel scythed you to the stinking mud...
but you get up amazed, watch bled bad blood
run upwards from the slime into its wounds;
see lines and lines of British boys rewind
back to their trenches, kiss the photographs from home -
mothers, sweethearts, sisters, younger brothers
not entering the story now
to die and die and die
Dulce - No - Decorum - No - Pro patria mori
You walk away.
You walk away; drop your gun (fixed bayonet)
like all your mates do too -
Harry, Tommy, Wilfred, Bert -
and light a cigarette.
There's coffee in the square,
warm French bread
and all those thousands dead
are shaking dried mud from their hair
and queuing up for home. Freshly alive,
a lad plays Tipperary to the crowd, released
from History; the glistening, healthy horses fit for heroes, kings.
You lean against a wall,
your several million lives still possible
and crammed with love, work, children talent, English beer, good food.
You see the poet tuck away his pocket-book and smile.
If poetry could truly write it backwards,
then it would.

MaryPoppins
19th July 2010, 18:54
Blimey, I thought I was fed up before! :laugh

gricerboy
19th July 2010, 19:16
Blimey, I thought I was fed up before! :laugh

I thought you seemed a little shirt today Mary! Lol!

MaryPoppins
19th July 2010, 19:18
I thought you seemed a little shirt today Mary! Lol!

A little "shirt"?

gricerboy
19th July 2010, 19:21
A little "shirt"?

Oops, I meant to say shirty!

MaryPoppins
19th July 2010, 19:31
Oops, I meant to say shirty!

Me calling you a knob? Bit harsh, I admit. Sockie or not, no need for me to be mean.

Boudica
20th July 2010, 07:52
Blimey, I thought I was fed up before! :laugh

sorry wasn't meant to depress you, i think it is beautiful and very clever how she makes it seem like it's going backwards

Gibbon
20th July 2010, 08:23
sorry wasn't meant to depress you, i think it is beautiful and very clever how she makes it seem like it's going backwards

I think it's quite clever but not beautiful, free verse in my opinion doesn't lend itself to beautiful poetry although D H Lawrence comes close. It has no rythmn, even blank verse like Marlowe etc even though it doesn't rhyme has a rythmn due to its iambic pentameter.

This poem also doesn't make you work too hard with illusion etc, its all put on a plate for you and doesn't have that wistfulness of the great war poets.

Read Rupert Brookes The soldier and you will see what I mean although by no means have to agree.

dang65
20th July 2010, 08:41
I like Carol Ann Duffy. This one's good:

Prayer

Some days, although we cannot pray, a prayer
utters itself. So, a woman will lift
her head from the sieve of her hands and stare
at the minims sung by a tree, a sudden gift.

Some nights, although we are faithless, the truth
enters our hearts, that small familiar pain;
then a man will stand stock-still, hearing his youth
in the distant Latin chanting of a train.

Pray for us now. Grade 1 piano scales
console the lodger looking out across
a Midlands town. Then dusk, and someone calls
a child's name as though they named their loss.

Darkness outside. Inside, the radio's prayer -
Rockall. Malin. Dogger. Finisterre.

SupremeSpod
20th July 2010, 08:46
Me calling you a knob? Bit harsh, I admit. Sockie or not, no need for me to be mean.

Ok, own up, who's stolen MPs login?

Gibbon
20th July 2010, 08:58
I like Carol Ann Duffy. This one's good:

Prayer

Some days, although we cannot pray, a prayer
utters itself. So, a woman will lift
her head from the sieve of her hands and stare
at the minims sung by a tree, a sudden gift.

Some nights, although we are faithless, the truth
enters our hearts, that small familiar pain;
then a man will stand stock-still, hearing his youth
in the distant Latin chanting of a train.

Pray for us now. Grade 1 piano scales
console the lodger looking out across
a Midlands town. Then dusk, and someone calls
a child's name as though they named their loss.

Darkness outside. Inside, the radio's prayer -
Rockall. Malin. Dogger. Finisterre.

Thats good, I like the tight couplet to finish off.

Boudica
20th July 2010, 14:14
I think it's quite clever but not beautiful, free verse in my opinion doesn't lend itself to beautiful poetry although D H Lawrence comes close. It has no rythmn, even blank verse like Marlowe etc even though it doesn't rhyme has a rythmn due to its iambic pentameter.

This poem also doesn't make you work too hard with illusion etc, its all put on a plate for you and doesn't have that wistfulness of the great war poets.

Read Rupert Brookes The soldier and you will see what I mean although by no means have to agree.

thanks Gibbon

if i ever get this goddamn essay written i will look it up

i'm very ignorant about poetry i read phil which takes most of my brain most of the time

shaunbhoy
20th July 2010, 15:50
"Iambic Pentameter"

There's something you don't hear everyday.

:wink

MaryPoppins
20th July 2010, 15:51
Ok, own up, who's stolen MPs login?

Bugger off, I am sweet, me. :rolleyes:

shaunbhoy
20th July 2010, 15:54
Bugger off, I am sweet, me. :rolleyes:

I thought you were "Truly Scrumptious"?
Oh wait...............wrong film. Sorry........carry on!

MaryPoppins
20th July 2010, 15:56
I thought you were "Truly Scrumptious"?
Oh wait...............wrong film. Sorry........carry on!

Wrong film. Right as ever though SB.

Gibbon
21st July 2010, 06:52
thanks Gibbon

if i ever get this goddamn essay written i will look it up

i'm very ignorant about poetry i read phil which takes most of my brain most of the time

Well that stuff just smoked mine. Only done a bit, Plato's Laches and a bit on John Locke and Toleration with respect to cultural exemptions.

Poetry is very subjective and personal, what works for one person may not work for another. I was only giving my opinion and in no way meant to try and invalidate yours. I've only just got into myself through the Faber Book of Beasts which was a standard book on an OU course I've being doing, but I've carried on reading it after.

Good luck with the essay. I can't wait to get started again in Oct.