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Poetry Magnum Opus

A Day Forever England


dedalus
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A little rill runs by this hidden hill

And we stretch ourselves under summer sun;

We lazily joke and talk our fill,

Young men whose lives have just begun.

 

The news is bad yet we don’t feel sad,

For what difference can it make to us?

The wasps and midges drive us mad,

But shortly we’ll go home by bus.

 

In a glance I take in the passing dance

Of the sky and fields and grass stalks puny;

My life hovers over its next advance,

In September I'll go up to uni.

 

A gentle breeze now whispers through the trees,

And idly I view the future unseen;

There will be no better times than these,

Lazy summer, 1914.

Drown your sorrows in drink, by all means, but the real sorrows can swim

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Last line of the last stanza HITS like running into a wall. I do like the rhymes IN the first line of each stanza and, of course, the end rhyme scheme throughout. That last line has double impact when one reads "In September I'll go up to uni."

 

Timely read, in that I recently finished Clive Owen and am now reading Rupert Brooke; next will be Sigfried Sassoon.

 

Try sending this in for publication!!

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Fluent, atmospheric, and knowledgeable as ever. The only nit I have is the syntax of L10 and the end rhyme use of "puny" which seems a little forced . The overall full rhyme scheme restricts a suitable match although it may be worth introducing the word "tunic"... but that's just me. :smile: Cheers. G.

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The puny/uni rhyme seems to me to be rather forced and I've been informed that the term uni is a neologism not in use at the time. I need to change it somehow but so far I haven't been able to think of anything apart from cutting the stanza completely ... any ideas??

Drown your sorrows in drink, by all means, but the real sorrows can swim

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Si Senor. No mas rhyming. Just tell it.

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Occasionally I like to play around with old-fashioned forms ... mainly to see if I can still do it!

Drown your sorrows in drink, by all means, but the real sorrows can swim

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"College" may offer an alternative and the opportunity for apt ambiguity on L10.

Your overall choice of language works very well.

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  • 1 month later...
Frank E Gibbard

I thought uni was as you say Bren an anachronism but loving the idea of this and the message's savagish irony. Frank

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From an article: "History, as Mark Twain noted, doesn’t repeat itself, but it rhymes." Mea culpa.

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Yes, it's an anachronism, but doesn't that fit the piece better? What was the phrase in 1914?

 

I agree with all the comments above, and not being a fan of rhyming either- I still find this works as part of the set and setting.

 

Excellent Work!

 

Juris

thegateless.org Come on over and check out my poetry substack y'all;-) Or if your bored, head to the Zazzle store: https://www.zazzle.com/store/gateless. If you buy anything I lose a bet, so consider that before you violate the digital rules.

 

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  • 2 weeks later...

This is a fine work, Brendan.

 

The puny/uni rhyme seems to me to be rather forced and I've been informed that the term uni is a neologism not in use at the time. I need to change it somehow but so far I haven't been able to think of anything apart from cutting the stanza completely ... any ideas??

 

I like it. It's not so forced when taken in context: the words of a young soldier-poet.

 

Tony

Here is a link to an index of my works on this site: tonyv's Member Archive topic

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  • 2 months later...
David W. Parsley

Ferocious irony facilitated by internal rhymes, deceptively easy rhythms. And yet the poem also celebrates the innocence of the time in its own way. The title begs such a consideration, as if perhaps that innocence, once having assimilated the shock of wholesale mechanized death, the advent of weapons of mass destruction, was also the inner backbone of iron resolve that would not crumble in the face of it, unassailable and true. Forever.

 

Thank you, Brendan (I think!),

- Dave

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David W. Parsley

Weighing in on the "uni" discussion: I can't find a better rhyme and I think it worth the work to concoct new rhymes for lines 2 and 4. Besides the "grass stalks puny" as a period piece force rhyme, is a little too period for my tastes. It would not have been practiced by any of the poets cited by dc above. I think you can take a respectful step closer to their tradition and still maintain the jaundiced-but-secretly-appreciative tone.

 

Nice work.

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