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Thread: What's your favourite poem?

  1. #16
    Dirty Kiwi Senior Contributor
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    Poem lyrics of Darkness by George Gordon, Lord Byron.

    I had a dream, which was not all a dream.
    The bright sun was extinguish'd, and the stars
    Did wander darkling in the eternal space,
    Rayless, and pathless, and the icy earth
    Swung blind and blackening in the moonless air;
    Morn came and went--and came, and brought no day,
    And men forgot their passions in the dread
    Of this their desolation; and all hearts
    Were chill'd into a selfish prayer for light:
    And they did live by watchfires--and the thrones,
    The palaces of crowned kings--the huts,
    The habitations of all things which dwell,
    Were burnt for beacons; cities were consum'd,
    And men were gather'd round their blazing homes
    To look once more into each other's face;
    Happy were those who dwelt within the eye
    Of the volcanos, and their mountain-torch:
    A fearful hope was all the world contain'd;
    Forests were set on fire--but hour by hour
    They fell and faded--and the crackling trunks
    Extinguish'd with a crash--and all was black.
    The brows of men by the despairing light
    Wore an unearthly aspect, as by fits
    The flashes fell upon them; some lay down
    And hid their eyes and wept; and some did rest
    Their chins upon their clenched hands, and smil'd;
    And others hurried to and fro, and fed
    Their funeral piles with fuel, and look'd up
    With mad disquietude on the dull sky,
    The pall of a past world; and then again
    With curses cast them down upon the dust,
    And gnash'd their teeth and howl'd: the wild birds shriek'd
    And, terrified, did flutter on the ground,
    And flap their useless wings; the wildest brutes
    Came tame and tremulous; and vipers crawl'd
    And twin'd themselves among the multitude,
    Hissing, but stingless--they were slain for food.
    And War, which for a moment was no more,
    Did glut himself again: a meal was bought
    With blood, and each sate sullenly apart
    Gorging himself in gloom: no love was left;
    All earth was but one thought--and that was death
    Immediate and inglorious; and the pang
    Of famine fed upon all entrails--men
    Died, and their bones were tombless as their flesh;
    The meagre by the meagre were devour'd,
    Even dogs assail'd their masters, all save one,
    And he was faithful to a corse, and kept
    The birds and beasts and famish'd men at bay,
    Till hunger clung them, or the dropping dead
    Lur'd their lank jaws; himself sought out no food,
    But with a piteous and perpetual moan,
    And a quick desolate cry, licking the hand
    Which answer'd not with a caress--he died.
    The crowd was famish'd by degrees; but two
    Of an enormous city did survive,
    And they were enemies: they met beside
    The dying embers of an altar-place
    Where had been heap'd a mass of holy things
    For an unholy usage; they rak'd up,
    And shivering scrap'd with their cold skeleton hands
    The feeble ashes, and their feeble breath
    Blew for a little life, and made a flame
    Which was a mockery; then they lifted up
    Their eyes as it grew lighter, and beheld
    Each other's aspects--saw, and shriek'd, and died--
    Even of their mutual hideousness they died,
    Unknowing who he was upon whose brow
    Famine had written Fiend. The world was void,
    The populous and the powerful was a lump,
    Seasonless, herbless, treeless, manless, lifeless--
    A lump of death--a chaos of hard clay.
    The rivers, lakes and ocean all stood still,
    And nothing stirr'd within their silent depths;
    Ships sailorless lay rotting on the sea,
    And their masts fell down piecemeal: as they dropp'd
    They slept on the abyss without a surge--
    The waves were dead; the tides were in their grave,
    The moon, their mistress, had expir'd before;
    The winds were wither'd in the stagnant air,
    And the clouds perish'd; Darkness had no need
    Of aid from them--She was the Universe.

  2. #17
    Dirty Kiwi Senior Contributor
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    Not really a poem but..

    My story starts at sea...
    a perilous voyage to an unknown land...
    a shipwreck...
    the wild waters roar and heave...
    the brave vessel is dashed all to pieces, and all the helpless souls within her drowned...
    all save one...
    a lady...
    whose soul is greater than the ocean...
    and her spirit stronger than the sea's embrace...
    not for her a watery end, but a new life beginning on a stranger shore. It will be a love story...
    for she will be my heroine for all time. And her name will be Viola.

    Tom Stoppard.

  3. #18
    Armchair Worrier Senior Contributor bolo121's Avatar
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    How clear, how lovely bright,
    How beautiful to sight
    Those beams of morning play;
    How heaven laughs out with glee
    Where, like a bird set free,
    Up from the eastern sea
    Soars the delightful day.

    To-day I shall be strong,
    No more shall yield to wrong,
    Shall squander life no more;
    Days lost, I know not how,
    I shall retrieve them now;
    Now I shall keep the vow
    I never kept before.

    Ensanguining the skies
    How heavily it dies
    Into the west away;
    Past touch and sight and sound
    Not further to be found,
    How hopeless under ground
    Falls the remorseful day.

    AE Houseman

  4. #19
    In Memoriam Military Professional dave lukins's Avatar
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    [QUOTE=glyn;457573]Four lines Lukins?
    What about the rest?


    The lines I chose where the most thought provoking

  5. #20
    Military Professional
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    [QUOTE=dave lukins;457702]
    Quote Originally Posted by glyn View Post
    Four lines Lukins?
    What about the rest?


    The lines I chose where the most thought provoking
    Economical with the facts, eh?
    Ever thought of going into politics?
    Semper in excretum. Solum profunda variat.

  6. #21
    Senior Reader Senior Contributor entropy's Avatar
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    Roses are red

    Violets are blue

    Holomorphic functions are boring

    And so are Fourier transforms

  7. #22
    In Memoriam Military Professional dave lukins's Avatar
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    [QUOTE=glyn;457704]
    Quote Originally Posted by dave lukins View Post

    Economical with the facts, eh?
    Ever thought of going into politics?
    Emperor of Cornwall sound tempting

  8. #23
    chankya's Avatar
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    "If" by Rudyard Kipling.
    "Of all the manifestations of power, restraint impresses men the most." - Thucydides

  9. #24
    Armchair Worrier Senior Contributor bolo121's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by entropy View Post
    Roses are red

    Violets are blue

    Holomorphic functions are boring

    And so are Fourier transforms
    Aieee!!! mathematics!!! the horror, the horror.......

  10. #25
    Military Professional
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    [QUOTE=dave lukins;457880]
    Quote Originally Posted by glyn View Post

    Emperor of Cornwall sound tempting
    Sod off, Lukins. That's the spot I've got my eye on!
    Semper in excretum. Solum profunda variat.

  11. #26
    An t-aimiréal chléthúil Senior Contributor crooks's Avatar
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    Oh, I forgot to add another Yeat's poem, called Sailing to Byzantium - it's about age and eternity (An old bard on a voyage from Ireland to Constantinople), and to be honest, it makes you think:

    THAT is no country for old men. The young
    In one another's arms, birds in the trees
    - Those dying generations - at their song,
    The salmon-falls, the mackerel-crowded seas,
    Fish, flesh, or fowl, commend all summer long
    Whatever is begotten, born, and dies.
    Caught in that sensual music all neglect
    Monuments of unageing intellect.

    An aged man is but a paltry thing,
    A tattered coat upon a stick, unless
    Soul clap its hands and sing, and louder sing
    For every tatter in its mortal dress,
    Nor is there singing school but studying
    Monuments of its own magnificence;
    And therefore I have sailed the seas and come
    To the holy city of Byzantium.

    O sages standing in God's holy fire
    As in the gold mosaic of a wall,
    Come from the holy fire, perne in a gyre,
    And be the singing-masters of my soul.
    Consume my heart away; sick with desire
    And fastened to a dying animal
    It knows not what it is; and gather me
    Into the artifice of eternity.

    Once out of nature I shall never take
    My bodily form from any natural thing,
    But such a form as Grecian goldsmiths make
    Of hammered gold and gold enamelling
    To keep a drowsy Emperor awake;
    Or set upon a golden bough to sing
    To lords and ladies of Byzantium
    Of what is past, or passing, or yet to come.
    Although it is not true that all conservatives are stupid people, it is true that most stupid people are conservative.
    - John Stuart Mill.

  12. #27
    Military Professional T_igger_cs_30's Avatar
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    No Heroes

    There were no heroes here
    Amongst the men who tramped through
    Rutted, quaking moor,
    Or crawled, cat-silent,
    Over skittering scree
    To prove the way.

    No heroes fought the blazing fires
    Which sucked the very blood from
    Ship and man alike.
    Or braved knife cold
    Without a thought
    To save a life.


    No heroes they, but ones who loved
    Sweet life and children's laugh,
    And dreamt of home
    When war allowed.
    They were but men.



    David Morgan

    <img src=http://C:\Documents and Settings\Wayne Smith\My Documents\002...My Pictures border=0 alt= />FEAR NAUGHT

    Should raw analytical data ever be passed to policy makers?

  13. #28
    Military Professional T_igger_cs_30's Avatar
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    Tanks

    O. C. A. CHILD

    YES, back at home I used to drive a tram;
    And Sammy, there, he was a driver, too
    He used to ride his racer--did Sir Sam;
    While pokey London streets was all I knew.


    But now, His Nibs and I, of equal rank,
    Are chummy as the paper and the wall,
    Each tooling of a caterpillar tank,
    Each waiting on the blest old bugle call.


    Say! Tanks are sport--when you get used to them,
    They're like a blooming railroad, self-contained;
    They lay their tracks, as you might say--pro tern,
    And pick 'em up, and there's good distance gained.


    They roar across rough country like a gale,
    They lean against a house and push it down,
    They're like a baby fortress under sail,
    And antic as a three-ring circus clown.


    Sam says they're slow. They may seem so to him--
    They can't show fancy mile-a-minute stuff,
    But when they charge, in armored fighting trim,
    You bet the Germans find 'em fast enough!


    Now Sam and I are waiting, side by side,
    To steam across von farm-land in the night;
    We'll take their blamed barbed wire in our stride,
    And stamp a German trench line out of sight.
    Last edited by T_igger_cs_30; 11 Feb 08, at 14:42.
    <img src=http://C:\Documents and Settings\Wayne Smith\My Documents\002...My Pictures border=0 alt= />FEAR NAUGHT

    Should raw analytical data ever be passed to policy makers?

  14. #29
    Armchair Worrier Senior Contributor bolo121's Avatar
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    `Twas brillig, and the slithy toves
    Did gyre and gimble in the wabe:
    All mimsy were the borogoves,
    And the mome raths outgrabe.

    "Beware the Jabberwock, my son!
    The jaws that bite, the claws that catch!
    Beware the Jubjub bird, and shun
    The frumious Bandersnatch!"

    He took his vorpal sword in hand:
    Long time the manxome foe he sought --
    So rested he by the Tumtum tree,
    And stood awhile in thought.

    And, as in uffish thought he stood,
    The Jabberwock, with eyes of flame,
    Came whiffling through the tulgey wood,
    And burbled as it came!

    One, two! One, two! And through and through
    The vorpal blade went snicker-snack!
    He left it dead, and with its head
    He went galumphing back.

    "And, has thou slain the Jabberwock?
    Come to my arms, my beamish boy!
    O frabjous day! Callooh! Callay!'
    He chortled in his joy.

    `Twas brillig, and the slithy toves
    Did gyre and gimble in the wabe;
    All mimsy were the borogoves,
    And the mome raths outgrabe.

    Lewis Caroll -The Jabberwocky

  15. #30
    Military Professional
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    Quote Originally Posted by bolo121 View Post
    `Twas brillig, and the slithy toves
    Did gyre and gimble in the wabe:
    All mimsy were the borogoves,
    And the mome raths outgrabe.

    "Beware the Jabberwock, my son!
    The jaws that bite, the claws that catch!
    Beware the Jubjub bird, and shun
    The frumious Bandersnatch!"

    He took his vorpal sword in hand:
    Long time the manxome foe he sought --
    So rested he by the Tumtum tree,
    And stood awhile in thought.

    And, as in uffish thought he stood,
    The Jabberwock, with eyes of flame,
    Came whiffling through the tulgey wood,
    And burbled as it came!

    One, two! One, two! And through and through
    The vorpal blade went snicker-snack!
    He left it dead, and with its head
    He went galumphing back.

    "And, has thou slain the Jabberwock?
    Come to my arms, my beamish boy!
    O frabjous day! Callooh! Callay!'
    He chortled in his joy.

    `Twas brillig, and the slithy toves
    Did gyre and gimble in the wabe;
    All mimsy were the borogoves,
    And the mome raths outgrabe.

    Lewis Caroll -The Jabberwocky
    When the Reverend gentleman wrote that it was possible to buy laudunum at the chemist shop. What's the betting that he indulged himself?
    Semper in excretum. Solum profunda variat.

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