April 30th. last day of National Poetry Month, so I thought I might finish it off with a bang. As usual one of my own, but a couple of others I like, and a wee film about Herbert Read, anarchist poet, writer, and art critic.
First one by Herbert Read on the fascist bombing of Spain during the Spanish civil war.
Bombing Casualties In Spain.
Dolls' faces are rosier but these are children
their eyes not glass but gleaming gristle
dark lenses in whose quicksilver glances
the sunlight quivered. These blenched lips
were warm onceand bright with blood
held in moist bleb of flesh
not split and spatter'd in tousled hair.
In these shadowy tresses
red petals did not always
thus clot and blacken to scar.
These are dead faces.
wasps' nests are not so wanly waxen
wood embers not so greyly ashen.
They are laid out in ranks
like paper lanterns that have fallen
after a night of riot
extinct in the dry morning air.
Familiarity Breeds Contempt.
Now television has allowed the proles
to have a look at the eminent,
we sans-culottes can scan with great intent
their skins for pimples, wens and blackhead-holes,
quite pleased to find they too have scars and moles
just like the more plebian element.
Such epidermal flaws on dame and gent
bring the Mob close to those with Higher Goals.
Now we're all privileged to watch a lord
waggling his eyebrows or large moustache.
You don't get worried till They start to speak
and now that none of them has ssaid a word
worth listening to. What earns them all that cash?
Why didn't The Revolution start last week?
A New Dawn.
Today we live in a peace
midst a thousand pygmy wars;
a humanity bankrupt by its past
dragged wearily through darkness and despair
yearns for a day that's cast
long, warm and fair,
a dawn that sees humankind dicard
its class, its nation and prepare
to grind outworn creeds to dust,
so mankind naked is revealed,
then moving with common cause,
what such a dawn may yield.
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