Verse by Caleb Mannan

If you like Robert Service, Longfellow, Tolkien, Milton, Robinson Jeffers, Whitman, Poe, The Bible, Tennyson, Ray Bradbury, life, death, Untermeyer, Pound, Donne, joy, sorrow, Siegfried Sassoon, Wilfred Owen, Robert Graves, children, beauty, Dante, Tom Waits, then set yourself down beside this fire.

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Stone Wall

XXXIII. Flaming Youth

Flaming youth, flame you on,
With a neon flame that begets the dawn.
Yet still, I say, it comes upon
A wave of flame that is soon gone.

Flaming youth, flame you on,
With licking flames that proceed the dawn
And shall soon devour your brawn
Unless you learn to hold your tongue.

XXXII. Peace then everlasting

Peace then everlasting, shall it still my soul?

XXXI. The Paradox of Sin

If I loathe that which I am, tis’ ‘cause I do not confess it,
I cannot confess it, for I loathe it.
If I loathe that which is my truth, I then loathe nature,
For the truth we loathe is the truth that frees us.

XXX. History Has a Name

In the halls of youth, these songs are sung,
In hallowed fields the bells are rung
And step after step, rung after rung,
The ladder to the future is deftly run.

In the epochs of past the ghosts they ran
Once flesh and blood colored by the tan.
Yet step after step, man after man,
Our fathers became one with the sand.

In the breath of time I write this rhyme
The breath is gone and cannot be tied
And minute after minute, line after line,
History has a name, and its name is mine.

XXIX. The Warrior

The warrior, he came a long way, for his people, and his pride
He forged the way for his people, with them right by his side
The warrior garnered praises, monetary, and in song
And the warrior on top the temple seems can do no wrong
But the warrior looks upon the people, wreaths and song upraised
And knows e’en in his honor that it is mislaid praise
For he has seen the angel of death upon the battle planes
And the angel of death has regarded him, but never called his name
And e’en has the angel spoken from behind his shrouded cowl:
“Kill as you will mortal, for it is spoken that you shall
And I am not to touch a hair upon your armored head
But I am here to name those you claim as your dead
No arrow shall fell you, no sword shall smite you down,
Go about your business, and earn your earth’s renown
Know that it is written, upon your earthly page,
That I, Death, a humble servant, go forth and hew your way.”

The warrior looks down upon his people, and tears come to his eyes
For the warrior in the face of Death has seen life and been made wise