3/26/2001

Plague

Filed under:General — eric @ 5:14 am

Livestock are burning across Great Britain and Europe. British poet David Anthony has written a villanelle, a formal poetic structure, about the events. I post it here, unapproved and copied from a mailing list I’m on:

Plague

The guns are loud across the land tonight.

Grim beacon flames flash out from shire to shire

and horror groans without an end in sight.

Best not to look as marksmen expedite

such slaughter! Hired to empty every byre,

the guns are loud. Across the land tonight

Spring flinches at the foulness of the blight

that lurks within the pall above each pyre,

and horror groans without an end in sight

of pallid flames where all is darkly bright.

So draw the drapes and turn the music higher–

the guns are loud across the land tonight!

Take up the children; tuck their blankets tight:

try not to let them see that life’s a liar

and horror groans. Without an end in sight

there seems no point, why carry on, why fight?

–not only cattle perish in the fire.

The guns are loud across the land tonight,

and horror groans without an end in sight.

— David Anthony, 2001

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