...it's not dark yet, but it's gettin' there...

October 06, 2004

Wednesday Is Poetry Day

How different is this war we are fighting now. Compared to wars of the distant past.

Thomas Hardy (1840-1928) writes about a once universal irony among soldiers:

      'Had he and I but met
      By some old ancient inn,
We should have sat us down to wet
      Right many a nipperkin!

      'But ranged as infantry,
      And staring face to face,
I shot at him as he at me,
      And killed him in his place.

      'I shot him dead because --
      Because he was my foe,
Just so: my foe of course he was;
      That's clear enough; although

      'He thought he'd 'list, perhaps,
      Off-hand like -- just as I --
Was out of work -- had sold his traps --
      No other reason why.

      'Yes; quaint and curious war is!
      You shoot a fellow down
You'd treat if met where any bar is,
      Or help to half-a-crown.'

In this current war of ours, i doubt you'd find many on our side who'd share Hardy's poignant sentiment.

Posted by annika, Oct. 6, 2004 |
Rubric: Poetry


Nah, these guys are whack jobs. Like the little soldierette prison guard said, "The fuck women for children, and boys for fun".

Posted by: Casca on Oct. 6, 2004

Indeed, the cultural gulf is wider with our current enemy than before. I remember reading this poem in high school in a discussion of the Cold War (which was of course still ongoing), and talking about the humanity of Russian soldiers...


Posted by: Hugo on Oct. 7, 2004