The Little Review (littlereview) wrote,
The Little Review
littlereview

Poem for Sunday


In the Suburbs
By Louis Simpson


There's no way out.
You were born to waste your life.
You were born to this middleclass life

As others before you
Were born to walk in procession
To the temple, singing.


From today's Poet's Choice in The Washington Post. Creeped me out, but Hirsh's commentary is wonderful: "It's complicated, being an American," the poet recognizes, "Having the money and the bad conscience, both at the same time." Here's another poem by Simpson:


Carentan O Carentan
By Louis Simpson


Trees in the old days used to stand
And shape a shady lane
Where lovers wandered hand in hand
Who came from Carentan.

This was the shining green canal
Where we came two by two
Walking at combat-interval.
Such trees we never knew.

The day was early June, the ground
Was soft and bright with dew.
Far away the guns did sound,
But here the sky was blue.

The sky was blue, but there a smoke
Hung still above the sea
Where the ships together spoke
To towns we could not see.

Could you have seen us through a glass
You would have said a walk
Of farmers out to turn the grass,
Each with his own hay-fork.

The watchers in their leopard suits
Waited till it was time,
And aimed between the belt and boot
And let the barrel climb.

I must lie down at once, there is
A hammer at my knee.
And call it death or cowardice,
Don't count again on me.

Everything's all right, Mother,
Everyone gets the same
At one time or another.
It's all in the game.

I never strolled, nor ever shall,
Down such a leafy lane.
I never drank in a canal,
Nor ever shall again.

There is a whistling in the leaves
And it is not the wind,
The twigs are falling from the knives
That cut men to the ground.

Tell me, Master-Sergeant,
The way to turn and shoot.
But the Sergeant's silent
That taught me how to do it.

O Captain, show us quickly
Our place upon the map.
But the Captain's sickly
And taking a long nap.

Lieutenant, what's my duty,
My place in the platoon?
He too's a sleeping beauty,
Charmed by that strange tune.

Carentan O Carentan
Before we met with you
We never yet had lost a man
Or known what death could do.

--------


Must go work so I can take my son to a birthday party at Shadowlands and then come home and edit the last segment of "Sons of Gondor" for the beta. ashinae! We actually finished it!

It is helpful to have this decision made for me:

Automatic Halloween Costume Generator by kendokamel
Your name
Your costumeDarth Vader
Created with quill18's MemeGen!


And let me explain something. The fact that I think Aragorn could possibly have loved Boromir, Faramir, Arwen and Eowyn simultaneously does NOT mean that I am ever, ever going to write or even read Aragorn/Legolas. I would probably write Aragorn/Gandalf before Aragorn/Legolas. I LOATHE Aragorn/Legolas and find it revoltingly OOC even under the best of circumstances. Also, though I can OT3 or 4 or 5 Aragorn, Legolas ends up with Gimli post-Fellowship and before Fellowship it's fine with me if you want him with Haldir, Elrond or some other Elf but NOT ARAGORN. In my universe, no way does Aragorn cheat on Arwen with another Elf! Sheesh!

I feel wrong about being happy not that the Marlins won but that the Yankees lost. I am trying to point out to myself that it is far better to have had the Marlins there to win than to have had the Cubs there and watched them lose, but it is small consolation.
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