Print this post Print this post

November 24, 1916

Paul Nash, "We Are Making a New World," 1918

409 words

Author’s Note:

A sestina written for all of our folk who were duped into being part of that first war to end all wars, that brother-killing-brother war, that beginning of our end.

I purposely did not date it November 11, so it would be more than merely a Veterans Day poem, although it is, also and most profoundly, a Veterans Day poem. 

We sit on duckboards or we stand in mud
Waiting, watching as the setting sun
Dips deep behind the ridge. Red clouds like blood
Thrown up against the blue-black sky make fun
Of all the blood thrown down, and thrown away,
All around us. We sit and wait for day

To end. We’ll be here when another day
Begins. As another morning finds mud—
(Mud and death)—and quite simply dawns away
Regardless. Up and down the yellow sun
Rises, sets, and decides some pretty fun
Can be had in skies the color of blood,

Unaware that down here, for us, it’s blood—
Über alles–that saturates each day
And stains our lives. Blood isn’t pretty fun.
To bleed or not to bleed here in the mud . . .
Watching the rising or the setting sun
Bleed into clouds, while we, too, bleed away

In little or in sudden bits. Away
We bleed… Away. Away in draughts of blood
And shattered bone. As all the while the sun
Throws bloody dawn or bloody ends of day
Into the skies that hang above the mud
That holds us. Surely there’s some sort of fun

To be had (terrible ironic fun
Of course… but still, it is there, in a way)
In looking upward from these slits of mud
And seeing winter skies awash in blood
When we’ve been awash in it, too, all day.
What clever things we – to share with the sun

The same bloodiness-es under the sun
That hang over the sun in clouds. What fun
We can find! Great fun every bloody day,
Watching the sun and comrades bleed away . . .
Sitting and watching while vistas of blood
Fall upon us, on duckboards or on mud.

Tonight, let the sun bleed itself away
To where fun is not a joke, soaked in blood,
Red clouds and mud. Let us have no next day.

Source: This sestina has appeared previously, without my note, in Mobius and in Soundzine (where one may hear it be professionally read).

 

If you enjoyed this piece, and wish to encourage more like it, give a tip through Paypal. You can earmark your tip directly to the author or translator, or you can put it in a general fund. (Be sure to specify which in the "Add special instructions to seller" box at Paypal.)
  • Video of the Day:

  • Kindle Subscription
  • Our Titles

    New Right vs. Old Right

    Lost Violent Souls

    Journey Late at Night: Poems and Translations

    The Non-Hindu Indians & Indian Unity

    Baader Meinhof ceramic pistol, Charles Kraaft 2013

    The Lightning and the Sun

    Jonathan Bowden as Dirty Harry

    The Lost Philosopher, Second Expanded Edition

    Trevor Lynch's A White Nationalist Guide to the Movies

    And Time Rolls On

    The Homo & the Negro

    Artists of the Right

    North American New Right, Vol. 1

    Forever and Ever

    Some Thoughts on Hitler

    Tikkun Olam and Other Poems

    Under the Nihil

    Summoning the Gods

    Hold Back This Day

    The Columbine Pilgrim

    Confessions of a Reluctant Hater

    Taking Our Own Side

    Toward the White Republic

    Distributed Titles

    Demon

    Proofs of a Conspiracy

    Fascism viewed from the Right

    The Wagnerian Drama

    Fascism viewed from the Right

    Notes on the Third Reich

    Morning Crafts

    New Culture, New Right

    An eagle with a shield soaring upwards

    A Life in the Political Wilderness

    The Fourth Political Theory

    The Passing of the Great Race

    The Passing of a Profit & Other Forgotten Stories

    Fighting for the Essence

    The Arctic Home in the Vedas

    The Prison Notes

    It Cannot Be Stormed

    Revolution from Above

    The Proclamation of London

    Beyond Human Rights

    The WASP Question

    Can Life Prevail?

    The Jewish Strategy

    The Metaphysics of War

    A Handbook of Traditional Living

    The French Revolution in San Domingo

    The Revolt Against Civilization

    Why We Fight

    The Problem of Democracy

    The Path of Cinnabar

    Archeofuturism

    Tyr

    Siege

    On Being a Pagan

    The Lost Philosopher

    The Dispossessed Majority

    Might is Right

    Impeachment of Man

    Gold in the Furnace

    Defiance