4S Ranch Allied Gardens Alpine Baja Balboa Park Bankers Hill Barrio Logan Bay Ho Bay Park Black Mountain Ranch Blossom Valley Bonita Bonsall Borrego Springs Boulevard Campo Cardiff-by-the-Sea Carlsbad Carmel Mountain Carmel Valley Chollas View Chula Vista City College City Heights Clairemont College Area Coronado CSU San Marcos Cuyamaca College Del Cerro Del Mar Descanso Downtown San Diego Eastlake East Village El Cajon Emerald Hills Encanto Encinitas Escondido Fallbrook Fletcher Hills Golden Hill Grant Hill Grantville Grossmont College Guatay Harbor Island Hillcrest Imperial Beach Imperial Valley Jacumba Jamacha-Lomita Jamul Julian Kearny Mesa Kensington La Jolla Lakeside La Mesa Lemon Grove Leucadia Liberty Station Lincoln Acres Lincoln Park Linda Vista Little Italy Logan Heights Mesa College Midway District MiraCosta College Miramar Miramar College Mira Mesa Mission Beach Mission Hills Mission Valley Mountain View Mount Hope Mount Laguna National City Nestor Normal Heights North Park Oak Park Ocean Beach Oceanside Old Town Otay Mesa Pacific Beach Pala Palomar College Palomar Mountain Paradise Hills Pauma Valley Pine Valley Point Loma Point Loma Nazarene Potrero Poway Rainbow Ramona Rancho Bernardo Rancho Penasquitos Rancho San Diego Rancho Santa Fe Rolando San Carlos San Marcos San Onofre Santa Ysabel Santee San Ysidro Scripps Ranch SDSU Serra Mesa Shelltown Shelter Island Sherman Heights Skyline Solana Beach Sorrento Valley Southcrest South Park Southwestern College Spring Valley Stockton Talmadge Temecula Tierrasanta Tijuana UCSD University City University Heights USD Valencia Park Valley Center Vista Warner Springs

Edmund Blunden: mental scars

His World War I experiences bleed through

  • First Rhymes
  • In the meadow by the mill
  •     I›d make my ballad,
  • Tunes to that would whistle shrill
  • And beat the blackbird’s ringing bill.—
  • But surely the innocent spring has died,
  • The sultry noon has hushed the bird,
  • The jingling word, the tune untried,
  • All in that meadow must have died.—
  • For that, the fuller speech of song
  •     Has charmed me,
  • And lulled my lonely hours along;
  • Though beauty’s truth that leads to-day
  •     My longing trials
  • Shone then like dewdrops in my way,
  • When “ Nature painted all things gay.”
  • Forefathers
  • Here they went with smock and crook,
  • Toiled in the sun, lolled in the shade,
  • Here they mudded out the brook
  • And here their hatchet cleared the glade:
  • Harvest-supper woke their wit,
  • Huntsmen’s moon their wooings lit.
  • From this church they led their brides,
  • From this church themselves were led
  • Shoulder-high; on these waysides
  • Sat to take their beer and bread.
  • Names are gone — what men they were
  • These their cottages declare.
  • Names are vanished, save the few
  • In the old brown Bible scrawled;
  • These were men of pith and thew,
  • Whom the city never called;
  • Scarce could read or hold a quill,
  • Built the barn, the forge, the mill.
  • On the green they watched their sons
  • Playing till too dark to see,
  • As their fathers watched them once,
  • As my father once watched me;
  • While the bat and beetle flew
  • On the warm air webbed with dew.
  • Unrecorded, unrenowned,
  • Men from whom my ways begin,
  • Here I know you by your ground
  • But I know you not within — 
  • There is silence, there survives
  • Not a moment of your lives.
  • Like the bee that now is blown
  • Honey-heavy on my hand,
  • From his toppling tansy-throne
  • In the green tempestuous land — 
  • I’m in clover now, nor know
  • Who made honey long ago.
  • The Poor Man’s Pig
  • Already fallen plum-bloom stars the green
  • And apple-boughs as knarred as old toads’ backs
  • Wear their small roses ere a rose is seen;
  • The building thrush watches old Job who stacks
  • The bright-peeled osiers on the sunny fence,
  • The pent sow grunts to hear him stumping by,
  • And tries to push the bolt and scamper thence,
  • But her ringed snout still keeps her to the sty.
  • Then out he lets her run; away she snorts
  • In bundling gallop for the cottage door,
  • With hungry hubbub begging crusts and orts,
  • Then like the whirlwind bumping round once more;
  • And sulky as a child when her play’s done.
Edmund Blunden

Edmund Blunden (1896-1974) was an English poet and writer who wrote verse, much of which reflected his experiences during World War I. Remarkably, he survived two years on the front line without being wounded physically (although he was gassed once during his time there); however, the mental scars from his experiences bleed through even poetry that made no direct reference to the war. He was a leading member of the Georgian poets, which included fellow World War I veterans, Rupert Brooks, Robert Graves and Siegfried Sassoon. The Georgian Poets were defined by their inclusion in a series of anthologies published in England between 1911 and 1922, and were seen as precursors to the Modernist movement in poetry. Blunden was nominated six times for the Nobel Prize in literature.

Here's something you might be interested in.
Submit a free classified
or view all

Previous article

Public Health Officer/Science God thunders declaration from mountaintop: “THE PANDEMIC IS NOT OVER.”

Wooten = Wodan?
  • First Rhymes
  • In the meadow by the mill
  •     I›d make my ballad,
  • Tunes to that would whistle shrill
  • And beat the blackbird’s ringing bill.—
  • But surely the innocent spring has died,
  • The sultry noon has hushed the bird,
  • The jingling word, the tune untried,
  • All in that meadow must have died.—
  • For that, the fuller speech of song
  •     Has charmed me,
  • And lulled my lonely hours along;
  • Though beauty’s truth that leads to-day
  •     My longing trials
  • Shone then like dewdrops in my way,
  • When “ Nature painted all things gay.”
  • Forefathers
  • Here they went with smock and crook,
  • Toiled in the sun, lolled in the shade,
  • Here they mudded out the brook
  • And here their hatchet cleared the glade:
  • Harvest-supper woke their wit,
  • Huntsmen’s moon their wooings lit.
  • From this church they led their brides,
  • From this church themselves were led
  • Shoulder-high; on these waysides
  • Sat to take their beer and bread.
  • Names are gone — what men they were
  • These their cottages declare.
  • Names are vanished, save the few
  • In the old brown Bible scrawled;
  • These were men of pith and thew,
  • Whom the city never called;
  • Scarce could read or hold a quill,
  • Built the barn, the forge, the mill.
  • On the green they watched their sons
  • Playing till too dark to see,
  • As their fathers watched them once,
  • As my father once watched me;
  • While the bat and beetle flew
  • On the warm air webbed with dew.
  • Unrecorded, unrenowned,
  • Men from whom my ways begin,
  • Here I know you by your ground
  • But I know you not within — 
  • There is silence, there survives
  • Not a moment of your lives.
  • Like the bee that now is blown
  • Honey-heavy on my hand,
  • From his toppling tansy-throne
  • In the green tempestuous land — 
  • I’m in clover now, nor know
  • Who made honey long ago.
  • The Poor Man’s Pig
  • Already fallen plum-bloom stars the green
  • And apple-boughs as knarred as old toads’ backs
  • Wear their small roses ere a rose is seen;
  • The building thrush watches old Job who stacks
  • The bright-peeled osiers on the sunny fence,
  • The pent sow grunts to hear him stumping by,
  • And tries to push the bolt and scamper thence,
  • But her ringed snout still keeps her to the sty.
  • Then out he lets her run; away she snorts
  • In bundling gallop for the cottage door,
  • With hungry hubbub begging crusts and orts,
  • Then like the whirlwind bumping round once more;
  • And sulky as a child when her play’s done.
Edmund Blunden

Edmund Blunden (1896-1974) was an English poet and writer who wrote verse, much of which reflected his experiences during World War I. Remarkably, he survived two years on the front line without being wounded physically (although he was gassed once during his time there); however, the mental scars from his experiences bleed through even poetry that made no direct reference to the war. He was a leading member of the Georgian poets, which included fellow World War I veterans, Rupert Brooks, Robert Graves and Siegfried Sassoon. The Georgian Poets were defined by their inclusion in a series of anthologies published in England between 1911 and 1922, and were seen as precursors to the Modernist movement in poetry. Blunden was nominated six times for the Nobel Prize in literature.

Sponsored
Here's something you might be interested in.
Submit a free classified
or view all
Previous article

Save Alonzo Culver’s Queen Anne Victorian mansion in Carlsbad

Built in 1888 “with the charm of a more genteel era.”
Next Article

There's an art to falling

"I have built up my immunity, but I still get sick"
Comments
0

Be the first to leave a comment.

Sign in to comment

Sign in

Art Reviews — W.S. Di Piero's eye on exhibits Ask a Hipster — Advice you didn't know you needed Best Buys — San Diego shopping Big Screen — Movie commentary Blurt — Music's inside track Booze News — San Diego spirits City Lights — News and politics Classical Music — Immortal beauty Classifieds — Free and easy Cover Stories — Front-page features Excerpts — Literary and spiritual excerpts Famous Former Neighbors — Next-door celebs Feast! — Food & drink reviews Feature Stories — Local news & stories From the Archives — Spotlight on the past Golden Dreams — Talk of the town Here's the Deal — Chad Deal's watering holes Just Announced — The scoop on shows Letters — Our inbox [email protected] — Local movie buffs share favorites Movie Reviews — Our critics' picks and pans Musician Interviews — Up close with local artists Neighborhood News from Stringers — Hyperlocal news News Ticker — News & politics Obermeyer — San Diego politics illustrated Of Note — Concert picks Out & About — What's Happening Overheard in San Diego — Eavesdropping illustrated Poetry — The old and the new Pour Over — Grab a cup Reader Travel — Travel section built by travelers Reading — The hunt for intellectuals Roam-O-Rama — SoCal's best hiking/biking trails San Diego Beer — Inside San Diego suds SD on the QT — Almost factual news Drinks All Around — Bartenders' drink recipes Sheep and Goats — Places of worship Special Issues — The best of Sports — Athletics without gush Street Style — San Diego streets have style Suit Up — Fashion tips for dudes Theater Reviews — Local productions Theater antireviews — Narrow your search Tin Fork — Silver spoon alternative Under the Radar — Matt Potter's undercover work Unforgettable — Long-ago San Diego Unreal Estate — San Diego's priciest pads Waterfront — All things ocean Your Week — Daily event picks
4S Ranch Allied Gardens Alpine Baja Balboa Park Bankers Hill Barrio Logan Bay Ho Bay Park Black Mountain Ranch Blossom Valley Bonita Bonsall Borrego Springs Boulevard Campo Cardiff-by-the-Sea Carlsbad Carmel Mountain Carmel Valley Chollas View Chula Vista City College City Heights Clairemont College Area Coronado CSU San Marcos Cuyamaca College Del Cerro Del Mar Descanso Downtown San Diego Eastlake East Village El Cajon Emerald Hills Encanto Encinitas Escondido Fallbrook Fletcher Hills Golden Hill Grant Hill Grantville Grossmont College Guatay Harbor Island Hillcrest Imperial Beach Imperial Valley Jacumba Jamacha-Lomita Jamul Julian Kearny Mesa Kensington La Jolla Lakeside La Mesa Lemon Grove Leucadia Liberty Station Lincoln Acres Lincoln Park Linda Vista Little Italy Logan Heights Mesa College Midway District MiraCosta College Miramar Miramar College Mira Mesa Mission Beach Mission Hills Mission Valley Mountain View Mount Hope Mount Laguna National City Nestor Normal Heights North Park Oak Park Ocean Beach Oceanside Old Town Otay Mesa Pacific Beach Pala Palomar College Palomar Mountain Paradise Hills Pauma Valley Pine Valley Point Loma Point Loma Nazarene Potrero Poway Rainbow Ramona Rancho Bernardo Rancho Penasquitos Rancho San Diego Rancho Santa Fe Rolando San Carlos San Marcos San Onofre Santa Ysabel Santee San Ysidro Scripps Ranch SDSU Serra Mesa Shelltown Shelter Island Sherman Heights Skyline Solana Beach Sorrento Valley Southcrest South Park Southwestern College Spring Valley Stockton Talmadge Temecula Tierrasanta Tijuana UCSD University City University Heights USD Valencia Park Valley Center Vista Warner Springs
Close