Tuesday, 26 January 2010 13:23
One of my favourite poems from when I was small. (Although I do remember snootily pointing out to my mum that a light-year was a measure of distance, not time!)

R. C. Scriven, 'The Marrog'

My desk's at the back of the class
And nobody, nobody knows
I'm a Marrog from Mars
With a body of brass
And seventeen fingers and toes.
Wouldn't they shriek if they knew
I've three eyes in the back of my head?
And my hair is bright purple
My nose is deep blue
And my teeth are half yellow, half red.
My five arms are silver, and spiked
With knives on them sharper than spears.
I could go back right now, if I liked
And return in a million light-years -
I could gobble them all,
For I'm seven foot tall
And I'm breathing green flames from my ears.
Wouldn't they yell if they knew,
If they guessed that a Marrog was here?
Ha-ha, they haven't a clue -
Or wouldn't they tremble with fear!
"Look, look, a Marrog"
They'd all scream - and SMACK
The blackboard would fall and the ceiling would crack
And the teacher would faint, I suppose.
But I grin to myself, sitting right at the back
And Nobody, nobody knows.
No doubt they’ll soon get well; the shock and strain
Have caused their stammering, disconnected talk.
Of course they’re ‘longing to go out again,’—
These boys with old, scared faces, learning to walk.
They’ll soon forget their haunted nights; their cowed
Subjection to the ghosts of friends who died,—
Their dreams that drip with murder; and they’ll be proud
Of glorious war that shatter’d all their pride...
Men who went out to battle, grim and glad;
Children, with eyes that hate you, broken and mad.

- Siegried Sassoon, 1917

Iraqi poetry

Sunday, 23 October 2005 18:26
Where's the joy in sorting through a whole run of Modern Poetry in Translation unless you're going to read a couple of the poems?

Bulland al-Haydari, 'So That We Do Not Forget' )

Fadhil al-Azzawi, from 'Every Morning The War Gets Up From Sleep' )
Two memes:

When you see this, post a poem in your journal.

John Donne, 'The Triple Foole' )

Edna St. Vincent Millay, 'Dirge Without Music' )

When you see this, post Shakespeare:

This is a part of Shakespeare's contributions to Sir Thomas More. The background is the anti-foreigners May Day riot of 1517, when a mob of apprentices temporarily took over London after a xenophobic speech given by a priest a few weeks before.

Grant them removed... )

From Romeo and Juliet, III.ii )

And combining the memes:

Shakespeare, Sonnet 55 )
I'm a mean mean TA, apparently. Oh, well...

Student favourites this semester:

Tony Harrison, 'National Trust' )

Gilbert and Sullivan, 'If You're Anxious For To Shine' )



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