Saturday, December 31, 2011

Even more poems by Robert H. Brague

I didn’t plan to end the year on a somber note, but these poems have been telling me for some time now that they desire a larger audience. I did put them on the blog back in 2007, but most of you weren’t coming here then. Although I wrote these poems in 1975 and 1976, I think they still resonate as we begin 2012.


..........Sonnets for the Space Age, circa 1976
.....................by Robert H. Brague


......................................I

.......Technology has shrunk our modern world;
.......No room today for the miraculous.
.......In space a big blue marble has been hurled,
.......And astronauts report the marble’s us.
.......Computers speed man’s progress on its way
.......Without regard to race or sex or creed;
.......The federal grant’s the order of the day
.......Without regard to truth or cost or need.
.......So equal opportunities abound
.......(Minorities don’t ever fall from grace);
.......And new solutions, almost daily found,
.......Are rushed to cure the ills of Adam's race.
.......But seldom now does prayer storm Heaven’s gates:
.......Inside, the Lord sits patiently and waits.


......................................II

.......There was a time when life was slower-paced
.......And one could get to know his neighbor well.
.......Today each moment’s precious, none to waste.
.......Man’s much too busy hurrying toward Hell.
.......And like a lemming, jostled by the crowd,
.......He thrashes wildly with the drowning men;
.......He downs his drink and laughs a bit too loud,
.......And dashes out into the night again.
.......So helter-skelter, racing madly on,
.......He wears a mask to try to hide the lies;
.......His painted smile denies that time is gone,
.......But something doth betray him ’round the eyes.
.......Exhausted, spent, he plunges past the goal
.......To gain the world and lose his sacred soul.


......................................III

.......Polaris is a missile and a star,
.......The one deployed on restless submarine,
.......The other keeping vigil from afar
.......While nebulae and comets roam between.
.......Much nearer Earth, the evanescent moon
.......Maintains her distance from our planet’s face.
.......Perhaps she senses conflict coming soon,
.......The Armageddon of the human race.
.......So warily she orbits overhead.
.......A quarter-million miles into the void,
.......She too keeps guard. We talk of peace instead,
.......Let our guard down. With warheads unemployed,
.......While newsmen speak of cabinets and kings,
.......Calamity is waiting in the wings.


......................................IV

.......Three heavens stretch above Earth’s little pond:,
.......The daylight blue; the midnight’s starry host;
.......Incalculable distances beyond
.......These two, the one that modern men fear most.
.......(For if there is a Heaven they should gain,
.......A Hell to shun the day they pause to die,
.......Then all their science simply can’t explain
.......How in the merest twinkling of an eye…)
.......So, flippantly declaring it absurd,
.......Men laugh until their laughter turns to tears;
.......But Saul of Tarsus visited that third
.......And dared not speak of it for fourteen years.
.......If not till set of sun come out the stars,
.......Why balk at glories waiting behind Mars?


......................................V

.......No sooner had the missiles disappeared
.......Than waves of bombers rose up in their stead.
.......When all debris and rubble had been cleared,
.......We found almost a hundred million dead.
.......And some who lived were maimed, and some were charred,
.......And some no longer see, or hear, or walk;
.......And many, although outwardly unmarred,
.......No longer smile, no longer even talk.
.......For laughter is a thing of bygone days
.......When children played at imitation war.
.......Today most people stare with hollow gaze
.......Rememb’ring times, once real, that are no more.
.......When men cried, “Peace and safety,” all was lost.
.......We were not ready for the holocaust.

5 comments:

Pat - Arkansas said...

Deep thoughts, RWP, and well written. Thanks for the re-run.

Jeannelle said...

Your poetic words give much to ponder as this old year ends. Happy New Year to you.

rhymeswithplague said...

To Pat and to Jeannelle, two readers who have stuck with me longest and been there through thick and thin, a very "Happy New Year" to each of you, too!

A Lady's Life said...

so true.The computers have taken away a lot of jobs and left people in the dust.
Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year to you and your family :)

LightExpectations said...

I've never been a big fan of poetry, which means the poems that do touch me have succeeded in breaking through the haze of pre-judgement. You have a style of poetry that I very much appreciate. Thank you for sharing!