Archives for posts with tag: WWI
Starr 031007-0039 Danger - Unexploded Ordnance - Restricted Area - sign

Forest & Kim Starr [CC-BY-3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0)%5D, via Wikimedia Commons

November punched its winds at us.
Blind, we raked remembrance
and glory. Blind grot from combat
now in books
is still our iron harvest.


Two sources were the inspiration for this poem. A friend’s Facebook status about the discovery of an unexploded shell in his local Swedish neighbourhood prompted me to look up a little about these doodads.

UXO (unexploded ordnance) is the acronym used for munitions that did not explode at the time they were employed and are still pose a threat when discovered at a later date. The UXO’s are also identified as ‘blind’. The ‘iron harvest’ is the colloquial term used for the residue shells unearthed by French and Flemish farmers in the erstwhile battlefields of WWI.

I have also been thinking about how our human experiences, both individual and collective, can sometimes take years to surface or reach a conclusion.

In truth, I have also been browsing through the poetry journal Agenda’s Requiem: The Great War edition. Perhaps this and the general culture of WWI commemoration have entered my sub-conscious.

However, there it was not my intention to produce a WWI or a war commentary poem. I merely wanted a poem. As with all my poems, hopefully it could travel to any time or place where humans leave their trail.

(It is also an irony that in isiXhosa, uxolo means peace.)

Twitter: @BeadedQuill
Facebook: BeadedQuill
Books:
In the Ocean: a year of poetry
Emily’s Poems for Modern Boys
Shining in Brightness: Selected Poems, 1999 – 2012

Advertisements
An old magazine advertisement for a Williams Typewriter courtesy of the Old Design Shop.

An old magazine advertisement for a Williams Typewriter courtesy of the Old Design Shop.

Sometimes I write material other than poetry. Here is an extract from a recent article I wrote about a young man who served during World War I. He had worked as a graphic designer and was fond of reciting poetry.

“Even his father was surprised when Julian Gould enlisted in 1915. Gould had gone to Art School, spent time in a Paris studio and at the time when war broke out, was engaged as a print designer. His friends and family knew him as a kind and considerate dreamer who studied French and loved poetry. His political sympathies were not overtly aligned to King and country

Like many men who went into battle, he lived by the bullet. Read the full article in the Public Catalogue Foundation’s November newsletter.

I have written other pieces for the newsletter including
an article about the Brontë Parsonage Museum,
The Grand Ol’ Skaters of York, an exploration of a winter scene by painter Jan Griffier I (c. 1645 – 1718), and
103 True Faces of Robert Burns, which considers a joyful, playful pastiche that reworks a well known portrait of the young Burns.

Twitter: @BeadedQuill
Facebook: BeadedQuill
Books:
In the Ocean: a year of poetry
Emily’s Poems for Modern Boys
Shining in Brightness: Selected Poems, 1999 – 2012