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Posts Tagged ‘soldier’

…………….(from “As You Like It”)

…………………………………All the world’s a stage,
And all the men and women merely players:
They have their exits and their entrances;
And one man in his time plays many parts,
His acts being seven ages. At first the infant,
Mewling and puking in the nurse’s arms.
And then the whining school-boy, with his satchel
And shining morning face, creeping like snail
Unwillingly to school. And then the lover,
Sighing like furnace, with a woeful ballad
Made to his mistress’ eyebrow. Then a soldier,
Full of strange oaths and bearded like the pard,
Jealous in honour, sudden and quick in quarrel,
Seeking the bubble reputation
Even in the cannon’s mouth. And then the justice,
In fair round belly with good capon lined,
With eyes severe and beard of formal cut,
Full of wise saws and modern instances;
And so he plays his part. The sixth age shifts
Into the lean and slipper’d pantaloon,
With spectacles on nose and pouch on side,
His youthful hose, well saved, a world too wide
For his shrunk shank; and his big manly voice,
Turning again toward childish treble, pipes
And whistles in his sound. Last scene of all,
That ends this strange eventful history,
Is second childishness and mere oblivion,
Sans teeth, sans eyes, sans taste, sans every thing.

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“What is the real good?”
I ask in musing mood.

“Order,” said the law court;
“Knowledge,” said the school;
“Truth,” said the wise man;
“Pleasure,” said the fool;
“Love,” said the maiden;
“Beauty,” said the page;
“Freedom,” said the dreamer;
“Home,” said the sage;
“Fame,” said the soldier;
“Equity,” said the seer.
Spake my heart fully sad:
“The answer is not here.”
 

Then within my bosom
Softly this I heard:
“Each heart holds the secret:
‘Kindness’ is the word.”

 

 

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2dQN59g

A butterfly that would a bomber be,
To rise and take its load, as if a shell,
To drop upon the world the fragrancy
Of petals, would spread peace and wish it well.

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photo by Photonut at
http://www.rgbstock.com/photo/2dQN59g/Butterfly

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© Dennis Allen Lange and thebardonthehill.wordpress.com, 2017.

 

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What was that man General George Custer?
A hero? A braggart? All bluster?
A peacock for public and papers?
No substance, mere image and vapors? 

What was that man General George Custer?
A name that should live on in luster?
Or was he a fool who crusaded
For honor – so error pervaded? 

At Big Horn the big man was little;
His life and his men’s were all brittle.
A soldier, he sought fame and glory
His death, to this day, is the story.

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© Dennis Lange and thebardonthehill.wordpress.com, 2015.

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…………………..( (for Flag Day, 2015)

Consider well the flag we raise and fly –
The colors sharp and clear, the stripes and stars cohere.
For it and freedom, many had to die.

It ripples in the wind against the sky
The popping that we hear seems guns that killed the dear.
Consider well the flag we raise and fly.

Some seamstress sowed the symbol that we buy.
But soldier, pioneer sowed blood that flowed a tear.
For flag and freedom, many had to die.

The ones who came before us – glorify.
Their hardship was severe; their wisdom without peer.
Consider well the flag we raise and fly.

Here and abroad was heard the battle cry –
The colors, front, not rear, the flag we now revere.
For it and freedom many, had to die.

Now o’er the greatest land, we hoist it high.
In foes, it fosters fear; from friends it brings a cheer.
Consider well the flag we raise and fly;
For it and freedom, many had to die.

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© Dennis Lange and thebardonthehill.wordpress.com, 2015.

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By the old Moulmein Pagoda, lookin’ eastward to the sea,
There’s a Burma girl a-settin’, an’ I know she thinks o’ me;
For the wind is in the palm-trees, an’ the temple-bells they say:
“Come you back, you British soldier; come you back to Mandalay!”
…Come you back to Mandalay,
Where the old Flotilla lay:
Can’t you ‘ear their paddles chunkin’ from Rangoon to Mandalay?
On the road to Mandalay,
Where the flyin’-fishes play,
An’ the dawn comes up like thunder outer China ‘crost the Bay!

“Er petticoat was yaller an’ ‘er little cap was green,
An’ ‘er name was Supi-yaw-let – jes’ the same as Theebaw’s Queen,
An’ I seed her fust a-smokin’ of a whackin’ white cheroot,
An’ a-wastin’ Christian kisses on an ‘eathen idol’s foot:
Bloomin’ idol made o’ mud –
What they called the Great Gawd Budd –
Plucky lot she cared for idols when I kissed ‘er where she stud!
On the road to Mandalay
Where the flyin’-fishes play,
An’ the dawn comes up like thunder outer China ‘crost the Bay!

When the mist was on the rice-fields an’ the sun was droppin’ slow,
She’d git ‘er little banjo an’ she’d sing “Kulla-lo-lo!”
With ‘er arm upon my shoulder an’ her cheek agin my cheek
We useter watch the steamers an’ the hathis pilin’ teak.
Elephints a-pilin’ teak
In the sludgy, squdgy creek,
Where the silence ‘ung that ‘eavy you was ‘arf afraid to speak!
On the road to Mandalay
Where the flyin’-fishes play,
An’ the dawn comes up like thunder outer China ‘crost the Bay!

But that’s all shove be’ind me – long ago an’ fur away,
An’ there ain’t no ‘busses runnin’ from the Bank to Mandalay;
An’ I’m learnin’ ‘ere in London what the ten-year soldier tells:
“If you’ve ‘eard the East a-callin’, why, you won’t ‘eed naught else.”
No! you won’t ‘eed nothin’ else
But them spicy garlic smells
An’ the sunshine an’ the palm-trees an’ the tinkly temple bells;
On the road to Mandalay
Where the flyin’-fishes play,
An’ the dawn comes up like thunder outer China ‘crost the Bay!

I am sick o’ wastin’ leather on these gritty pavin’-stones,
An’ the blasted Henglish drizzle wakes the fever in my bones;
Tho’ I walks with fifty ‘ousemaids outer Chelsea to the Strand,
An’ they talks a lot o’ lovin’, but wot do they understand?
Beefy face an’ grubby ‘and –
Law! wot do they understand?
I’ve a neater, sweeter maiden in a cleaner, greener land!
On the road to Mandalay
Where the flyin’-fishes play,
An’ the dawn comes up like thunder outer China ‘crost the Bay!

Ship me somewheres east of Suez where the best is like the worst,
Where there aren’t no Ten Commandments, an’ a man can raise a thirst;
For the temple-bells are callin’, an’ it’s there that I would be –
By the old Moulmein Pagoda, lookin’ lazy at the sea –
On the road to Mandalay,
Where the old Flotilla lay,
With our sick beneath the awnings when we went to Mandalay!
Oh, the road to Mandalay,
Where the flyin’-fishes play,
An’ the dawn comes up like thunder outer China ‘crost the Bay!

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