We Come From Far *

WE  COME  FROM  FAR

By XANADU

Little I know except that here we are
Lost in the woods like children. Yet to me
An inner voice intones, We come from far,
The fallen angels of humanity.

Laugh, scoff, put on the cynic’s sneer.
Rage, rage at the stars, and crucify
The god in your own heart for being here,
Ignorant of the art of how to die.

It’s a long journey, friend, over rough terrain,
With many pits and traps for wretched mortals.
Here pleasures often bring us bitter pain.
Like pretty flies, we buzz in scented bottles.

Strange voices soon will whisper in your ear:
‘We come from far to serve our sentence here.’

16 thoughts to “We Come From Far *”

  1. A beautiful poem, with LD following all the rules of prosody, which ensures that the poem has a mathematical structure and musicality. In fact, this is a classic Shakespearean sonnet (14 lines) written in iambic pentameters (5 stresses to each line or 10 syllables).

    For those who understand prosody, the two lines which appear to have 11 syllables in fact have 10 syllables, because the final syllable is unstressed (i.e. not counted). I refer to lines 10 and 12 at the end of the poem. (The words “mortals” and “bottles” are counted as having only 1 syllable each not 2 … and these are known as “feminine rhymes”. All the other rhymes in the poem are known as “masculine rhymes”)

    Am I boring you? If so, I apologize. This is ghastly habit I have as a school marm. My bad!

    BTW, the 10-syllable line is used throughout Shakespeare (in his blank verse plays), in Spenser (“The Faerie Queene”), and in Milton’s great poem “Paradise Lost”. In modern times, T.S. Eliot makes use of the same 10-syllable line, the iambic pentameter, in some of his best poems.

    Exactly the same 10-syllable line with the A-B-A-B rhyme scheme which Lasha uses in her above sonnet, you will find this used by T.S. Eliot in “The Waste Land”.

    For example, in this brilliant quatrain, which is a pastiche or imitation of a poem by the 18th-century poet Oliver Goldsmith:

    When lovely woman stoops to folly and
    Paces about her room again, alone,
    She smoothes her hair with automatic hand,
    And puts a record on the gramophone.

    https://www.poetryfoundation.org/poems/47311/the-waste-land

    1. Those who understand prosody (whatever that means) might be too busy to listen to their own translation that only ones heart can provide. If a poet in Timbuktu or any other place in space and time touches every single individuals heart with a symphony of words – the poem still might encounter too many restrictions to enter the “noble Gentleman’s club of prosody”.

    1. Can you explain to me the meaning of the two lovers sitting in the rose garden after twilight, looking into each other’s eyes? . . . Can you explain to me the meaning of the sad violin music, drifting over the rooftops of the sleeping city? . . . Can you explain to me the song of the nightingale in the depths of the wood late at night?

      If you can do that, I will explain to you the meaning of this poem.

      And it will still mean nothing to you! 🙂

      1. Sunlight on water, dazzling!. . . a beautiful woman’s face, her eyes full of magic and mystery! . . . do these things need to have a “meaning”?

    2. re Can anyone please explain the meaning of this poem in simple prose.

      Sure, here you go: WE ARE IN HELL.

      Hope that helps. Have a Nice Day.

  2. Hello Admin
    I sent a comment but it was not posted. Did make a mistake?

    ADMIN: The comments you posted have all been published.

  3. All right let me try again,
    Saki you don’t need to be sarcastic. I was not belittling the poem. I am not a poet and English is no my mother tongue. I was just trying to understand the inner meaning of the poem in simple prose. I wish I can write or express a beautiful poem like this.

    1. I was not being “sarcastic”. I was being polite. I was simply stating the simple fact that birds sing songs, and they cannot be expected to explain the “meaning” of their songs to fools who ask them: “Ok beautiful bird, what are you saying?”

      Would you ask Beethoven, “Hey Ludwig, what is the meaning of your Ninth Symphony?” No, you wouldn’t. Not if you had any sense.

      In any case, to quote the great English poet William Blake, “The fool sees not the same tree as the wise man sees.” The same poem has totally different meanings, depending on who reads it: a fool or a wise man, a genius or a moron.

      Understand?

  4. OK Saki, let’s close the chapter. I am no more commenting on this thread. Its looks like you and I are living in different planets and talking in different languages. As an example you may consider your latest post as ‘polite’ also but to me its harsh in language and in meaning. May God bless you.

      1. Today, October First, today is the feast day of the Catholic Saint, Saint Therese of Lisieux, Lasha’s favorite Catholic saint! The Catholic feast day WE look forward to The Most! I guess Lasha’s deep in prayer and meditation today that’s why we’re not hearing from her today, just the Sound of Silence do we hear.

        Mother Monica I’m sure is in the chapel lighting votive candles and saying prayers for us, her students, her charges. Sister Mother is praying us students pass all of her litmus tests and don’t wind-up in Spam for “thought criminals” and “blasphemers”, “reprobates and amaleks”.

        Saint Therese of Lisieux composed many poems herself. I guess Lasha composes poems because she wants to emulate her favorite Catholic saint. Bless “Catholic” Lasha’s poetic heart. 🙂

        VIDEO: 1.56 minutes
        https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q7xBdv9FKyk

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