Monday, May 31, 2010

Tuesday Poem: Alan Dugan's "One used to . . . "



















Untitled Poem

One used to be able to say
what Seneca said to Nero:
"However many people you kill
you can never kill your successor."
But now the joke may not
be necessarily true: we might
have done it already. So let's
remember what the poet Oppian said:
"The hunting of Dolphins is immoral
and the man who wilfully kills them
will not only not go to the gods
as a welcome sacrifice, or touch
their altars with clean hands, but will
even pollute the people under his own roof."

Tuesday Poem, a community of poets, is based in New Zealand.

10 comments:

  1. Dear Mim - this poem is the perfect (albeit terrible) synthesis for 'today' and all that is contained in and being asked of us during these times. The final lines - those spoken directly to the reader - bring me to my knees.
    Thank you.
    L, Claire

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  2. this cuts to the chase; and i like that pic of him, too, Mim. good one, all around!

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  3. What is to be done? I'm afraid this may be an unending catastrophe.

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  4. I love the photograph! so narrow shouldered....and upright...
    it's hard to watch the oil spill...we are so endlessly stupid, so bent on profit, so careless...
    thanks..

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  5. It's a very apposite poem for our times, I would say. Many thanks.

    Greetings from London.

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  6. Of course one can't help think of the Gulf of Mexico while reading this. Chilling and to the point. Thanks, Mim!

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  7. What an excellent choice. Thank you.

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  8. Mim-


    I have always loved Alan Dugan's work.


    He has some hard bark on him.


    He can be the antidote to sentimentality, like a glass of ice cold water or a broken leg.


    You continue to inspire me, without fail.



    yrs-


    tearful

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  9. It cheers me to hear from you all!

    Tearful: Yours for terse beauty . . .

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