A Farewell To Martin Luther King Jr

If people bring so much courage to this world the world has to kill them to break them, so of course it kills them. The world breaks every one and afterward many are strong at the broken places. But those that will not break it kills. It kills the very good and the very gentle and the very brave impartially. If you are none of these you can be sure it will kill you too but there will be no special hurry. ~ Ernest Hemingway, A Farewell to Arms

April 4th, 1968 – Martin Luther King, Jr. is assassinated at a motel in Memphis, Tennessee.

When Can Their Glory Fade – A Reply To Tennyson

My reply to The Charge of the Light Brigade by Alfred Lord Tennyson

“When can their glory fade?”

When widows cry for a life betrayed.

When turns to dust what once a blade.

When sons have lost all they gave.

When called unjust what once thought brave.

When we see glory lies in a shallow grave.

Try – Suzanna Choffel

Spent most of last weekend listening to this song.

As the lyrics were no where to be found, I thought I would at least jot down and post the final verse:

This would is huge, but it can feel so small.

When you put yourself between four walls.

And all I want to do is go.

But instead I just stay here.

Comfort always lends a hand to fear.

Goodbye can be se hard to say and hear.

What do we have against ourselves?

That we don’t want to take each chance that comes our way.

And we just sit here in our fear, thinking some day, some day.

But me I am so bold, some days a dream that I just can’t afford.

I have to look it in the eye.. and try, I have to look it in the eye, try, I try, I try.

The Charge of the Light Brigade – Alfred Lord Tennyson

As a little boy I was taken to the old Middletown Carnegie Library quite often by my mom who was an avid reader. I’ll admit her passion for reading was lost on me, it was to be replaced with passions of my own. After all, we are of course “Chips off the old block”, but we are not the block.

While wondering around that old library one night waiting for mom, I came across a book of poetry by Alfred Lord Tennyson. Having nothing but time on my hands I brought the book back to the table and began to flip though it’s pages. By chance I stumbled upon this poem. I must have read it a hundred times. I was fascinated. Each time I read it I was taken to a place I had never been, and to a time that could never be again.

By the end of the night I had found my own passion, for poetry and history.

So without further delay I thought I would share with you one of the first poems I ever read, the first poem I ever memorized, and I hope you enjoy it as much as I did all those years ago:

Half a league, half a league,
  Half a league onward,
All in the valley of Death
  Rode the six hundred.
‘Forward, the Light Brigade!
Charge for the guns’ he said:
Into the valley of Death
  Rode the six hundred.

‘Forward, the Light Brigade!’
Was there a man dismay’d?
Not tho’ the soldiers knew
  Some one had blunder’d:
Theirs not to make reply,
Theirs not to reason why,
Theirs but to do and die:
Into the valley of Death
  Rode the six hundred.

Cannon to the right of them,
Cannon to the left of them,
Cannon in front of them
  Volley’d and thunder’d;
Storm’d at with shot and shell,
Boldly they rode and well,
Into the jaws of Death,
Into the mouth of Hell
  Rode the six hundred.

Flash’d all their sabres bare,
Flash’d as they turned in air
Sabring the gunners there,
Charging an army while
  All the world wonder’d:
Plunged in the battery-smoke
Right thro’ the line they broke;
Cossack and Russian
Reel’d from the sabre-stroke
Shatter’d and sunder’d.
Then they rode back, but not
Not the six hundred.

Cannon to right of them,
Cannon to left of them,
Cannon behind them
  Volley’d and thunder’d;
Storm’d at with shot and shell,
While horse and hero fell,
They that had fought so well
Came thro’ the jaws of Death,
Back from the mouth of Hell,
All that was left of them,
  Left of six hundred.

When can their glory fade?
O the wild charge they made!
  All the world wonder’d.
Honour the charge they made!
Honour the Light Brigade,
  Noble six hundred!

—Alfred, Lord Tennyson

Click here for the Wiki article on The Charge of the Light Brigade.