“For The Many” Poem by Ron Olsen

For the many poem
On the other side of the tracks
Old Glory flew
Filled full by the warm California wind
As I had never seen her before
Not for many years, anyway
Not like that
Defiant and strong
As I stood
Waiting for the Surfliner to arrive

And my heart swelled
With both pride and fear

Pride for those who shed their blood
To defend freedom
A way of life
That now stands threatened
By those who put petty self-interest
Greed driven lust for money
Ahead of country

Those who would tear down
What so many worked for
Died for
Argued for
And cried for
For the many
And not the few

It rushed through my head
As I saw our flag
Strong in the wind
As I waited for the train

A reminder of who we are
And what we stand to lose
If some of us are forced to live on one side of the tracks
While the rest are on the other
With no law or common good
To balance our wants and needs
Providing a bridge
To cross over

Only the lust for money
A rigged system
And the power of greed

Simple thoughts
Far too simple, perhaps
For the many
And not the few

 

©2015 Ron Olsen – all rights reserved

Posted in art music poetry, Poetry Posts Tagged with: ,

Flag Paintings by Jasper Johns

Flag 1954-55 by Jasper Johns

Flag 1954-55 by Jasper Johns

Three Flags by Jasper Johns

Three Flags by Jasper Johns

http://www.jasper-johns.org/three-flags.jsp

White Flag by Jasper Johns

White Flag by Jasper Johns

Posted in art music poetry

The Star Spangled Banner By Francis Scott Key 1814

flag

Oh, say can you see by the dawn’s early light
What so proudly we hailed at the twilight’s last gleaming?
Whose broad stripes and bright stars thru the perilous fight,
O’er the ramparts we watched were so gallantly streaming?
And the rocket’s red glare, the bombs bursting in air,
Gave proof through the night that our flag was still there.
Oh, say does that star-spangled banner yet wave
O’er the land of the free and the home of the brave?

On the shore, dimly seen through the mists of the deep,
Where the foe’s haughty host in dread silence reposes,
What is that which the breeze, o’er the towering steep,
As it fitfully blows, half conceals, half discloses?
Now it catches the gleam of the morning’s first beam,
In full glory reflected now shines in the stream:
‘Tis the star-spangled banner! Oh long may it wave
O’er the land of the free and the home of the brave!

And where is that band who so vauntingly swore
That the havoc of war and the battle’s confusion,
A home and a country should leave us no more!
Their blood has washed out their foul footsteps’ pollution.
No refuge could save the hireling and slave
From the terror of flight, or the gloom of the grave:
And the star-spangled banner in triumph doth wave
O’er the land of the free and the home of the brave!

Oh! thus be it ever, when freemen shall stand
Between their loved home and the war’s desolation!
Blest with victory and peace, may the heav’n rescued land
Praise the Power that hath made and preserved us a nation.
Then conquer we must, when our cause it is just,
And this be our motto: “In God is our trust.”
And the star-spangled banner in triumph shall wave
O’er the land of the free and the home of the brave!

Posted in art music poetry

Poems of Pablo Neruda

Pablo_Neruda_Ricardo_Reyes

Pablo_Neruda
 
 
I am not an expert on the works of the late Chilean poet Pablo Neruda. He is regarded by some as one of the greatest Latin American Romantic poets of the 20th Century. An insightful commentary can be found in Forest Gander, whose critically acclaimed translations of the Chilean Nobel Laureate appear in The Essential Neruda. Selected Poems. 2004.
 
My own view is that a great deal of myth mongering surrounding his name due to his political beliefs and sudden death just after the Pinochet coup, may contribute considerably to his present fame.
 
Certain writings from the late Julieta Gomez Paz, an emiminent Argentinean eassayist, feminist critic and poet in her own right, argue that in much of Neruda’s love poems, the female role is depicted more as an object than a personality. In other words an archaic machisimo attitude is very much present in his works. An opinion that i am not altogether unsympathetic towards.
(Robin Ouzman Hislop)
 
 


 
 
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Posted in Famous Poets, Poetry videos, Translation. Tagged with: , , , ,