General Discussion
 Topics of or related to poetry. 

eMule -> The Poetry Archive -> Forums -> General Discussion


Goto Thread: PreviousNext
Goto: Forum ListMessage ListNew TopicSearchLog In
Christmas Hope
Posted by: joseph torelli (---.dyn.optonline.net)
Date: December 27, 2003 10:29AM

I had wanted to post this earlier as another reminder during the holiday season that we should never lose hope. Since my days in the military years ago, I've always been struck by the incongruity of hearing the Christmas message while war is raging about. This season is no different. However, I always take heart when I read this Longfellow poem, especially the third and fourth lines of the concluding verse, because I truly believe "the Wrong shall fail, the Right prevail."

Happy Holidays!

joet
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Christmas Bells
By Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

I heard the bells on Christmas Day
Their old, familiar carols play,
And wild and sweet
The words repeat
Of peace on earth, good-will to men!

And thought how, as the day had come,
The belfries of all Christendom
Had rolled along
The unbroken song
Of peace on earth, good-will to men!

Till, ringing, singing on its way
The world revolved from night to day,
A voice, a chime,
A chant sublime
Of peace on earth, good-will to men!

Then from each black, accursed mouth
The cannon thundered in the South,
And with the sound
The Carols drowned
Of peace on earth, good-will to men!

And in despair I bowed my head;
‘There is no peace on earth,’ I said;
‘For hate is strong,
And mocks the song
Of peace on earth, good-will to men!’

Then pealed the bells more loud and deep:
‘God is not dead; nor doth he sleep!
The Wrong shall fail,
The Right prevail,
With peace on earth, good-will to men!’


Re: Christmas Hope
Posted by: Marian-NYC (---.nyc1.dsl.speakeasy.net)
Date: December 29, 2003 02:38PM

RE: "the incongruity of hearing the Christmas message while war is raging about"


1. When better?

2. Things were NOT peaceful when Jesus was born!

3. In one of Frederic Raphael's films (can't remember which) someone criticizes a minister for delivering a blistering sermon about the shortage of low-cost housing on Christmas Eve. He replied, "I thought that's what the Nativity story was all about."


But you raise the question (the "incongruity" question) from a new angle. The next time I'm asked to help with a Christma pageant, I'll suggest that the Holy Family recieve a visit from three soldiers on leave, in addition to the shepherds and the wise men.


Re: Christmas Hope
Posted by: joseph torelli (---.dyn.optonline.net)
Date: December 29, 2003 05:45PM

Marian-NYC:

When I mentioned incongruity, I was referring more to the contrast or dissimilartiy between war and the Christmas bells, rather than implying that it is, somehow, inappropriate to mention them together. It is the contrasting juxtaposition of the two that always strikes me when I read this poem.

Your points are well-made though. With the Roman occupation, the Holy Land certainly was a violent and dangerous place 2,000 years ago, though probably not as violent and dangerous as it is today.

joet


Re: Christmas Hope
Posted by: Linda (---.cache.pol.co.uk)
Date: December 29, 2003 06:23PM

I doubt the mothers of the holy innocents would agree with that.


Re: Christmas Hope
Posted by: Marian-NYC (---.nyc1.dsl.speakeasy.net)
Date: December 30, 2003 12:21PM

Surely some revelation is at hand?
Surely the Second Coming is at hand?

(Yeats)


Re: Christmas Hope
Posted by: Hugh Clary (---.denver-02rh15-16rt.co.dial-access.att.net)
Date: December 31, 2003 12:08PM


Which reminds me that Dorothy Parker named her parrot Onan, because he spilled his seed on the ground.




Sorry, only registered users may post in this forum.
This poetry forum at emule.com powered by Phorum.