Sunday, 15 June 2014

Poetry's Tale

"The poets have taught us that to mortals endowed with their own delicacy of emotional structure, parting can become an agony of a death, but war, with its rude barbarian violence, had made even of us ordinary creatures, a regiment of sufferers.  Common clay as we were, and far enough removed as we thought ourselves from the spun glass of the poet's imagining, we found ourselves betrayed into the very emotions they had sung.  That the prose of war should prove the truth of poetry's tale of man's feeling - that it should now be easy to believe that some of those magic lines were indeed a reflection of the real thoughts of real men and women - that was an astonishing discovery.  I had read a quantity of poetry, and had even tried to write it, but all with a sense of projecting my personality into an adjacent field of life.  Here and now I was treading, at some remove, the very paths the poets had walked before me."

Llewelyn Wyn Griffith
Up to Mametz (1931)

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