Wednesday, January 05, 2011

Looking for Refuge in Poetry - "In Memoriam" by Tennyson

In grim times, there is always solace to be found in good poetry. Whatever the tribulations of the present it is always wise to regain a modicum of optimism without which life can become quite unbearable. Lord Alfred Tennyson's new year excerpt from his great poem "In Memoriam" is particularly apposite for the occasion even though I am a few days delayed in ringing it in. Perhaps this poem can usher in the new year afresh.

"In Memoriam" [Ring out, wild bells] -
 Lord Alfred Tennyson

Ring out, wild bells, to the wild sky,
The flying cloud, the frosty light:
The year is dying in the night;
Ring out, wild bells, and let him die.

Ring out the old, ring in the new,
Ring, happy bells, across the snow:
The year is going, let him go;
Ring out the false, ring in the true.

Ring out the grief that saps the mind
For those that here we see no more;
Ring out the feud of rich and poor,
Ring in redress to all mankind.

Ring out a slowly dying cause,
And ancient forms of party strife;
Ring in the nobler modes of life,
With sweeter manners, purer laws.

Ring out the want, the care, the sin,
The faithless coldness of the times;
Ring out, ring out my mournful rhymes
But ring the fuller minstrel in.

Ring out false pride in place and blood,
The civic slander and the spite;
Ring in the love of truth and right,
Ring in the common love of good.

Ring out old shapes of foul disease;
Ring out the narrowing lust of gold;
Ring out the thousand wars of old,
Ring in the thousand years of peace.

Ring in the valiant man and free,
The larger heart, the kindlier hand;
Ring out the darkness of the land,
Ring in the Christ that is to be.


Anonymous said...

I have spent much time on your blog yesterday and today and learnt a lot. Please, keep on writing and mailing posts on it.
Thank you.

Fawad Zakariya said...

Thanks Anonymous!!