Guest poem submitted by Frank O'Shea, an excerpt from:
(Poem #1749) The Dynasts
Yea, the coneys are scared by the thud of hoofs, And their white scuts flash at their vanishing heels, And swallows abandon the hamlet-roofs. The mole's tunnelled chambers are crushed by wheels, The lark's eggs scattered, their owners fled; And the hedgehog's household the sapper unseals. The snail draws in at the terrible tread, But in vain; he is crushed by the felloe-rim The worm asks what can be overhead, And wriggles deep from a scene so grim, And guesses him safe; for he does not know What a foul red flood will be soaking him! Beaten about by the heel and toe Are butterflies, sick of the day's long rheum, To die of a worse than the weather-foe. Trodden and bruised to a miry tomb Are ears that have greened but will never be gold, And flowers in the bud that will never bloom.
Friday's poem ["The Grass", by Carl Sandburg, Poem #1748 -- ed.] reminded me of some lines from Thomas Hardy's long verse drama "The Dynasts." As with Sandburg, he is concerned with the effects of the forthcoming Battle of Waterloo on the flora and fauna. It would be nice if I could boast how clever I am to be reading such ancient and esoteric verse. The truth is that it is one of the Hardy poems used by Alan Bennett in his wonderful CD "Poetry in Motion" (www.bbcshop.com). The full text of the Hardy document can be found at http://www.gutenberg.org/dirs/etext03/dynst10.txt You have sufficient Hardy poems on your site not to need biography. But least I looked up the meaning of some of the unusual words: coney (or cony): a rabbit scut: tail felloe: the outer part of a wheel to which spokes are attached. FOS.