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Rudyard Kipling, one of the greatest poets to write in English


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#1 BaalChatzaf

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Posted 28 October 2012 - 03:04 PM

Rudyard Kipling wrote a poem - Recessional- on the occasion of the Diamond Jubilee of Queen Victoria. He had a premonition there in the glitz and glamor of the celebration. He felt, in his bones, the decline and end of the British Empire, even when it appeared to be at its height.




It was these lines that got to me:


Far-called, our navies melt away;
On dune and headland sinks the fire:
Lo, all our pomp of yesterday
Is one with Nineveh and Tyre!
Judge of the Nations, spare us yet,
Lest we forget - lest we forget!



---------------------------------------------------
Somehow Kipling sensed that the game was up for Great Britain.


Is the game up for us?

Here is the entire poem:


God of our fathers, known of old,
Lord of our far-flung battle-line,
Beneath whose awful Hand we hold
Dominion over palm and pine
Lord God of Hosts be with us yet,
Lest we forget - lest we forget!

The tumult and the shouting dies;
The Captains and the Kings depart:
Still stands Thine ancient sacrifice,
An humble and a contrite heart.
Lord God of Hosts, be with us yet,
Lest we forget - lest we forget!

Far-called, our navies melt away;
On dune and headland sinks the fire:
Lo, all our pomp of yesterday
Is one with Nineveh and Tyre!
Judge of the Nations, spare us yet,
Lest we forget - lest we forget!

If, drunk with sight of power, we loose
Wild tongues that have not Thee in awe,
Such boastings as the Gentiles use,
Or lesser breeds without the Law
Lord God of Hosts, be with us yet,
Lest we forget - lest we forget!

For heathen heart that puts her trust
In reeking tube and iron shard,
All valiant dust that builds on dust,
And guarding, calls not Thee to guard,
For frantic boast and foolish word
Thy mercy on Thy People, Lord!


----------------------------------------------------




Ba'al Chatzaf
אויב מיין באָבע האט בייצים זי וואָלט זיין מיין זיידע

#2 daunce lynam

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Posted 28 October 2012 - 04:00 PM

This wonderful sombre meditation was Kipling's best poem, far better I think than the wistful Etonesque "If".

He also foreshadowed feminism with his line, "for the Colonel's lady and Judy O'Grady are sisters under their skins."

The "lesser breeds without the law" phrase has often been misunderstood. He clearly meant, "outside the law" (ie the Judaeo-Christian, English law) not without law of any kind.

#3 Stephen Boydstun

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Posted 12 January 2014 - 09:35 AM

.

Ayn Rand and If.

 

I like also The Way through the Woods.



#4 Michael E. Marotta

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Posted 12 January 2014 - 01:01 PM

I found an old copy of The King's English by Henry Fowler and Francis Fowler, 1908.  They raked Kipling over the coals for the Americanisms that he introduced. 


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#5 Francisco Ferrer

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Posted 12 January 2014 - 01:19 PM

Let's not forget that the full title of one of Kipling's best known poems is "“The White Man’s Burden: The United States and The Philippine Islands.”

 

Kipling urged the U.S. to

 

Go send your sons to exile

To serve your captives' need

To wait in heavy harness

On fluttered folk and wild—

Your new-caught, sullen peoples,

Half devil and half child

 

 

In taking up this burden, the United States military would kill several hundred thousand Filipinos who had the temerity to "assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature's God entitle them."



#6 Brant Gaede

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Posted 12 January 2014 - 10:35 PM

Let's not forget that the full title of one of Kipling's best known poems is "“The White Man’s Burden: The United States and The Philippine Islands.”

 

Kipling urged the U.S. to

 

Go send your sons to exile

To serve your captives' need

To wait in heavy harness

On fluttered folk and wild—

Your new-caught, sullen peoples,

Half devil and half child

 

 

In taking up this burden, the United States military would kill several hundred thousand Filipinos who had the temerity to "assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature's God entitle them."

 

It logically followed from The War Between the States, aka The Civil War and The War of Southern Succession. 5% of the population died of wounds and war-induced disease because Lincoln wanted to preserve the union. That was about 600,000 people. Most of the wars the United States has fought in were absolutely unnecessary and WWI had the most terrible consequences we live with today. The State of the United States grew out of the constitutional republic that got it officially going with human-rights window dressing.

 

--Brant


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#7 Selene

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Posted 13 January 2014 - 12:08 AM

Yeah, yeah...

 

At least we got the 45 automatic pistol out of the political bullshit...

 

A...


"Extremism in the defense of liberty is no vice..and moderation in the pursuit of justice is no virtue."

#8 Selene

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Posted 13 January 2014 - 12:21 AM

Let's not forget that the full title of one of Kipling's best known poems is "“The White Man’s Burden: The United States and The Philippine Islands.”

 

Kipling urged the U.S. to

 

Go send your sons to exile

To serve your captives' need

To wait in heavy harness

On fluttered folk and wild—

Your new-caught, sullen peoples,

Half devil and half child

 

 

In taking up this burden, the United States military would kill several hundred thousand Filipinos who had the temerity to "assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature's God entitle them."

 

 

745px-Filipino_casualties_on_the_first_d

 

Just a special war...

 

 

"The present war is no bloodless, fake, opera bouffé engagement. Our men have been relentless; have killed to exterminate men, women, children, prisoners and captives, active insurgents and suspected people, from lads of ten and up, an idea prevailing that the Filipino, as such, was little better than a dog, a noisome reptile in some instances, whose best disposition was the rubbish heap. Our soldiers have pumped salt water into men to "make them talk," have taken prisoner people who held up their hands and peacefully surrendered, and an hour later, without an atom of evidence to show that they were even insurrectos, stood them on a bridge and shot them down one by one, to drop into the water below and float down as an example to those who found their bullet riddled corpses. It is not civilized warfare, but we are not dealing with a civilized people. The only thing they know and fear is force, violence, and brutality, and we give it to them."

--Correspondent to the Philadelphia Ledger


There are atrocities in any war. However, in the Philippine-American War, brutality reached a level unprecedented in American history. Americans fighting in the Philippines treated their enemy with none of the civility that generally characterized wars against European opponents. They viewed the Filipinos as savages. Most of the high command had spent their careers fighting “injuns” on the American frontier, and quickly adopted even harsher methods in the islands. As one Kansas veteran claimed, "the country won't be pacified until the niggers are killed off like the Indians." “Nigger” and “gugu” were common racial slurs applied to the Filipinos. As the war intensified, killing the wounded, mutilating the dead, torture, and execution spread through the islands.


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

I want no prisoners. I wish you to kill and burn, the more you kill and burn the better it will please me...Kill everyone over the age of ten
--General Jacob Smith, Samar Campaign


"Extremism in the defense of liberty is no vice..and moderation in the pursuit of justice is no virtue."

#9 Selene

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Posted 13 January 2014 - 12:24 AM

 

The war in the Philippines claimed the lives of almost 5,000 Americans and an estimated 20,000 Filipino soldiers. On the American side, many of these deaths were due not to the Filipinos, but instead to disease. Malaria and a host of other foreign maladies plagued the previously unexposed Americans. Disease affected the Filipinos as well, but their losses came mostly from the battlefield. In past wars, one person had died for every five or six wounded; in the Philippine conflict, over fifteen Filipinos died for every one wounded. This was primarily due to the Filipino lack of weapons and poor aim. Few of the Filipinos had rifles; most were armed only with bolo knives. Rifles became even scarcer as the war dragged on, as many malfunctioned or were captured by or sold to American troops. Ammunition was equally scarce, and the Filipinos were forced to manufacture their own cartridges and powder. The makeshift gunpowder was often more of a danger to themselves, as it was unreliable and released thick black smoke that revealed their positions. Another factor in the high death toll was the “take no prisoners” attitude of the Americans, who would often bayonet to death the wounded who were left behind.


Soon we had orders to advance, and we rose up from behind our trenches and started across the creek in mud and water up to our waists. However, we did not mind it a bit, our fighting blood was up and we all wanted to kill 'niggers.' This shooting human beings is a 'hot game,' and beats rabbit hunting all to pieces.... We soon charged them again, and such a slaughter you never saw. We killed them like rabbits; hundreds, yes, thousands of them. Every one was crazy. I tell you it was awful after it was over. But it was war.... We will soon round them up and kill them all off. No more prisoners. They take none, and they torture our men, so we will kill wounded and all of them....

--A private of Company H of the First Regiment, Washington State Volunteers


In the Battle of Lonoy in March of 1901, Filipino troops were slaughtered when the Americans discovered their planned ambush and attacked them from the rear. Only seven escaped the massacre. And the brutality didn’t end even with death; both Americans and Filipinos would sometimes mutilate enemy bodies simply to demoralize the enemy.


"Extremism in the defense of liberty is no vice..and moderation in the pursuit of justice is no virtue."

#10 Selene

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Posted 13 January 2014 - 12:29 AM

 

My nation cannot remain indifferent in view of such violent and aggressive seizure of a portion of its territory by a nation which has arrogated to itself the title: champion of oppressed nations.

 

-- Gen. Emilio Aguinaldo, 1898

 

 

...the Filipino Nationalist Army suffered an estimated 16,000 military deaths. Filipino civilian deaths are estimated to have been between 250,000 and 1 million...A further 100,000 Filipino civilians perished in the Moro Rebellion. The U.S. military lost 4,325 soldiers during 1898-1902...1,500 of these were the result of actual combat, while the rest died of disease...American forces continued to suffer periodic casualties in the suppression of the Moro Rebellion in the Southern Philippines until 1913.

 


"Extremism in the defense of liberty is no vice..and moderation in the pursuit of justice is no virtue."

#11 Selene

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Posted 13 January 2014 - 12:29 AM

The Moro rebellion was Islamic in nature.


"Extremism in the defense of liberty is no vice..and moderation in the pursuit of justice is no virtue."

#12 eva matthews

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Posted 09 March 2014 - 03:31 PM

"So what do you think of Kipling?"

'I don't know, I've never kippled."

 

Kipling was a racist imperialist who justified colonialism. What more might be said of his content?

 

As for form, it's still nevertheless meningful to ask what such- and- such poet accomplished in the way of asking the Spinozan question of poetry, 'What can words do?'

 

In other words, does Kipling's use of language make us see the world any differently than before?

 

Obviously not. He's a cheep takeoff on Browning, and without his sense of humaor and irony, as well.

 

His rhyming coupets are trite, high-skool stuff, meant only to impress said high-skoolerrs to take up the cause, and join the army!

 

But of the fuzzy-wuzzies, beware--

They broke the hollow square!

 

See how easy it is--i can kipple, too!

 

EM



#13 Selene

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Posted 09 March 2014 - 03:50 PM

Eva:

 

What modern poets do you favor?

 

A...


"Extremism in the defense of liberty is no vice..and moderation in the pursuit of justice is no virtue."

#14 Brant Gaede

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Posted 09 March 2014 - 05:49 PM

"So what do you think of Kipling?"
'I don't know, I've never kippled."
 
Kipling was a racist imperialist who justified colonialism. What more might be said of his content?
 
As for form, it's still nevertheless meningful to ask what such- and- such poet accomplished in the way of asking the Spinozan question of poetry, 'What can words do?'
 
In other words, does Kipling's use of language make us see the world any differently than before?
 
Obviously not. He's a cheep takeoff on Browning, and without his sense of humaor and irony, as well.
 
His rhyming coupets are trite, high-skool stuff, meant only to impress said high-skoolerrs to take up the cause, and join the army!
 
But of the fuzzy-wuzzies, beware--
They broke the hollow square!
 
See how easy it is--i can kipple, too!
 
EM


Gee, who poured all that into you? For a 20yo you sure know a lot about a lot. Everywhere you go on OL you drop these knowledge/evaluative bombshells.

--Brant
I see craters

Rational Individualist, Rational self-interest, Individual Rights--limited government libertarian heavily influenced by Objectivism


#15 eva matthews

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Posted 09 March 2014 - 07:39 PM

 

"So what do you think of Kipling?"
'I don't know, I've never kippled."
 
Kipling was a racist imperialist who justified colonialism. What more might be said of his content?
 
As for form, it's still nevertheless meningful to ask what such- and- such poet accomplished in the way of asking the Spinozan question of poetry, 'What can words do?'
 
In other words, does Kipling's use of language make us see the world any differently than before?
 
Obviously not. He's a cheep takeoff on Browning, and without his sense of humaor and irony, as well.
 
His rhyming coupets are trite, high-skool stuff, meant only to impress said high-skoolerrs to take up the cause, and join the army!
 
But of the fuzzy-wuzzies, beware--
They broke the hollow square!
 
See how easy it is--i can kipple, too!
 
EM


Gee, who poured all that into you? For a 20yo you sure know a lot about a lot. Everywhere you go on OL you drop these knowledge/evaluative bombshells.

--Brant
I see craters

 

Who didn't pour Kipling into you at 15?

EM



#16 Selene

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Posted 09 March 2014 - 07:50 PM

 

Who didn't pour Kipling into you at 15?

EM

 

 

Ah...the Putin manuever.  Never answer, ask another question...some Greeks had a name for it.

 

Alinsky was smart enough to understand the foundational memes that underlay the American mindset. 

 

Sadly, he also had a great attack plan that is working as we sit here today.

 

A...


"Extremism in the defense of liberty is no vice..and moderation in the pursuit of justice is no virtue."

#17 BaalChatzaf

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Posted 11 March 2014 - 08:19 AM

 

 

Who didn't pour Kipling into you at 15?

EM

 

 

Ah...the Putin manuever.  Never answer, ask another question...some Greeks had a name for it.

 

Alinsky was smart enough to understand the foundational memes that underlay the American mindset. 

 

Sadly, he also had a great attack plan that is working as we sit here today.

 

A...

 

Saul Alinsky was one of Lord Obama's spiritual and intellectual fathers.  Obama is the Devil Spawn of Saul Alinsky and (Old) Mayor Daley of Chicago.  A vicious combination.  Evil prevailed and begat Barak Obama.

 

Ba'al Chatzaf 


אויב מיין באָבע האט בייצים זי וואָלט זיין מיין זיידע

#18 eva matthews

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Posted 12 March 2014 - 11:37 AM

 

 

Who didn't pour Kipling into you at 15?

EM

 

 

Ah...the Putin manuever.  Never answer, ask another question...some Greeks had a name for it.

 

Alinsky was smart enough to understand the foundational memes that underlay the American mindset. 

 

Sadly, he also had a great attack plan that is working as we sit here today.

 

A...

 

Kindly ask me a question & i'll be happy to try to answer it.

 

What dies Alinsky have to do with Kipling?



#19 Selene

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Posted 12 March 2014 - 11:59 AM

 

Kindly ask me a question & i'll be happy to try to answer it.



 

 

What dies Alinsky have to do with Kipling?

 

 

Assuming your logic that Kipling was a stalking horse for racist imperialism, Alinsky was a stalking horse for marxist racist imperialism.

 

As to asking you a question, I did in post # 13 supra...

 

A...


"Extremism in the defense of liberty is no vice..and moderation in the pursuit of justice is no virtue."

#20 eva matthews

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Posted 12 March 2014 - 01:26 PM

 

 

Kindly ask me a question & i'll be happy to try to answer it.



 

 

What dies Alinsky have to do with Kipling?

 

 

Assuming your logic that Kipling was a stalking horse for racist imperialism, Alinsky was a stalking horse for marxist racist imperialism.

 

As to asking you a question, I did in post # 13 supra...

 

A...

 

Sorry, i missed that. 'Glad to answer. 

 

For me, again, I take the Spinoza line that something is what it does. Hence, poetry answers the question, 'what can language do?'

 

Let's begin with Browning, with his sense of irony. conversation, and play. What's important here is that how he expanded the meter; by doing this, he was able to enjoin seemingly contradictory ideas:

 

"...The soul, doubtless, is immortal, whre a sould can be discerned'.

 

Then, Yeats appears as the monster of lyricism and craft, moving effortlessly between the feeling self and abstract judgment:

 

'I lay it out in verse:

Mcdowell, McBride, Connoly and Pearse.

Not and in a time to be whenever green is worn

The times are changed, utterly--

A terrible beauty is born.

 

Eliot, of course, both early and late (Prufrock and Little Gidding)

Two arguments here: One must see the aridity of the Wasteland to obtain the spiritual. The not ceasing from exploration concerns the exploration of language, not 'life'.

 

 

Auden:

"As the poet whispers, startled among the pines..."

 

Then the  greatness of Frost, & Stevens will take us to Jorie Graham and 'Dream of the unified field', an inquiry that every parent faces:

how to impart a unified vision of the world onto a child that will make sense?

 

Finally, Sissy (Susan Matthews): 

 

"Where the brine greets the yellowgreen grass

There, I reposed upon the tombstone slab

And gazed out into the nickel shroud.

Monet-etched in charcoal posed the span.

The brickish fountain spoke all a-gurgle--

Yet lacking child on wall on wall and fount today 

Where once, some time ago, a decade lost, 

We'd laugh and splash and play

To chase down rows of palm

To sing our waterfall song

Beneath the tangerine dreams of the dying day."

 

Charleston City Park, 2011, at 15

 

EM






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