Rupert John Cornford

England - literary period: Modern
Rupert John Cornford
England - literary period: Modern
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Full Moon At Tierz: Before The Storming Of Huesca

Rating: 2.8

The past, a glacier, gripped the mountain wall,
And time was inches, dark was all.
But here it scales the end of the range,
The dialectic's point of change,
Crashes in light and minutes to its fall.

Time present is a cataract whose force
Breaks down the banks even at its source
And history forming in our hands
Not plasticine but roaring sands,

Yet we must swing it to its final course.
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Susanna Jane Bernal 28 October 2015

Why not print the whole poem? This is an excerpt, the first of four sections written by John Cornford when he was on sentry duty just outside Tierz in the Spanish Civil War. The whole poem can be seen in Jim Jump (ed) Poems from Spain. Lawrence & Wishart,2006; Andy Croft (ed) Red Sky at Night, Five Leaves Publications,2003; Jonathan Galassi (ed) John Cornford Collected Works, Carcanet 1976 (soon to be reissued): Alan Bold (ed) , Penguin Book of Socialist Verse, Penguin 1970. It can also be read on John Cornford's FaceBook page. I look forward to reading the whole, very interesting poem here too. All the best, Jane Bernal

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