Guard Of Honour (Rondeau Redoublé) Poem by Paul Hansford

Guard Of Honour (Rondeau Redoublé)

Rating: 3.1


(An RAF officer helps to carry the coffin of Diana, Princess of Wales, to the plane for return to England.)

The burden I bear is more heavy than lead.
The physical weight is a thing that I share,
but the loss that I feel will not leave my head.
Why did you have to die? Why is death so unfair?

I am close to you now. Yes, touching my hair
the flag with its lions of gold and of red
that wraps round your coffin. I know you are there.
The burden I bear is more heavy than lead.

My comrades move with me in slow, solemn tread.
Our eyes are all fixed in an unseeing stare.
Our shoulders support you in your oaken bed.
The physical weight is a thing that I share.

As I feel the world watching I try not to care.
My deepest emotions are best left unsaid.
Let others show grief like a garment they wear,
but the loss that I feel will not leave my head.

The flowers they leave like a carpet are spread,
In the books of remembrance they have written, 'Somewhere
a star is extinguished because you are dead.
Why did you have to die? Why is death so unfair? '

The tears that we weep will soon grow more rare,
the rawness of grief turn to memory instead.
But deep in our hearts you will always be there,
and I ask, will I ever be able to shed
the burden I bear?

COMMENTS OF THE POEM
Cathy King 23 May 2008

Nicely done- the meter and rhyme are nice and tight, and appropriate for the dignity of the subject-as is the form. There is just enough syncopation to drive home the grief of the narrator, and his humanity. This is not an easy form to master, and you've done very well with it. Good job.

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Tom Sha 06 January 2010

Happy new year! Our class is using your poem in class. Also, we would like to use it for our speech choir. Would you care to add more background on this poem or how should we interpret this? Thank you very much.

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Matt Mooney 24 July 2009

Tactile and emotionally charged.You have brought us there.

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~ Jon London ~ 27 June 2009

A master of your craft Paul....the composition of this wonderful piece is outstanding...you truly are an amazing creator of fine poetry my friend....keep the coming

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Rob Bishop 14 May 2009

Agreed... A very nice read... Top marks sir

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Susan Jarvis 23 May 2008

Paul - this poem is truly a work of art. Again, such a disciplined and complex form fades into the background as the theme of the poem shines through. A perfect example of history meets modernity - seemingly effortlessly. I'm in awe - S :)

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