poet Paul Hansford

Paul Hansford

Not Ozymandias

Walking along the line 'twixt sea and land
I saw a bottle, half hidden by a stone
and buried to the neck in the wet sand.
I picked it up, then, with a puzzled frown,
unstoppered it and, as by mute command
deciphering the note inside, I read:
“The one who finds this will receive all things
his heart desires, his appetites be fed.”

But is this promise what it may appear?
I asked myself. For commoners and kings
alike may find all hope turn to despair;
they all will die; their bodies will decay.
The promise, then, was meaningless and bare.
Grasping the bottle, I hurled it far away.
-

Note: the last words of each line are the last words of the lines of Shelley's Ozymandias, with which I would not venture to compare it.

For other versions of this exercise by other members, see -
www.poemhunter.com/poem/percy-s-words-at-war /
www.poemhunter.com/poem/each-gleaming-thread /
www.poemhunter.com/poem/challenge-12/
If anyone else would like to try, please feel free, but I'd be glad if you'd let me know.

Poem Submitted: Tuesday, October 27, 2009
Poem Edited: Tuesday, December 8, 2009

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Comments about Not Ozymandias by Paul Hansford

  • Tom BalchTom Balch (10/27/2009 2:28:00 PM)

    I think Percy would be pleased Paul, love the subject and the way you build to the ending, has to be a ten, regards Tom 10/10

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  • Susan JarvisSusan Jarvis (10/27/2009 1:07:00 PM)

    Firstly, to use the end words of a famous poem to create a new one is a fantastic idea. Secondly, this poem has echoes of Shelley throughout, which seem to reflect his thoughts on tyranny: “The one who finds this will receive all things/ his heart desires, his appetites be fed.” smacks of power and greed, and I love the twist which shows this message for what it is - 'all that glisters...' And the word 'twixt' is one of my favourites; it reminds me of all those wonderful Romantics. My only criticism is the title - it should be: Quasimandias! S ;)

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  • Adeline FosterAdeline Foster (10/27/2009 11:48:00 AM)

    Paul:
    Compare it you may! What an excellent job you have done since you set yourself a task with readymade end words. And the sense of the composition was not lost, even if there are some people who have not heard of Shelley. Of course the title, Ozymandias, caught my attention. Fine job.
    Adeline

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  • Sathyanarayana M V SSathyanarayana M V S (10/27/2009 11:24:00 AM)

    ear Paul,
    The inferences you made in second stanza don't seem to fit well with the bottle with a message....the connection between first and second stanzas looks very weak.......why not you try open the bottle and see what will happen? You better go and search for the bottle, where you threw it.......here you can lose nothing by taking a chance........Whay do you say my friend?

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