Michael Walker

Gold Star - 57,060 Points (cv48488)

Si Nous Devons Mourir.(Translation) . - Poem by Michael Walker

Si nous devons mourir, qu'il ne soit comme des cochons
Chasses et enclos dans un lieu inglorieux,
Tandis qu' autour de nous aboient les chiens
Fous et affames, se moquant de notre lot maudit.
Si nous devons mourir, Oh mourrons d'une facon noble,
de sorte que notre sang precieux ne soit verse
En vain; alors meme tous les monstres que nous defions
Devront nous faire honneur quoique morts!
Oh mes compatriotes! nous devons faire face a l'ennemi commun!
Bien que nous soyons surpasses en nombre soyons courageux,
Et pour leur mille coups faisons un coup fatal!
Quoi! bien que devant nous s'etende la tombe ouverte?
Comme des hommes nous ferons face a la bande meurtriere et lache,
Presses au mur, mourant, mais resistant!

- 'If We Must Die'. Claude McKay.(1889-1948) .

Topic(s) of this poem: death

Form: Sonnet


Poet's Notes about The Poem

For the original English version, see Poem Hunter, Claude McKay 29/80.
The sonnet is about being brave against all the odds even in the face of death. The British used this poem as a morale-booster in World War II, their troops fighting Nazi Germany. 'Pressed to the wall, dying, but fighting back! '.
I read the poem as a call to fight back against any injustice like slavery and segregation, Jim Crow law in the Deep South. I read it as a call to any courageous individual to fight back against the system and never give up.
McKay was a formalist and the English sonnet rhymes: aaaa/ cdcd/ efef/gg. Unusual.

Comments about Si Nous Devons Mourir.(Translation) . by Michael Walker

  • Ousmane lome (3/11/2019 11:06:00 AM)

    Fière du peau noire ❤ (Report)Reply

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Rudyard Kipling

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Poem Submitted: Tuesday, June 6, 2017

Poem Edited: Sunday, December 9, 2018


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