Tag Archives: poems

In Passion Hot

In passion hot
Children are begot
And time forgot.
Yet the clock’s whir
Is still there
Heed it or not.

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Should Poets Use Swear Words In Their Poetry?

In June 2017, I wrote a post entitled “Its My Blog and I’ll Swear If I Like”, https://newauthoronline.com/2017/06/27/its-my-blog-and-ill-swear-if-i-like/. In that article I argued that everyone has a right to run their blogs as they wish, including utilising swear words in posts. I also stated that swearing has a place in literature, for instance a gangster novel in which none of the characters swear would be wholly unbelievable.

I am, as pointed out in the above piece, no plaster saint myself and will on occasions swear in my personal life. However this is a rarity and when I swear it is, almost always under my breath and its not something of which I am proud.

I was reminded of my 2017 post by this article on the blog of the poet Giles L. Turnbull, http://gilesturnbullpoet.com/2018/04/01/i-swear-that-be-poetry/, in which he discusses the use of swearing in poetry. The article makes for interesting reading but utilises several four letter words, consequently anyone who would find this offensive may wish to avoid clicking on the above link.

As Giles points out, Shakespeare and Larkin (amongst others) employ swear words, for example Larkin’s “This Be The Verse” is famous (infamous)? For beginning with “They f . . k you up your mum and dad, they may not mean to, but they do”, and (in the case of Philip Larkin) the use of the “f” word is wholly justified (there would not be a meaningful poem where he to have written “they mess you up your mum and dad”. However I remain of the view that the sprinkling of poetry (or any other writing) with expletives for no reason other than shock value serves no useful purpose and I personally find such utilisation offensive.

Kevin

Sun

Children play
On another hot day,
Their faces
Carrying traces
Of yet another icecream.

As girls pass by
Displaying sunkissed thigh
And young men dream
But not of icecream
I think on
The tinder dry
Heather
And wonder whether
We are too far gone

Taps

Looking back
I recall
The Union Jack
And Taps
At nightfall.

Sometimes I desire
The certainty of the camp fire,
That ancient union
Felt in the communion
Of song.

It has long since gone
But memories live on,
Tinged with nostalgia perhaps
For Taps
And the flag that did unite
Both black and white
In the camp fire’s simple light.