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Melancholera, September 8th, 1996 :: Ben Turner's Soapbox

 

the soapbox @ benturner.com
archived soapbox: September 8th, 1996
"Melancholera" [permalink]
    keywords: poetry, love, relationships, life, college, education
    soapbox #: 49
    written: September 8th, 1996
    words: 328

"Melancholera", an Essay

Ah, college life once again. Plenty of women around. But there's one, just one, that I'm interested in. And of course, she's probably taken already. So I'm feeling a tad bit melancholic and feel it's appropriate to post this poem which I wrote last year.

 

. . .

Not Unlike Muhammad II's1

From the eternal pages of decayed books2 of history,
I have read the tales o' the mammoth3 walls of Hades,
The defiant, yet fate-slaved stones of the bold fortress Troy, and
The Great China's Wall4, spied even from our Heavenly space5.

Though none have I seen in my own short-lived stay here.
Why so? I must first fight, driving off my problems bravely.
You, Pernicious Love, Fiend and "Horse"6, lay siege on the city of
My sad heart, the unde'erved flame razing of my wretched sweet love.

Each wall built event'ally crumbles, true, except a soft one, also
Mine, physic'ly more delicate than the paper one reads. It's
The mind, affirmed and adamant7, unbending. O Thought8, spring o' war,
Hate too, you block9 blessed woes o' love from my poor heart fore'er.

. . .


1. Sultan who sieged Constantinople, the last seat of Roman empire.
2. Oxymoron with "eternal" and "decayed".
3. "Mammoth" echoes Mammon, a demon in Paradise Lost.
4. Allusions to high walls of Hell, Trojan War, and Great Wall of China.
5. Great Wall of China, only structure visible from outer space.
6. Personification of Love and reference to Love as being a "Trojan Horse".
7. "Adamant" echoes Adam in Paradise Lost.
8. Apostrophe to Thought, or the human brain.
9. "Block": "To hinder movement"; also, a block of stone in a wall.

Elegiac couplets: meter used traditionally as emphasis on mourning or sadness.

Siege and battle metaphors throughout poem.



 
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