Sestina Courage Poems | Sestina Poems About Courage

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Shadow Soldiers on Parade

In endless quest we sought seclusions peace                          	John G. Lawless
hiding in the mystery of a strength always thought weak		6/19/2014
and so denied the hero the still of death’s parade			Sestina
waved surrender’s handkerchiefs to fill his empty grave
relied upon the charity of victory’s feeble thrill
struggling to rise above fresh bloodied horror’s sound.

Relentlessly the ears decry the loneliness of empty sound
as furtive eyes no future seek in fear of war, in fear of peace,
the agony of their disgrace, the joy of living without thrill
they know they’re strong, they know they’re weak
for somehow evading battles grave
to march in fiction’s harsh parade.

Solemnly on hush of wind, wars ghosts, in shadow on parade
march to history’s retold lies, leave no footprints, make no sound
for they will not resign their fate to earthen shell of shallow grave
nor will they let it slip behind the fragile wall of unearned peace
returning to a world in which we are  perceived as weak
malign them with contrived disdain, condemn their sacrifice as thrill.

Podiums will hail the cause, cheering crowds create a thrill,
rolling drums will precede taps, politicians will parade,
orators with fiery words that make us neither strong nor weak
echoing across dead ears jaundiced by the painful sound
of promises that never are the troubadours of peace
and fall, as soldiers fall, alone upon a grave.

Newsmen mumble, double talk, of situations grave
amusement parks entice us with a death defying thrill
fire crackers, waving flags, noise to celebrate a peace
heads will bow when passing by war’s endless parade
the young will even shed a tear at taps lamenting sound
grit their teeth and know that honor’s tears don’t make us weak.

For freedom is the resting place for the bravest of the weak
who stand in freedom’s honor when the threat is grave
and rally to defend her, to keep her promise sound
not seeking to be heroes, nor the deception of war’s thrill
just honoring the memory of those still on parade
knowing there’s no solace in seclusions peace.

At heart we know that all are weak, that war is not a thrill
that those who fill the graves are shadow soldiers on parade
that the melancholy trumpet sound is the exhaled breath of peace.

Copyright © John lawless | Year Posted 2014

Details | Sestina |

To Find The Girl That I'd Love Best

To find the girl that I’d love best (A Sestina, 19 May 2014).

I thought to set upon a quest;
One that would put me to the test
So I left my cold and empty nest
And proceeded with vigor and zest
To find the girl that I’d love best.
Thus I left my castle in the west.

So proceeding from the west,
I set upon the aforementioned quest
To find the girl that I’d love best.
The trek was long, surely a true test,
That sometimes wore out my youthful zest
And made me regret my empty nest.

I did not turn back to my empty nest,
That was now far distant in the west,
Rather took heart to recover my zest
And with renewed hope continued my quest
Resolving to finally beat the test
To find the girl that I’d love best.

At a fork I chose the road that I thought best
Would lead to my fairest lady’s nest
But I was deceived by this beguiled test
And turned back around towards the west
To retrace my old footsteps of my quest
And returned to the fork with much less zest.

On the other road moving with less zest
I by chance met the girl that I’d love best.
She saw that I was on some kind of quest
And offered me sustenance within her nest
I desired to take her to my home in the west
And realized wooing her would be my final test

So preparing for this final test,
I pursued the charming girl with zest.
She consented to come with me to the west,
Therefore I won the one that I’d love best.
Thus I took her home back to my nest
And finally fulfilled my loving quest .

It never really was for me a test to tolerate the girl that I loved  best.
So I cherished her with love and zest; because she took the emptiness from my  nest.
Thus I never again set foot out from the west for another lengthy silly quest.

Copyright © Mark J. Halliday | Year Posted 2014

Details | Sestina |

cursed to exhale

If i could exhale, really exhale,
To expire the rubble of the ages, 
1000 years of dread off my belly,
and my fingertips once so dainty
then could grasp stars and not burn,
 I dig my face into the dirt and find eternity.

i gazed into the jackals eyes and he spoke to me from eternity
he said "follow closely so that i might teach you to exhale
and maybe dear in return a smile upon your face will burn"
an expression lost on my brittle jaw for ages
so i walk upon the crust of the earth now bruised and dainty
yet i feel growth between my toes and swelling in my belly

woe does bewilderment plague me here, tearing up my belly
then a soft green garden snake cradles me into eternity,
i watch her curl and dance across the soil of this dainty
room, she looks back from her slither reminding me to exhale,
have i been lost for all these ages?
or have i simply been afraid to burn?

and thus so is it my place to burn?
for i feel welcomed and smooth yet i have poison in my belly
and tomorrow i will remember the pain of the ages
may i retain the knowledge of eternity
or become bodily again when i exhale?
or have no question that my thoughts and ideas are dainty

i have visions of my presence siting crossed and dainty
breathing barley and quiet as i burn
surrounded by a castle of tones that bring me to exhale
into the mouth of god and back into my belly
i feel my self escaping and gasping for eternity
coming back down to the end of my ages

i could sit and cry for the death of the ages 
but this life i despise growing and rooting, dainty
yes, paltry no, and tattering for the rest of my eternity
yet i recall the jackal and his feet where the earth does burn
and i miss the poison in my belly
it not escapes me, but it crusades me to exhale.

before and after the ages, the world will burn and my body will lie dainty 
on the ground filling her great belly with the poison of eternity cursed to exhale.

Copyright © xtevie fernandez | Year Posted 2013

Details | Sestina |

Unsung - A Sestina


My brother, Lincoln Beachey, made my life a wonder,
Mother's eyes were full of him and loved how he was bold	
I was the shadow elder son of a family in poverty's control
and struggled to to sustain them until my blind father's death.	
In a grey world, Linc was bright colour caught on the fly
I felt drab and responsible but he dreamed of the sky.

Together we built airships and sailed  upon the sky.
people lifted up their eyes and pointed up in wonder.
Then Orville flew and out of the blue, we began to fly.
we both were taught but I flew first, and I was not so bold.
It was almost suicidal but Lincoln feared not death
but I was timid, not like him, not nearly in control.

I flew straight, flat, low and slow tight grip on control
but Lincoln from the take off; it was like he owned the sky.
He danced on the air and I worried, fearing for his death. 
Others tried to dance his dance and they died.  No wonder
My brother always dared more, did more, forever bold.
Then grief for the dead filled him and no more could he fly.

He was sure it was his fault that they had died, so he did not fly
But like me they had lacked his nerves and his iron control. 
They were others,  the sky was full of men who were bold
Linc tried very hard not to fly but he soon went back to the sky
Then people came in thousands to see his  latest wonder. 
Flying low and slow I bumbled, crashed and came near death.

They saw him loop the loop for the first time and avoid death
He flew the thunder of Niagara's mists; where none had dared to fly
Then raced a car neck and neck, It was a screaming wonder
his plane howled inches over the  drivers head, the finest of control. 
Once he climbed his plane, until fuel was gone, high into the sky.	
None had been higher and silently he glided down. That bold.

Over San Francisco bay he flew and still he was bold
Watched by thousands he seemed to tease death
then, suddenly, my ice cold brother fell from the sky
and I saw him smash into the water. No more to fly.
A wing strut had collapsed and he had no more control	
and I lost my brother and it ended an era of  wonder.

I am old now and look at the sky and I think of the unsung men who used to Fly
Those like me who were not bold  and those who were. We all meet death
but we all look at the Control of a Lincoln Beachy and  love all the  wonder.

Copyright © Paddi March | Year Posted 2014