W.H. Auden(1907-1973)Auden was born in York, England in 1907. While attending Oxford he developed a close friendship with two writers, Stephen Spender and Christopher Isherwood. In 1928, a privately published collection of his poetry was printed, but it wasn’t until 1930 that another collection, titled under the same name, Poems, was issued. It was this book that brought attention … Continued
W.H. Auden(1907-1973)Auden was born in York, England in 1907. While attending Oxford he developed a close friendship with two writers, Stephen Spender and Christopher Isherwood. In 1928, a privately published collection of his poetry was printed, but it wasn’t until 1930 that another collection, titled under the same name, Poems, was issued. It was this book that brought attention to his work. Auden served in the Spanish Civil War, moved to the United States in 1939, and became an American citizen. In addition to being a poet, he was a playwright, librettist, editor and essayist. Many critics consider Auden to be the greatest poet of the twentieth century. He served as the chancellor of the Academy of American Poets from 1954 to 1973.
In Time of War
And the age ended, and the last deliverer died.
In bed, grown idle and unhappy; they were safe:
the sudden shadow of the giant’s enormous calf
would fall no more at dusk across the lawn outside.
They slept in peace: in marshes here and there no doubt
a sterile dragon lingered to a natural death,
but in a year the spoor had vanished from the heath;
the kobold’s knocking in the mountain petered out.
Only the sculptors and the poets were half sad,
and the pert retinue from the magician’s house
grumbled and went elsewhere. The vanished powers were glad.
To be invisible and free: without remorse
struck down the sons who strayed their course,
and ravished the daughters, and drove the fathers mad.
Stop all the clocks, cut off the telephone, prevent the dog from barking with a juicy bone, silence the pianos and with muffled drum bring out the coffin, let the mourners come.
Let airplanes circle moaning overhead scribbling on the sky the message He is Dead. put crepe bows round the white necks of the public doves, let the traffic policemen wear black cotton gloves.
He was my North, my South, my East and West, my working week and my Sunday rest, my noon, my midnight, my talk, my song; I thought that love would last forever: I was wrong.
The stars are not wanted now; put out every one, pack up the moon and dismantle the sun, pour away the ocean and sweep up the woods; for nothing now can ever come to any good.
The Voices Education Project offers tools, philosophies, and learning methods that will help young people understand the roots of conflict and the trauma of war, confront the pain and fear at the heart of conflict, and help to build healthy human communities in the wake of war. We use the arts and education to transform the consciousness of young people, give teachers and students a way to explore the most important and terrifying issues of our day, and create a dialogue in which all voices can be heard, and all points of view included, without engendering fear, hatred, or anger.