Oxbridge poems of wars invoke
the heroism of the average bloke,
in terms of classic tales of old
of muscled men fighting nude and gold.
These liberal times lend so much scope
for simpler meanings; the straighter dope.
As when in Dispatches Herr recalled
A young Marine in confusion scrawled:
"I think I'm falling in love with Jake!"
Laid bare, the meaning of allusions glossed ,
the rawness of emotions crossed,
how violence in it's turn demands,
the softness of a lovers arms.
Response to war poems from the Penguin book of Contemporary Verse (1918-1960)