Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Lest we forget

Far-called, our navies melt away;
On dune and headland sinks the fire:
Lo, all our pomp of yesterday
Is one with Nineveh and Tyre!
Judge of the Nations, spare us yet,
Lest we forget - lest we forget!

- Rudyard Kipling, Recessional, 1897.

Lest we forget the ephemerality of empire and the dangerous temptation to national self-aggrandisement. Lest we forget the divine judgement upon human folly and pomp.

And lest we forget the hope of mercy, despite our manifold failures. Spare us yet.


byron smith said...

Paul Tyson: Lest we remember.

byron smith said...

SMH: Shifting meaning of ANZAC Day: "it's about the founding of our Australian values and our Aussie spirit."

By turning ANZAC Day into a celebration of the nation, its role as commemoration of the horrors of war is eclipsed (lest we forget indeed). If we are to remember war and the terrible costs borne by combatants and society (and failing to do so would probably be a dangerous omission), let us not soften its harsh brutal reality with nationalist warm fuzzies.