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Heroes

by  James Graham

Posted: Saturday, July 27, 2019
Word Count: 211
Summary: Whether you liked them or not, youíve had Hypatia of Alexandria and the Peasantsí Revolt. Now another poem on a historical theme. I hope itís at least clear. Itís a long way from perfect, though, and I welcome your criticisms and suggestions. James.




Heroes
 
Heroes are not men
with inverted triangles for upper bodies,
muscles like sea-serpents writhing beneath the miniscus of the skin,
a pair of fancy briefs, and a cape.
 
Nor are they those who walk to the South Pole,
or carry out rescues in rough seas.
Though they are far superior.
 
The greatest and best are like the men who read
of the murderous fascists in Spain, and did not shrug. Such as
a young man from Coventry, or Paisley, a miner or bricklayer,
who took the train to London, paying his way; to Newhaven, Dieppe,
and on the ‘red bus’ to the Pyrenees. At last, with passing thoughts
of turning back, on foot across the reproachful mountains
 
to the rallying place. Stirred by speeches, they had
no weapons. Then guns that did not work. Then finally
Soviet arms, benevolently furnished by the murderous
Joseph Stalin. Together they went up
to face the mercenaries. In the world, at all times,
 
There are many more of these best heroes.