Those Days and These

“‘. . . Macbeth does murther sleep.’” —William Shakespeare

If only such a villain were
__Alone in this regard,
The course of human history
__Would prove to be less hard.

Mythology and scripture are
__Replete with deadly deeds
Conducted by those seeking to
__Meet wants as well as needs.

No time nor place nor culture has
__Been spared the ugly strife
In which some individual
__Cuts short another’s life.

The crime, however plotted, tends
__To take a double toll:
It kills the victim’s body and
__The perpetrator’s soul.



The quick brown fox jumps over the lazy dog. —common pangram (using every letter in the alphabet)

What if the lazy dog jumped up and chased
the quick brown fox out of the yard? Type that
for extra credit if you dare! Hands placed
and fingers poised? Go! . . . Hmm, not quite down pat.
Good effort, but you might do better if
you practiced more. I know, I know, today
thumbs are the means to text a verbal riff;
voice recognition software is the way
to turn ideas into documents.
The keyboard, though, is not yet obsolete;
technology, like teaching, re-invents
itself, and your coursework is incomplete.
Regardless of what happens out of class,
you must type well enough in here to pass.


Jane Blanchard lives and writes in Georgia.  One of her sonnets recently won the inaugural Letheon Poetry Prize.  She has two collectionsUnloosed and Tides & Currentsboth with Kelsay Books.

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6 Responses

  1. James A. Tweedie

    Those Days and These is masterfully done; succinct and pointed as a dagger. There is profound truth in your words and, unfortunately, the truth is sometimes both hard to hear and hard to bear. Thank you.

  2. Cause Bewilder

    Ms. Blanchard, in both poems, shows a sure poetic touch: some interesting turns of phrase in the balladic “Those Days and These,” and excellent diction in “Drill,” with the break into the sestet at line nine of the English sonnet. The second-person point-of-view reminds me of a poem I did on the “famed” pangrammic sentence; but your poem expands into the New Millennium with a finer, thematic sweep. It is the poise that I admire; it takes a lot of work to achieve that.


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