Exodos, Prologos

to the Class of 2018

In times uncertain, ask your truest friends
For counsel, and take all they say to heart—
But know that we are bound for different ends,
And none but you can learn and play your part.
Some friend may say, “To thine own self be true,”
But “thine own self” is not a thing of stone.
And who can say what time will do to you?
Reflect, and you will see how you have grown
And changed, from year to year and day to day,
In ways, perhaps, that only you can see;
We’ve gathered here to send you on your way,
And only you can say what that will be.
Be hungry for whatever lies in store,
And make it greater than what came before.


Apology to an Old Friend

I swore I’d keep in touch with you—
I crossed my heart and hoped to die.
I meant it, so it was no lie,
But as you know, it wasn’t true.


Benjamin Daniel Lukey was born in 1986.  He has lived all over the Eastern United States and currently resides near Charlotte, North Carolina.  He teaches high school English classes whenever he is not fishing or writing poetry.  His work has previously appeared in Edify Fiction and The Mystic Blue Review.

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The Society of Classical Poets does not endorse any views expressed in individual poems or commentary.

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11 Responses

  1. Connor Rosemond

    “Exodos, Prologos” is an excellent read, but it was even better to hear in person. Great work, Mr. Lukey!

  2. Amy Foreman

    I enjoyed reading both of these, Mr. Lukey. Thanks for sharing them with us!

  3. C.B. Anderson


    Petronius had no better avuncular counsel for Laertes. The poem was formally precise throughout, without demerits. You’ve mastered the form and you should now feel free to introduce substitutions and variations to your metrical baseline.

    • Wilude Scabere

      Do you mean Petronius, that is, Gaius Petronius Arbiter, who Tacitus called an “accomplished voluptuary” and “elegantiae arbiter” in the court of Nero, or the character Polonius, Laertes’ father and counselor to King Claudius in Hamlet?

  4. Richie Mrugalski

    Mr. Lukey, you make me so happy your so inspirational. I look up to as a role model. Thank you for everything and your amazing poems.
    – Richie


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