Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Irony in Frost's poems--inspired by anonymous comment on last post

I appreciated Anonymous's comment on my last post about the irony of Frost's poem, "The Road Not Taken." I LOVE Frost's poems and his tone. In fact, one of his poems, "Mending Wall," inspired one of my own ironic poems, a sonnet called "Neighborly Love," which has been published a few times, and will also appear in my new YA novel, now in submission. Thank you, Robert Frost, my muse!

Irony is one of the most effective tools for social commentary, and why is that? Emily Dickinson could answer that: "Too bright for our infirm delight, the Truth's superb surprise." So could Jack Nicholson's character in "A Few Good Men": "You can't handle the Truth!" Comedians make some of the most insightful political commentary via sarcastic jokes. The bottom line is "Success in Circuit lies" (Emily Dickinson again). Ironic humor takes the painful part of a Truth and mitigates it with a smirk, to make it palatable and indelible.

For my anonymous commentator I will now share my "Neighborly Love" poem below. And I think I'll start posting a series of ironic poetry over the next few posts--thanks for the inspiration, Anonymous!

Neighborly Love
by Susan L. Lipson

In ancient days, no doors were ever locked,
And silversmiths had not invented keys;
If Man had visitors, they never knocked,
For loving neighbors made him feel at ease.
And then one day, Man found his home was robbed;
Some thief had emptied all his walls and floors.
When neighbors heard, the silversmiths were mobbed;
The whole town asked for locks to bar their doors.
They left for church each Sunday with their keys,
To listen to the teachings of their Lord,
And "Love thy neighbor" had been one of these--
They'd seen it in their bibles, locked and stored.
Now when a neighbor visits Man he knocks,
For what makes loving neighbors but good locks?