Poets | Poem of the Day | Top 40 | Search | Comments | Privacy
December 10th, 2016 - we have 234 poets, 8,025 poems and 318,524 comments.
Randall Jarrell - Losses

It was not dying: everybody died. 
It was not dying: we had died before 
In the routine crashes-- and our fields 
Called up the papers, wrote home to our folks, 
And the rates rose, all because of us. 
We died on the wrong page of the almanac, 
Scattered on mountains fifty miles away; 
Diving on haystacks, fighting with a friend, 
We blazed up on the lines we never saw. 
We died like aunts or pets or foreigners. 
(When we left high school nothing else had died 
For us to figure we had died like.) 
In our new planes, with our new crews, we bombed 
The ranges by the desert or the shore, 
Fired at towed targets, waited for our scores-- 
And turned into replacements and worke up 
One morning, over England, operational. 
It wasn't different: but if we died 
It was not an accident but a mistake 
(But an easy one for anyone to make.) 
We read our mail and counted up our missions-- 
In bombers named for girls, we burned 
The cities we had learned about in school-- 
Till our lives wore out; our bodies lay among 
The people we had killed and never seen. 
When we lasted long enough they gave us medals; 
When we died they said, "Our casualties were low." 
The said, "Here are the maps"; we burned the cities. 
It was not dying --no, not ever dying; 
But the night I died I dreamed that I was dead, 
And the cities said to me: "Why are you dying? 
We are satisfied, if you are; but why did I die?"

Share |

Added: Feb 20 2003 | Viewed: 1303 times | Comments and analysis of Losses by Randall Jarrell Comments (260)

Losses - Comments and Information

Poet: Randall Jarrell
Poem: Losses

Comment 260 of 260, added on December 31st, 2015 at 11:23 AM.


zmxeagferLBGj from Samoa
Comment 259 of 260, added on November 28th, 2015 at 3:34 AM.

NIfev3 Way cool! Some extremely valid points! I appreciate you penning this article and also the rest of the website is extremely good.

fiverr crorkservice from Canada
Comment 258 of 260, added on November 9th, 2015 at 1:04 AM.

XrwAz4 There as definately a great deal to know about this subject. I love all of the points you have made.

crork service from Nigeria

Are you looking for more information on this poem? Perhaps you are trying to analyze it? The poem, Losses, has received 260 comments. Click here to read them, and perhaps post a comment of your own.

Poem Info

Jarrell Info
Copyright © 2000-2015 Gunnar Bengtsson. All Rights Reserved. Links