With Influence

With Influence

Communicates with influence; he does,
he states it as it is – impressively.
He situates a phrase; gives emphasis,
he waits – delivers it expressively.
He orchestrates his audience; at ease,
he waits for sense and sensibility.
He situates a pause; an awkward tease,
he baits the line with sensitivity.
He modulates his tone; to rise and fall,
creates an uplifting draft – wafterly.
He contemplates what might be possible;
skates the surface, and nurtures novelty.
. He agitates his company; he stirs,
. he celebrates the mix – as it occurs.

© Tim Grace, 13 February 2014


To the reader: Tangles can be fun to unravel. I remember, as a child, finding balls of discarded fishing line on the beach. A mess of sand and tackle, endlessly wrapped in coils of knotted nylon thread. The business of unravelling had little purpose to it. I was learning that through frustration you could find satisfaction. Within most things we do, there’s an opportunity to play with ideas; to craft creative solutions – for pleasure’s sake alone.

To the poet: It wasn’t until late in the editing process that I stumbled on why this sonnet was proving a stubborn beast to massage into shape. I’d forgotten that the “Oh, so clever poet!” had decided to apply an extra set of rhymes to the beginning of each line. Something he thought might have been fun to do but later regretted. Upon reflection the extra-effort has probably detracted from the final outcome; and so it is.


Selfless in Sacrifice

Selfless in Sacrifice

We do not know this young Australian’s name.
We do not know his age or circumstance.
He lived not for glory, died not for fame.
Selfless in sacrifice, we owe him thanks.
He’s just one of many who died at war;
gave away his everything – for our sake.
One of many who rests forever more.
In his pursuit of peace we too partake.
He is all of them, and he is one of us.
He’s the collective spirit of our dead.
He’s the me, the you, the voice, the chorus,
the sacrifice; the ‘he’ who died instead.
. He laid down his life, surely not in vain.
. Let him remind us not of loss but gain.

© Tim Grace, 7 December 2013


To the reader: It’s Rememberance Day 1993, and Australia’s Prime Minster (Paul Keating) delivers a beautifully crafted eulogy honouring the Unknown Soldier. The speech ends with: “It is not too much to hope, therefore, that this Unknown Australian Soldier might continue to serve his country – he might enshrine a nation’s love of peace and remind us that in the sacrifice of the men and women whose names are recorded here there is faith enough for all of us…”

To the poet: Paul Keating and his speech writer (Don Watson) stripped back the ceremonial metaphors to highlight a much stronger message about the power of ordinary people doing extraordinary deeds on behalf of others. Free of pomp, sincerity speaks with integrity … through remembrance peace becomes our future vision. I hope my conversion of the speech does it no injustice.


Selfless in Sacrifice

Selfless in Sacrifice
Picture Sources:
1 – http://youtu.be/tGh0HdG9ViA
2 – http://youtu.be/YRkH1X9tBVU