03 March 2011

Made By the Criminal In Us

Here is the "Coda" to Auden's "Archaeology"--I hope you can find the time to read it all.

From Archaeology
one moral, at least, may be drawn,
to wit, that all

our school text-books lie.
What they call History
is nothing to vaunt of,

being made, as it is,
by the criminal in us:
goodness is timeless.

But perhaps this too is just as applicable (and better known) from "September 1, 1939"

I and the public know
What all schoolchildren learn,
Those to whom evil is done
Do evil in return.

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