IN MEMORIAM – RING OUT
Ring out, wild bells, to the wild sky,
The flying cloud, the frosty light:
The year is dying in the night;
Ring out, wild bells, and let him die.
Ring out the old, ring in the new,
Ring, happy bells, across the snow:
The year is going, let him go;
Ring out the false, ring in the true.
Ring out the grief that saps the mind
For those that here we see no more;
Ring out the feud of rich and poor,
Ring in redress to all mankind.
Ring out a slowly dying cause,
And ancient forms of party strife;
Ring in the nobler modes of life,
With sweeter manners, purer laws.
Ring out the want, the care, the sin,
The faithless coldness of the times;
Ring out, ring out my mournful rhymes
But ring the fuller minstrel in.
Ring out false pride in place and blood,
The civic slander and the spite;
Ring in the love of truth and right,
Ring in the common love of good.
Ring out old shapes of foul disease;
Ring out the narrowing lust of gold;
Ring out the thousand wars of old,
Ring in the thousand years of peace.
Ring in the valiant man and free,
The larger heart, the kindlier hand;
Ring out the darkness of the land,
Ring in the Christ that is to be.
Ring out is a poem written by Lord Alfred Tennyson and it’s collocated in his poem collection “In Memoriam”.
This poem respect the typical Tennyson’s scheme (first and last line are aligned, while second and third are intended). It’s composed by 8 stanzas of 4 lines. The rhyme scheme reflects the structural one; in fact, the rhyme scheme is ABBA – CDDC- EFFE- GHHG- IJJI- KLLK- MNNM- OPPO. There is regular punctuation and each line begins with capital letter.
This poem is full of repetition: ring out, ring in, wild bells, love. The repetition of ring out and ring in makes an onomatopoeic sound, that remembers the telephone and the bells’ sound. In the second line the poet says “the frosty light” that introduces the time setting: it’s winter.
“The year is dying in the night” (line 3), “and let him die” (line 4) and “The year is going, let him go” (line 7) are all personification of the year. “For those that here we see no more” (line 10) it’s a sentence that refers to his died friend. “Ring out false pride in place and blood, The civic slander and the spite” (lines 21-22) is a criticism against the prudery society. The last line, “Ring in the Christ that is to be”, is a religious message.
To sum up, I think that it’s a great poem which it’s able, thank the words’ contrast, to let you imagine what the poem was thinking about. However I don’t like the last line whit is message, because I think it’s inappropriate in this contest.