I wrote I Am Never Drinking Again… in response to Attack by Siegfried Sassoon. My poem is a satire of what it means to be young and carefree, mocking my college days as I don’t do stuff like that anymore (well not like I used to).
Siegfried Sassoon was an English poet and soldier during The First World War. Whilst in a hospital in Scotland in 1917, he met fellow poet Wilfred Owen (I spoke about him earlier). They were friends but he also acted as Owen’s mentor.
Sassoon is mostly remembered for his polemic and compassionate poems about his time at war and his thoughts on the war itself. This made him a controversial figure, bringing him to public and critical acclaim.
Avoiding the blind patriotism and romanticism of the war, Sassoon wrote of the horrors and brutality of trench warfare. He satirised generals, politicians and the clergy for their incompetence in support of going to the front.
At first light, the young emerge drunk and done
staggering through the town’s tired sun,
drifting in hoards of women and blokes that manifest
tremors in the footpath’s yolk; and one by one,
toy soldiers tumble towards the wire.
At 7am, food joints open. Then some soberly, and
hopelessly – filled with Jägerbombs, Schnapps shots and
their loss of dignity, these partiers crawl to meet Subway’s choir.
Like Tamagotchis with dead faces, masked with fatigue,
they finish their sandwiches, climb over the top,
while time is an illusion – hungover heads and
hysterically hoping with fortune, that they drop down dead.
As they crawl upstairs past mom’s wagging finger
and flounder through the grass, O Jesus make it stop!