Modern Babylon

The walls of Babylon are high

Modern Babylon

The walls of Babylon are high



Thus appears a cable from London:

“The House of Commons discussed a vote of £20,000 to finance the Prince of Wales’s visit to South Africa and Argentine.

A Thousand Books of Fame

“Mr. Dave Kirkwood, Labor member for Dumbarton, said that he would be pleased to take the Prince to the working class parts of Glasgow and would show him sights such as he would be unable to see even among the aborigines of South Africa. It had been stated by individuals that the Prince had endeared himself to the hearts of the working class of Britain. Mr. Kirkwood did not believe it. (Cries of shame!)

“Mr. Kirkwood: Shame on you who are responsible for the awful conditions under which members of the class, from which I sprung, live and move and have their being. They it is who have sent me there to tell that your days are numbered.”

David Kirkwood (8 July 1872 – 16 April 1955)

And comes echoing dirge-like from the realms of reawakened memory the ominous roll of Ragnar Redbeard’s rendition of “Babylon”: —

O! The bowers of Babylon are rare,

And the tinkling fountains play,

Over gardens hung in the drowsy air,

Where careless youths and maidens fair

Are dreaming the years away.

And the kings of Babylon are strong,

And their dungeons dark and deep,

And the rich rejoice in their reign of wrong,

And the priesthood joins the robber’ song,

While the toilers work and weep.

And the walls of Babylon are high,

And their arches grim and low,

And the Birds of Commerce scream and fly,

While the proud old Thames River wanders by

In its dark, relentless flow.

But stern and still like a group of Fates,

Round the city’s roar and dim,

The Avenging Host of the conqueror waits

In the midnight hush without the gates,

While the feast goes on within.

For the river that rolls in Mammon’s pride

Shall the people’s servant be—

By God’s strong arm shall be turned aside,

And its channel surge with a greater tide

Than the pulse of the Northern Sea.

Daily Standard, 24 February 1925

*RAGNAR REDBEARD'S UNMASKED POEMS: Batteries of pristine scorn and revolutionary songs.

Curious to find out sources and origin to Ragnar Redbeard's poems. What inspired him, and did he inspire others?

*Includes Babylon.