Where have All The Flowers Gone?

Memories of Youth

In an era known as the 'Age of Aquarius',

Sheltered in innocence and the symbol of the flower,

Cleaving to the doctrine that profits guide the callus

Where all corruption comes from politics and power.

Rattling the slumbering giants of our great nation,

The children championed the motto:"Make Love, Not War",

Weeping in anger against racial segregation,

As their bodies tumbled to the ground in blood and gore.

They rocked the universe with the vow:"Give Peace A Chance",

And tripped through the summer nights in a benedonic haze,

Existing together in harmony and romance,

With long tresses, bell bottoms and love beads all the craze.

But, where are they now, these gentle progenies of peace?

Where are their protest banners, their love - ins, their flowers?

Where are their grand voices for freedom? What made them cease?

Are they snug behind walls of ivory white towers?

The war still frenzies on and no one's left on the bridge.

Children are still dying for their color and their pride.

There are no emblems of protest for peace on the ridge.

They see fear not compassion for the man by their side.

This deep sadness I feel for a lost generation,

Is this inasmuch as I pine for my own sweet youth?

Or is it the wasted years fighting for my nation,

Existing in a society that has lost the truth?


Amy Riberdy

Author's Notes/Comments: 

As always, i do not wish to influence the reader with my interpretation. I prefer the reader to find their own meaning to my poems.

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Afzal Shauq's picture

the lost things can return or replace except the youth and life...if once go, never come back.. but above all the good behavior, rich thoughts as you do will make alive for ever as you are.. I love this poem and the way you touch hearts is soo sweet..appreciate your poetry..

phil_carcione's picture

Excellent........we sure has some dissent back then didn't we.

Karyn Indursky's picture

When I read this poem, I feel like I'm sitting on a carpet in front of you with my medium blue eyes watching yours as you tell me a story. I hear your voice caress my mind as I wonder about what it'd be like, feel like to the child watching my flesh and blood dying because of their color and pride. I feel the tears burn in my eyes before they travel their trail and make me feel more as I continue being in this story. Yet, even when I finish reading it, I'm not freed from this scenario because even today this problem exists. It doesn't matter that I'm white, blonde, blue eyed. Domination is all the matters to blind guns firing. Mercy has no eyes or ears and feels nothing. So, hopefully, someday someone will read your poem and stop before we die in a blood bath. Thanks for the read and insight.

Kristine Snow's picture

Amy, You tell it like it was....groovy! I know it wasn't all peace and light BUT I do think that our generation was on the right track. I feel for the youth of today. There IS hope....there are some of the younger generation (and a few right here on Post Poems) that seem to have the right ideals....we can only hope and dream, like we did in the past, that they can make enough of a difference.


robertpaullocke's picture

I know where they are now. At the mall wearing fanny pack and buying sneakers with lights in them.

Richard Elliott's picture

Well they are still here in bell-bottoms and braids, But as the world grew they had to change place, With the authorities that once were the living end, And the children of flowers by e-mail now send, They help mind their descendants and tell them the tales, Of the liberation of South Africans and other diplays, Of what happens when people stand up for their rights, Though warn the journey can be an unpleasnt sight, But if you believe in a world to be just, You will try with all effort and feel that you must, Rally with peers and fight 'til you've bust, To save a little blue planet turning to dust. You are an inspiration Amy, Thanks, Richard.E.

Robert  LaFountain's picture

Amy---my heart bleeds and yearns for those days gone by when 'Give peace a chance' was acceptable by the powers that be. How sad that the proletariat has managed to quell the masses so effectively wtih theri constant grinding down of any and virtually ALL who would dare to speak up against it. So many great and prolific writers foretold of society as it is becoming today---Toffler in his 'Brave New World', 'Farenheit 451', Orwell in his '1984'...The list goes on almost ad infinitum. Need i say more. It breaks my heart to have to admit that at the age of 52 I too have been beaten down and left wondering the age old question "Who will rise up against the powerful plitical machinations of government and big business?" Does this mean I have given up all hope for a better world of tomorrow where freedom and liberty once again reign supreme? Absolutely not. It just seems to be so far from reality at this point. Great piece ofwriting. Thank you for sharing such passion and concern. I believe that a power greater than the one driving this world will have to intervene in whatever form that intervention might take. Keep sharing your passion with us. Wonderful writing and soul. Goldeneagle

hawksquaw99's picture

Oh Amy..... I have to say... that this made me shed some tears.... I love this... it will be my favorite of your from now on.... where have the flowers gone.... I think that they are dead.... right along with those that use to tend to them.... many of the ones that use to help this fight have long since been murdered.... what a shame... when you think about it.... life... a sad price to pay for the right to just live and let live.... you my friend amaze me with the depth of your work.... one day I to wish to be that deep..... I think part of my problem is that I will ponder on something until it makes no sense to me....LOL.... this was wonderfully written... and I bow to you... you are the Goddess of the Truth...... and may you reign forever over post poems.....

Melvin Lee's picture

The flowers have withered,.... scorched under the searing heat of an oppressive society crazed by materialism and bent on corruption....they have withered under the barren soil of an uncaring socety at large, whose main ideal is not to make love or war, but to make money and fame....and they have withered under the poisonous rain of deceit and trickery, tainted by such essence that cause their flowerseeds to be deformed , degenerated. definitely a very meaningful , powerful piece, Amy. and as u can see, it's very thought-provoking for me too... Is it intentional that u have used the song title by The Kingston Trio ? I have always like this song of theirs - simple, flowing , cyclical and full of compassion , a lyrical protest against the cruelty of war, and of society. And may i add that i marvel at how u choose your rhyming words that fit so well...enhancing the coherence of the piece. Surely, a MOST poignant piece here. thanxs for sharing, Amy. I wish u well. *sad* smilesz.

Mona Omar's picture

children still dying for thier color and thier pride men are still dying for predjudice what a shame !!!! peace is murdered every day innocence is murderd everyday oh amy this is a beautiful poem a call for peace which is lost , youth lost in hatred instead on love