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This is the Way the World Ends.,Not With a Bang But A Whimper

Updated on April 11, 2013

Not with a Bang but a Whimper

I wish I could remember the title or a T.S. Eliot poem that I loved in school.

T.S.Eliot , in my mind is one of the greatest poets of modern times

It took me a while when I was young to understand the following lines from one of his poems, yet once I had grasped the meaning , or more so the feeling of his words I've never forgotten them. Sadly I've just forgotten the rest of the poem/

"This is the way the world ends,

This is the way the world ends,

This is the way the world ends,

Not with a BANG, but a whimper..

,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,, T. S. Eliot .

Many people have quoted to me the words of a song from the movie "South Pacific"

"You got to have a dream, if you don't have a dream

How you gonna have a dream come true.?"


Sorry to be a killjoy, but I see no point in dreaming.

I've not had one come true

Why wish upon a star,?

They have no power over you.

not with a bang but a whimper

You are looking at the Citarun River near the Indonesian Capital of Jaksrta
You are looking at the Citarun River near the Indonesian Capital of Jaksrta

Not with a BANG but a Whimper

 Do pixies and fairies help you as well?

Pixies and faiiries, can they cast a spell?

Is that how you dream, for your dreams to come true?

By asking a pixie to do it for you?

Please!!!! give me a break, Dreams are for children.

If it's a goal, they have, to be a ballerina

Or be the next king of football,

Fair enough, wish them well. Ambition is good.

But dreams? Dreams are different, complete waste of time,

Can you prove something different? No, Nobody can.

Dreams only come true if they're the 'fake' ones,

Like a millionaire, I guess he could make them.

So Sorry, my friends, but life makes me sick.

I'm fed up of rapists,who get a slap on the wrist,

I hate seeing gun toting children, ready to shoot.

Did they dream of this rifle their holding?

Somehow, don't think so. They're wrenched from their families , so very young.

Now the hand that feeds them gives them a gun.

So do as they're told, Know no other way.

What would they dream of?  doesn't really matter., still be a dream.

Dreams don't come true, not in this world.

Heaven help us all if this is all there is.

The rivers polluted,  Dead fish.

The bees are dying. No pollinated crops.

The ocean's a tip! A vast dumping ground.

I say it again. It all makes me sick.

This beautiful earth that once was just that,

now being ruined for all the "Fat Cats"

Don't bother to dream. Dreams don't come true.

May as well go and blow bubbles

As I'm about to do.

then try to remember that wonderful poem........

This is the way the world ends,

This is the way the world ends,

This is the way the world ends,

Not with a BANG , but a whimper.!!!........


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  • Dim Flaxenwick profile image

    Dim Flaxenwick 4 years ago from Great Britain

    Lovely comment, PegCole, thank you very much.

    I have recently been saying to my friends that if only everyone would do their own little bit, however small,........ what a wonderful world it could be.

  • PegCole17 profile image

    Peg Cole 4 years ago from Dallas, Texas

    I love that poem by T.S. Elliot. It was quoted in the movie "The Stand" about an end of the world scenario. Sometimes it does seem as if things have gone over the edge and I worry for our future generations. Pretty grim stuff but it reminds us that we are the hope of the future. We can each make a difference.

  • Dim Flaxenwick profile image

    Dim Flaxenwick 6 years ago from Great Britain

    i´m honoured to have you pass comment. Thank you.

  • profile image

    MrDSpade2 6 years ago

    Wassup Dim, you had me at "This is the way the world ends", i read ur poem all the way thru, quoting a professional was the rite thing to do, if i was skilled as you, i would show the same respect, so i just leave now, say well done, for ur work, i could never reject...

  • Dim Flaxenwick profile image

    Dim Flaxenwick 7 years ago from Great Britain

    Thank you , Michael for you insight.. I did manage to find the poem , thanks to TonyMac04, but for some reason I have always seen the last lines in a more literal sense. I appreciate your input and shall toddle off to read it again. Pleased to meet you on hubpages.

  • profile image

    Michael 7 years ago

    Just writing to say that in case you haven't found the rest of the poem, it's called "The Hollow Men", and the final lines are about Guy Fawkes and the gunpowder plot which is also mentioned earlier in the poem. The poem also references other poems like the Divine Comedy and others. But the last lines mean more about a change of ideas then the actual end of the world.

  • Dim Flaxenwick profile image

    Dim Flaxenwick 7 years ago from Great Britain

    What a great compliment. Thank you very much. Take care

  • epigramman profile image

    epigramman 7 years ago

    ...well I'll always leave your hubs not with a whimper but a bang on a can ......because they are so righteous and inspired .. and I beat the drum for you!!!

  • Dim Flaxenwick profile image

    Dim Flaxenwick 7 years ago from Great Britain

    thanks for commenting. We can all try to make the world a better place.

  • epigramman profile image

    epigramman 7 years ago

    ..but my world has not ended - it has just begun - when they put me here like a baby Moses in front of your doorstep of a very alluring and provocative hubworld!

  • DREAM ON profile image

    DREAM ON 7 years ago

    You are a realist and see what life is.I agree there are so many problems that the world seems impossible to correct.But it is the dreamers who keep trying and after failure after failure they never give up.They persist against all odds to make one thing better.Maybe one person at a time.Then the chain reaction of good things can happen.But nothing happens exactly how we had planned.We are human and make some of the most rediculous stupid mistakes.That cost lives and the future of many.I can not change that.I can enjoy a little babys smile about nothing.I can enjoy holding the door for an elderly man.I can enjoy time and time again the beauty of the flowers and nature.I do enjoy the animals that survived through the ages.I do enjoy the technology we have to communicate all around the world.I know there is a price to pay for everything.I know the world will never be the dream I dream.But for the remainder of my life I will find a way to enjoy every moment I get.When I was born I had a 50 /50 chance of making it.I was born premature and luckily technology was able to keep me alive.I thank God I survived.My younger brother was also born premature but they couldn't save him.So every day is a gift even if it is a broken one.It is the only one I know and I play with it as if it was new.I respect your opinion and learn alot from others who understand the terrible things that do go on.I always am enlightened by your works.I just have to be the flip side of the coin and I hope life comes up 50/50 so we both get what we want.Take care and thanks for being a friend.

  • Dim Flaxenwick profile image

    Dim Flaxenwick 7 years ago from Great Britain

    You seem to be right on my waivelenghth. I'm fighting within muself to be hopeful. Don't find it easy.

    As for T.S.Eliot , don't know what he was on , but I still the lines ending in 'not with a bang, but a whimper'

  • Run Down Battery profile image

    Run Down Battery 7 years ago from UK

    Great hub Dim... but what is that man on?? And as for hope.... dream on!

  • Dim Flaxenwick profile image

    Dim Flaxenwick 7 years ago from Great Britain

    Thanks for that , James. Didn´t mean it to be totally negative. Where there´s life, thre´s always hope.

  • James A Watkins profile image

    James A Watkins 7 years ago from Chicago

    Without hope, we are lost. Everybody needs hope. No matter what happens, I will continue to hope for a better tomorrow. Thank you for reminding me of this great poem.

  • Dim Flaxenwick profile image

    Dim Flaxenwick 7 years ago from Great Britain

    Tony You have made my day!!!.. Or course.....We are the hollow men we are the stuffed men......

    Thank you so much.

    I'd prefer the world not to end with a nuclear bomb NOR a whimpering , gradual , dying of the species. Yet those lines keep coming back to me when ever I hear of one more endangered species or see apicture like the one on my hub of the river in Indonesia. RIVER? It was just a garbage dump.

    Thank you again . i can't wait to find and read the whole poem again. I must have only been about 14 when it made an impression on me.

    peace and love x

  • tonymac04 profile image

    Tony McGregor 7 years ago from South Africa

    This is a very interesting and insightful Hub. I really enjoyed it. t really highlights so much of what afflicts the world today.

    The poem, BTW, is Eliot's The Hollow Men. It starts "We are the hollow men / We are the stuffed men / leaning together / headpiece filled with straw, Alas!"

    It ends with the lines you have quoted.

    My mantra (and I hope it's not too late!) is Reduce, Re-use, Re-cycle. We definitely need to reduce our consumption and our reliance on others; we need to re-use whatever we can, rather than buying new; and what we can't re-use we need to re-cycle. These are imperatives, really.

    Thanks for sharing

    Love and peace


  • Dim Flaxenwick profile image

    Dim Flaxenwick 7 years ago from Great Britain

    Can you just explain to me , please what you mean by everything started with a dream ?

    I appreciate your comment.

  • pinkhawk profile image

    pinkhawk 7 years ago from Pearl of the Orient

    ...I think we have different opinions regarding dreams because for me almost everything started from a dream then it's up to us how to achieve and have it in reality (after conquering negative things and failures). But of course we must not depend entirely on mythical things, they are for inspiration but the 99% perspiration still lies in our hand... I can never tell how the world will end but with a whimper— could be!...only God knows! ^_^

  • Dim Flaxenwick profile image

    Dim Flaxenwick 7 years ago from Great Britain

    Hi Micky !!!! Thank you for your hub within a hub. You can never say or write too much for me. I enjoy it all.

    I'm grateful for all your agreement with me because I know some people think I'm just being negative. I think I'm seeing the truth and so did T.S.Eliot. We're just gradually letting the planet die . Recycle yes but too little too late.

    I'm not a miserable person . How could I be .? I laugh every day reading you.?!!!!

    I truly appreciate all your feedback. You are a Pal. (don't know if Pal translates into American)

    God bless x

  • Dim Flaxenwick profile image

    Dim Flaxenwick 7 years ago from Great Britain

    Thanks Tantrum. This too shall pass., as they say in India. Take care. x

  • Micky Dee profile image

    Micky Dee 7 years ago

    Hi Dim. I talk too much. I can't sleep right now and I wonder how you are.

    It's a long road with cobble stones and too much debris. It just doesn't have to be. I wish people could see. Joyce Kilmer had it right. There's no poem as lovely as a tree.

    You have a great heart. Thanks for caring Dim.

  • Micky Dee profile image

    Micky Dee 7 years ago

    Kids are taught about Santa Claus, the Easter bunny, tooth fairy, fairy tails about our governments. My child asked if Santa was real I told her know. She is one of the most wonderful people in the world. She's kind.

    George Washington never chopped down a cherry tree.

    I have to agree with so much you say Dim.

    Capitalism, the way it is run largely should be outlawed. You can pretty much buy who and what you want and screw it or them up. Profit is the bottom line so much that it is power. It's power for people without souls who are making hells for themselves.

    The Golden Rule should be the LAW of the land. The dove should be the symbol and mascot of every nation.

    Everybody should have a real job- even ball players, cyclists, runway models, actresses, actors, politicians, etc.

    Every person should do some kind of "public service"- armed forces, peace corps, etc.

    In our USA, folks keep wearing the blinders making themselves blind. They keep voting republican and democratic. We have the most charming dictatorship in the world and "we" say we're free. Money makes you free. Power makes you free. These two parties are evenly divided which keeps one half at the other half. It's perfect.

    Most industrialized nations are appalled about 911. First off- there has been a shoddy investigation into 911 and a cover-up at the very least. HOWEVER- the "INJUSTICE SYSTEM" of America is appalling. If you do a search for wrongly convicted, jailed, put to death, etc. -your search will never end.

    I have mostly this one "nail" that I'm trying to hammer home. It's the Golden Rule. If religions are not teaching it, if governments aren't pushing it- these institutions are false.

    "Well gee Micky Dee- there is so much good going on in the world. Can't you focus more on those things?"

    I ride my bike. I eat well. I'm charitable, etc. These things are not detrimental to life! Having a "false government" for the elite, sacrificing the poor ---let's say in our courts alone---is horrendous! This is not good government. "But, Micky Dee, it's the best!" If it's horrible it doesn't matter if it's the best. What we have is horrible.

    It is taught that hundreds of years ago, Paul Revere rode a horse screaming "The British are coming! The British are coming!" He didn't say that for sure. The British were here. They were running stores, farming! Now it's "Look out! The Mexicans are coming! We need laws. We need a fence!" The Mexicans have been very close to "here" for thousands of years. Get ready. The Mexican birthrates will be cementing their presence here and will be the most populated race here in America. So, buenos dias! Meanwhile- if you hire a lawyer, pretending that you can afford one so that you may only appeal for your life and freedom, these folks will be speaking Latin for you!

    Sorry for creating a hub here inside your hub. Thanks Dim. We "escape" as we can by different means "temporarily" but real dreams are not coming true. Jesus said to pray the Lord's Prayer. This prayer asks that this planet will be as heaven is. People are not praying that prayer. They are not demanding what God wants for us. You are the dreamer Dim. I am a dreamer. We can see a better dream. It's so plain for us. We will most certainly not see it come true. You are correct. But, we are the dreamers. Most others- sorry -they are defeated! Worry about a chip being put in our heads? People have a chip in their heads, on their shoulders, etc. Dream on Dim. We can see how "it" should be! Dream on!

  • tantrum profile image

    tantrum 7 years ago from Tropic of Capricorn

    I hope it's not hitting TOO hard !My best wishes to you ! :)

  • Dim Flaxenwick profile image

    Dim Flaxenwick 7 years ago from Great Britain

    I wish I could join you, Tantrum.

    Reality seems to be hitting me too hard in the face at the moment. LOL xx

  • tantrum profile image

    tantrum 7 years ago from Tropic of Capricorn

    I know what 'reality' is. I choose to dream ! LOL

  • Dim Flaxenwick profile image

    Dim Flaxenwick 7 years ago from Great Britain

    Seems to me we are ruining the planet, so those words of T.S.Eliot made me think that we don't have to worry about an enormous bang of a bomb. The world will just whimper away. one species at a time.

    Thank for you comment. Take care

  • Moulik Mistry profile image

    Moulik Mistry 7 years ago from Burdwan, West Bengal, India

    Yes the end is so mysterious - will it come any time sooner?

  • Dim Flaxenwick profile image

    Dim Flaxenwick 7 years ago from Great Britain

    Thanks singlmom . I was a bit depressed when I wrote it. I wonder how T.S. Eliot was feeling when he wrote his??? Got to find that poem again somehow.

    Hope you are coping with all your problems. God Bless and thank you for you optimism. xx

  • profile image

    singlmomat52 7 years ago

    You are right Dim, but without dreams it would be a mighty boring world.

    It truly is sad what this world is coming to.

    But there is still beauty to be seen and dreams to be dreamed.

    It is something we need to allow ourselves to escape the ugliness. Great Hub, Dim. thank you.

    God Bless xxx