“…Truly men hate the truth; they’d
Meet a tiger on the road.”
Composed in 1948, Cassandra seems to reflect Jeffers realization that he was correct about the false sacrificial virtue of World War II—which some in retrospect have named as the war to save the Stalinist Soviet Union, the greatest murder machine of man’s most murderous century—and that just as his poetic warnings of that war were sneered at his suspicions surrounding the dawning Cold War would likewise be met with scorn. Jeffers own scorn is heaped on “religion venders” and “politicians” purveying their lies for the eager consumption of the idiot mases. As a reader in the twilight of the age he warned against his warnings against the lie-merchants that stoke the embers of perpetual war seem well-founded, as Americans clamor for their leaders to engage in military adventure in the name of security. Indeed, there seems to be something about War that calls many men to his priesthood.