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For poetry month.... - Wemyss's Appalling Hobby:
From the Party Guilty of Committing 'Gate of Ivory, Gate of Horn'
wemyss
wemyss
For poetry month....

Remembrance: Old Soldiers at the Cenotaph

 

The Bath chair or the Zimmer frame,

The agèd, gnarled, claw-like hand:

Was it to this that heroes came

In England’s green and pleasant land?

 

Do generations give just due

To those who faced the direst foe:

The Senior Service and the Few,

The BEF of long ago?

 

Burma – (Blenheim, Ramillies –),

The Mons Canal, El Alamein,

The ancient wars that won the peace

Are figured in their names again;

 

The trenches of the Kaiser’s war,

The aerodromes at grass in Kent,

The surge of ships in seas afar,

The bagpipes in the Orient –

 

‘Old men forget’?  No.  These persist,

Though backs are bent and eyes are blear,

The best who graced the Army List

When backs were straight and eyes were clear.

 

Or do they wish they slept beside

Their fellows who will not grow old,

The proven true however tried,

Refined from dross and wholly gold?

 

Ghost-comrades in a rank and file

That reaches back past Waterloo

Fall in behind them – with a smile,

That tells the warrior’s point of view.

 

The long, thin, red, unbroken line

Of history and struggle shared

Makes glories that will long outshine

The simple facts our school texts blared.

 

And these, now spent with weight of days,

Yet stand erect in heart and thought,

And match the bovine, staring gaze

Of those who live because they fought;

These yet, as honour fades and goes,

In times made fat and dull with peace,

Enjoy the warrior’s right repose

Who paid in blood for civil ease.

 

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Comments
themolesmother From: themolesmother Date: April 19th, 2007 06:28 am (UTC) (Link)
And these, now spent with weight of days,

Yet stand erect in heart and thought,

And match the bovine, staring gaze

Of those who live because they fought;


Love it.

Is this yours, or someone else's? It's great.

MM

wemyss From: wemyss Date: April 19th, 2007 03:44 pm (UTC) (Link)

Er, actually...

... I'm afraid it IS mine. Thank you for reading it despite that.
themolesmother From: themolesmother Date: April 20th, 2007 08:21 am (UTC) (Link)

Re: Er, actually...

I'm afraid it IS mine

I thought it probably was - I found it very moving. Particularly the lines I quoted. We Brits have fogotten far too easily what we owe to those who fought in both wars.

MM
wemyss From: wemyss Date: April 21st, 2007 05:03 pm (UTC) (Link)

Thanks, you're very kind.

Thank you.
nineveh_uk From: nineveh_uk Date: April 20th, 2007 12:19 pm (UTC) (Link)

Re: Er, actually...

It is indeed very good. Classic in style, and none the worse for that (I like poetry to rhyme).
wemyss From: wemyss Date: April 21st, 2007 05:04 pm (UTC) (Link)

Oh, thank you.

What a lovely thing to say. I'm very glad you liked it.
6 comments or Leave a comment