Maurice Baring (1874-?)


I saw you starting for another war,
The emblem of adventure and of youth,
So that men trembled, saying: "He forsooth
Has gone, has gone, and shall return no more."
And then out there, they told me you were dead,
Taken and killed; how was it that I knew,
Whatever else was true, that was not true?
And then I saw you pale upon your bed,
Scarcely two years ago, when you were sent
Back from the margin of the dim abyss;
For Death had sealed you with a warning kiss,
And let you go to meet a nobler fate:
To fight for hearth and home, O fortunate,
To die in battle with your regiment.

(Text from The Book of Sorrow.)

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