Military poetry

Discussion in 'Poetry Corner' started by OldRedCap, Oct 3, 2004.

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  1. There has been a post on this but it was some while back and died. Hope that this might inspire some from those who missed earlier efforts.
    This is from the Goons' old mate McGonigal
  2. Captain_Crusty

    Captain_Crusty War Hero Reviewer Book Reviewer

    Dulce et Decorum Est

    Bent double, like old beggars under sacks,
    Knock-kneed, coughing like hags, we cursed through sludge,
    Till on the haunting flares we turned our backs
    And towards our distant rest began to trudge.
    Men marched asleep. Many had lost their boots
    But limped on, blood-shod. All went lame; all blind;
    Drunk with fatigue; deaf even to the hoots
    Of tired, outstripped Five-Nines that dropped behind.

    Gas! Gas! Quick, boys! – An ecstasy of fumbling,
    Fitting the clumsy helmets just in time;
    But someone still was yelling out and stumbling,
    And flound'ring like a man in fire or lime . . .
    Dim, through the misty panes and thick green light,
    As under a green sea, I saw him drowning.
    In all my dreams, before my helpless sight,
    He plunges at me, guttering, choking, drowning.

    If in some smothering dreams you too could pace
    Behind the wagon that we flung him in,
    And watch the white eyes writhing in his face,
    His hanging face, like a devil's sick of sin;
    If you could hear, at every jolt, the blood
    Come gargling from the froth-corrupted lungs,
    Obscene as cancer, bitter as the cud
    Of vile, incurable sores on innocent tongues,
    My friend, you would not tell with such high zest
    To children ardent for some desperate glory,
    The old Lie; Dulce et Decorum est
    Pro patria mori.

    Particularly apt when I am asked by my men what we are doing here...
  3. Here is one of my favorites.

    Memorial Day Poem

    We walked among the crosses
    Where our fallen soldiers lay.
    And listened to the bugle
    As taps began to play.

    The Chaplin led a prayer
    We stood with heads bowed low.
    And I thought of fallen comrades
    I had known so long ago.

    They came from every city
    Across this fertile land.
    That we might live in freedom.
    They lie here 'neath the sand.

    I felt a little guilty
    My sacrifice was small.
    I only lost a little time
    But these men lost their all.

    Now the services are over
    For this Memorial Day.
    To the names upon these crosses
    I just want to say,

    Thanks for what you've given
    No one could ask for more.
    May you rest with God in heaven
    From now through evermore.