War Poetry

Discussion in 'Poetry Corner' started by itsforcharidee, Nov 22, 2009.

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  1. Looking for a recommendation for favourite war poems - old or new - that would be suitable to read at a charity event in aid of the armed forces.

    Thank you...
  2. The German Guns by S Baldrick

    Wife bought me Out in the dark a few weeks ago, some good ones in there
  3. Anything by Wilfred Owen or Siegfried Sassoon
  4. The Faber Book of War Poetry. ISBN 0-571-17453-1
  5. Out of Bounds

    I’ve fought beneath the scorching sun,
    On sandy battlegrounds.
    Though many a time a town is won,
    Its always out of bounds.

    Though NCOs and privates too,
    Lay dead ‘neath sandy mounds,
    It’s the only place – and this is true,
    That’s never out of bounds.

    Every rank in battledress,
    From sergeants to major’s crowns,
    Never use each other’s mess,
    Because it’s out of bounds.

    And when in town on precious leave,
    To spend your hard earned pounds,
    Unless you’ve ‘tapes’ upon your sleeve,
    The best show’s out of bounds.

    I fight for Britain and her cause,
    On democratic grounds,
    But sad to say its here I pause,
    For England’s out of bounds.

    To each and all, a mother’s son,
    That fights till victory sounds,
    Just grant the same to one and all,
    And banish out of bounds.

    792177 Sergeant Arthur Bilton RA (Deceased)
    237/60th Field Regiment Royal Artillery.

    (Dunkirk, Middle East and North Africa (8th Army) and Italy)
  6. Gremlin

    Gremlin LE Good Egg (charities)

    Try using the Search Function on here for Poetry.

    There are about 4 threads, two of them quite long, brimming with what you are after.
  7. Robert Graves...........and read Goodbye To All That when done.
  8. Auld-Yin

    Auld-Yin LE Reviewer Book Reviewer Reviews Editor

    That sounds good. How does it go again?
  9. thank you all very much. I'll take a look.
  10. don't just look at the WW1 poems - there are some truly exquisite poems of WW2. The RAF produced some fine poets (or recruited some, whatever). Keith Douglas (How to kill) was a great talent, sadly cut off, as was Alun Lewis (All day it has rained). Oh an one of the most well known is Henry Reed, author of Naming of Parts and Aids to judging distances (the latter a personal favourite with its last lines:

    "There may be dead ground in between; and I may not have got
    The knack of judging a distance. I will only venture
    A guess that perhaps between me and the apparent lovers
    (Who, incidentally, appear by now to have finished),
    At seven o'clock from the houses, is roughly a distance
    Of about one year and a half.")
  11. An Irish Airman Foresees His Death - W B Yeats

    I know that I shall meet my fate
    Somewhere among the clouds above;
    Those that I fight I do not hate,
    Those that I guard I do not love;
    My country is Kiltartan Cross,
    My countrymen Kiltartan's poor,
    No likely end could bring them loss
    Or leave them happier than before.
    Nor law, nor duty bade me fight,
    Nor public men, nor cheering crowds,
    A lonely impulse of delight
    Drove to this tumult in the clouds;
    I balanced all, brought all to mind,
    The years to come seemed waste of breath,
    A waste of breath the years behind
    In balance with this life, this death.

    It certainly helped me at times...
  12. Without wanting to plug one of my favourite websites ;)

    You could try


    Lots on there from servicing and ex forces, familes and those affected by war. There's plenty to choose from and even a couple of books ! It's a not for profit organisation doing with the aim of becoming a full charity.

  13. oldbaldy

    oldbaldy LE Moderator Good Egg (charities)
    1. Battlefield Tours

    Arrse poetry thread
  14. Yeats? The closest he got to the war was tutting over his copy of the Irish Independent of a morning. He then slagged off Wilfred Owen - a man who could hardly defend himself what with being a bit dead. Mind you he also slagged off the leaders of the Easter Rising because of his perceived superiority (their inferiority?) on intellectual and class grounds. Snobbish twunt.

    However he did win a Nobel prize in 1923 - which proves you can win a Nobel prize and still be a bell-end. On the other hand I seriously like The Second Coming http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Second_Coming_(poem)
  15. I'll take your word for that, the poem, however, always seemed apt when I was in Aden, Borneo, Cyprus, etc. Not my problem, not my war...