Walter John de la Mare
1873 - 1958
Now each man's mind all Europe is;
Courage and fear in dread array
Daze each true heart; O grave and wise,
Abide in hope the judgement day.
This war of millions in arms
In myriad replica we wage;
Unmoved, then, soul by earth's alarms
The dangers of the dark engage.
Remember happy England: keep
For her bright cause thy latest breath.
Her peace that long hath lulled to sleep
May now exact the sleep of death
Her woods and wilds, her loveliness
With harvest now are richly at rest;
Safe in her isled securities
Thy children's heaven is her breast;
O what a deep, contented night
The sun from out her eastern seas
Would bring the dust which in her sight
Had given its all for these!
First published in The Times Literary Supplement
27 August 1914