Sunday 13 September 2015

Sunday War Poet...

The theme for this months poetry


The Soldier

The Soldier Speaks 


John Galsworthy

If courage thrives on reeking slaughter,
And he who kills is lord
Of beauty and of loving laughter —
Gird on me a sword!
If death be dearest comrade proven,
If life be coward's mate,
If Nazareth of dreams be woven —
Give me fighter's fate!

If God be thrilled by a battle cry,
If He can bless the moaning fight,
If when the trampling charge goes by
God Himself is the leading Knight;
If God laughs when the gun thunders.
If He yells when the bullet sings —
Then my stoic soul but wonders
How great God can do such things!

The white gulls wheeling over the plough,
The sun, the reddening trees —
We being enemies. I and thou,
There is no meaning to these.
There is no flight on the wings of Spring,
No scent in the summer rose;
The roundelays that the blackbirds sing —
There is no meaning in those!

If you must kill me — why the lark,
The hawthorn bud, and the corn?
Why do the stars bedew the dark?
Why is the blossom born?
If I must kill you — why the kiss
Which made you? There is no why!
If it be true we were born for this —
Pitiful Love, Goodbye!

Not for the God of battles!
For Honour, Freedom and Right,
And saving of gentle Beauty,
We have gone down to fight!

John Galsworthy

1867 - 1933

Was an English author, poet and playwright. He is perhaps best remembered for his series of novels, The Forsythe Saga, and its sequels, A Modern Comedy and The End of the Chapter, which he published between 1906 and 1921. 

He won the Nobel prize for Literature in 1932.


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