George Edward Woodberry

(1855-1930 / United States)

On the Italian Front MCMXVI


“I will die cheering, if I needs must die;
So shall my last breath write upon my lips
Viva Italia! when my spirit slips
Down the great darkness from the mountain sky;
And those who shall behold me where I lie
Shall murmur: ‘Look, you! how his spirit dips
From glory into glory! the eclipse
Of death is vanquished! Lo, his victor-cry!’

“Live, thou, upon my lips, Italia mine,
The sacred death-cry of my frozen clay!
Let thy dear light from my dead body shine
And to the passer-by thy message say:
‘Ecco! though heaven has made my skies divine,
My sons’ love sanctifies my soil for aye!’”

Submitted: Thursday, April 22, 2010

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