Herbert Asquith was an English poet, novelist and lawyer.
He was the second son of H. H. Asquith, British Prime Minister — with whom he is frequently confused — and younger brother of Raymond Asquith. His wife Lady Cynthia Asquith, whom he married in 1910, the daughter of Hugo Richard Charteris, 11th Earl of Wemyss (1857–1937), was also a writer.
Asquith was greatly affected by his service with the Royal Artillery in World War I. His poems include "The Volunteer" and "The Fallen Subaltern", the latter being a tribute to fallen soldiers. His books include "Roon" and "Young Orland".
Here lies a clerk who half his life had spent
Toiling at ledgers in a city grey,
Thinking that so his days would drift away
With no lance broken in life’s tournament:
The starshells float above, the bayonets glisten;
We bear our fallen friend without a sound;
Below the waiting legions lie and listen
To us, who march upon their burial-ground.
The sea has a laugh
And the cliff a frown;
For the laugh of the sea is wearing him down.
Lipping and lapping
UNDER the stars the armies lie asleep:
Between the lines a quiet river flows
Through brakes of honeysuckle, and of rose,
And fields where poppies droop in languor deep