Cicely Fox Smith

(1 February 1882 – 8 April 1954 / Lymm, Cheshire)

Out And Away - Poem by Cicely Fox Smith

Follow, follow, you who sicken where the throngs pulsate and thicken,
Leave your doubting and your dreaming and your lazy, listless ease,
Leave the oft-trod streets of town for the springy, bracing down,
For the heather-scented moorland and the open, singing breeze.
For there's plenty left to live for that 'twere well your life to give for,
While the bell-voiced hounds are baying, and the ringing guns are playing,
And the sturdy sons of England are English sportsmen still.

Follow, follow, fast and fleetly, where the hounds are chiming sweetly,
Where the air blows keen and merry, and your horse is going strong,
Till you feel the swift blood flow that was wont to run so slow,
And the days that dragged so weary never seem an hour too long.
Over fence and into hollow, never falter, ever follow,
Never swerving for a moment, straight ahead o-er brook and brake,
For the lessons learned to-day may be needed far away,
In a strong cross-country gallop when there's life and death at stake.

Though the prize be but a trifle, prey of fishing-rod or rifle,
On the sultry moor in August, by the Highland stream in May,
Win your battles where you can; take misfortune like a man,
For he's never brave in earnest who isn't brave in play.
Tho' the real fight be weary, in some valley strange and dreary,
With the tribesmen sniping round you over every mound and hill,
Do your duty, friend and friend; struggle stubborn to the end,
And fight like English sportsmen and like English soldiers still.

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Poem Submitted: Monday, August 30, 2010

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