Robert Laurence Binyon

(1869-1943 / England)

The Test - Poem by Robert Laurence Binyon

Naked reality, and menace near
As fire to scorching flesh, shall not affright
The spirit that sees, with danger--sharpened sight,
What it must save or die for; not the mere
Name, but the thing, now doubly, trebly dear,
Freedom; the breath those hands would choke; the light
They would put out; the clean air they would blight,
Making earth rank with hate, and greed, and fear.

Now no man's loss is private: all share all.
Oh, each of us a soldier stands to--day,
Put to the proof and summoned to the call;
One will, one faith, one peril. Hearts, be high,
Most in the hour that's darkest! Come what may,
The soul in us is found, and shall not die.

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Poem Submitted: Wednesday, September 1, 2010

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