Robert Laurence Binyon

(1869-1943 / England)

To The Enemy Complaining - Poem by Robert Laurence Binyon

Be ruthless, then; scorn slaves of scruple; avow
The blow, planned with such patience, that you deal
So terribly; hack on, and care not how
The innocent fall; live out your faith of steel.

Then you speak speech that we can comprehend.
It cries from the unpitied blood you spill.
And so we stand against you, and to the end
Flame as one man, the weapon of one will.

But when your lips usurp the loyal phrase
Of honour, querulously voluble
Of ``chivalry'' and ``kindness,'' and you praise
What you despise for weakness of the fool,

Then the gorge rises. Bleat to dupe the dead!
The wolf beneath the sheepskin drips too red.

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Poem Submitted: Wednesday, September 1, 2010

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