Robert Laurence Binyon

(1869-1943 / England)

Ypres - Poem by Robert Laurence Binyon

On the road to Ypres, on the long road,
Marching strong,
We'll sing a song of Ypres, of her glory
And her wrong.

Proud rose her towers in the old time,
Long ago.
Trees stood on her ramparts, and the water
Lay below.

Shattered are the towers into potsherds--
Jumbled stones.
Underneath the ashes that were rafters
Whiten bones.

Blood is in the cellar where the wine was,
On the floor.
Rats run on the pavement where the wives met
At the door.

But in Ypres there's an army that is biding,
Seen of none.
You'd never hear their tramp nor see their shadow
In the sun.

Thousands of the dead men there are waiting
Through the night,
Waiting for a bugle in the cold dawn
Blown for fight.

Listen when the bugle's calling Forward!
They'll be found,
Dead men, risen in battalions
From underground,

Charging with us home, and through the foemen
Driving fear
Swifter than the madness in a madman,
As they hear

Dead men ring the bells of Ypres
For a sign,
Hear the bells and fear them in the Hunland
Over Rhine!


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Poem Submitted: Wednesday, September 1, 2010



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