Was there love once? I have forgotten her.
Was there grief once? Grief yet is mine.
Other loves I have, men rough, but men who stir
More grief, more joy, than love of thee and thine.
It is midday; the deep trench glares….
A buzz and blaze of flies….
The beating of the guns grows louder.
'Not long, boys, now.'
My heart burns whiter, fearfuller, prouder;
For the last time, maybe, upon the knoll
I stand. The eve is golden, languid, sad.
Day like a tragic actor plays his role
Nearer and ever nearer...
My body, tired but tense,
Hovers 'twixt vague pleasure
And tremulous confidence.
Before, before he was aware
The 'Verey' light had risen… on the air
in hung glistering..
And he could not stay his hand
I must remember now how once I woke
To find the harsh lamplight stream upon her bed,
The ceiling tremble in its giddy smoke,
In a far field, away from England, lies
A boy I friended with a care like love;
All day the wide earth aches, the keen wind cries,
O Nightingale my heart
How sad thou art!
How heavy is thy wing,
Desperately whirrëd that thy throat may fling