Sir Henry Newbolt

Sir Henry Newbolt Poems

There's a breathless hush in the Close to-night—
Ten to make and the match to win—
A bumping pitch and a blinding light,
An hour to play and the last man in.
...

Drake he's in his hammock an' a thousand miles away,
(Capten, art tha sleepin' there below?)
Slung atween the round shot in Nombre Dios Bay,
An' dreamin' arl the time O' Plymouth Hoe.
...

It was eight bells ringing,
For the morning watch was done,
And the gunner's lads were singing
As they polished every gun.
...

This is the Chapel: here, my son,
Your father thought the thoughts of youth,
And heard the words that one by one
The touch of Life has turn’d to truth.
...

‘Ye have robb’d,’ said he, ‘ye have slaughter’d and made an end,
Take your ill-got plunder, and bury the dead:
What will ye more of your guest and sometime friend?’
‘Blood for our blood,’ they said.
...

We loved our nightjar, but she would not stay with us.
We had found her lying as dead, but soft and warm,
Under the apple tree beside the old thatched wall.
Two days we kept her in a basket by the fire,
...

I was out early to-day, spying about
From the top of a haystack -- such a lovely morning --
And when I mounted again to canter back
I saw across a field in the broad sunlight
...

It fell in the year of Mutiny,
At darkest of the night,
John Nicholson by Jalándhar came,
On his way to Delhi fight.
...

Down thy valleys, Ireland, Ireland,
Down thy valleys green and sad,
Still thy spirit wanders wailing,
Wanders wailing, wanders mad.
...

O living pictures of the dead,
O songs without a sound,
O fellowship whose phantom tread
Hallows a phantom ground --
...

Our game was his but yesteryear;
We wished him back; we could not know
The self-same hour we missed him here
He led the line that broke the foe.
...

Praise thou with praise unending,
The Master of the Wine;
To all their portions sending
...

She is a lady fair and wise,
Her heart her counsel keeps,
And well she knows of time that flies
And tide that onward sweeps;
...

Effingham, Grenville, Raleigh, Drake,
Here's to the bold and free!
Benbow, Collingwood, Byron, Blake,
...

With failing feet and shoulders bowed
Beneath the weight of happier days,
He lagged among the heedless crowd,
Or crept along suburban ways.
...

16.

(from the French of Wenceslas, Duke of Brabant and Luxembourg, who died in 1384.)
I cannot tell, of twain beneath this bond,
...

By the hearth-stone
She sits alone,
The long night bearing:
With eyes that gleam
...

Mother, with unbowed head
Hear thou across the sea
The farewell of the dead,
The dead who died for thee.
...

A Song of the Great Retreat

Dreary lay the long road, dreary lay the town,
Lights out and never a glint o' moon:
...

The Squire sat propped in a pillowed chair,
His eyes were alive and clear of care,
But well he knew that the hour was come
...

Sir Henry Newbolt Biography

Born in Bilston, Staffordshire in 1862, Newbolt was educated at Clifton School and Oxford University. After his studies Newbolt became a barrister. Higly respected, Newbolt was a lawyer, novelist, playwright and magazine editor. Above all, he was a poet who championed the virtues of chivalry and sportsmanship combined in the service of the British Empire. Although his first novel, Taken from the Enemy, was published in time for his thirtieth birthday in 1892, Newbolt’s reputation was established in 1897 in a poem written about a schoolboy cricketer who grows up to fight in Africa, Vitai Lampada. The poem was well received both critically and publicly at the time. Shortly after war was declared Newbolt was recruited by the head of Britain’s War Propaganda Bureau (WPB), Charles Masterman, to help shape and maintain public opinion in favour of the war effort. Newbolt, who was appointed controller of telecommunications during the war, was knighted in 1915. The Companion of Honour followed in 1922. Newbolt authored two official volumes of the naval history of the war in the 1920s. His autobiography, My World as in My Time was published in 1932. Sir Henry Newbolt died in 1938.)

The Best Poem Of Sir Henry Newbolt

Vitaï Lampada

There's a breathless hush in the Close to-night—
Ten to make and the match to win—
A bumping pitch and a blinding light,
An hour to play and the last man in.
And it's not for the sake of a ribboned coat,
Or the selfish hope of a season's fame,
But his captain's hand on his shoulder smote
'Play up! play up! and play the game! '

The sand of the desert is sodden red,—
Red with the wreck of a square that broke; —
The Gatling's jammed and the Colonel dead,
And the regiment blind with dust and smoke.
The river of death has brimmed his banks,
And England's far, and Honour a name,
But the voice of a schoolboy rallies the ranks:
'Play up! play up! and play the game! '

This is the word that year by year,
While in her place the school is set,
Every one of her sons must hear,
And none that hears it dare forget.
This they all with a joyful mind
Bear through life like a torch in flame,
And falling fling to the host behind—
'Play up! play up! and play the game!

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