The Great War

from A Treasury of War Poetry, an electronic edition

Lines Written in Surrey, 1917

A sudden swirl of song in the bright sky --

The little lark adoring his lord the sun;

Across the corn the lazy ripples run;

Under the eaves, conferring drowsily,

Doves droop or amble; the agile waterfly

Wrinkles the pool; and flowers, gay and dun,

Rose, bluebell, rhododendron, one by one,

The buccaneering bees prove busily.

Ah, who may trace this tranquil loveliness

In verse felicitous? -- no measure tells;

But gazing on her bosom we can guess

Why men strike hard for England in red hells,

Falling on dreams, 'mid Death's extreme caress,

Of English daisies dancing in English dells.