The Great War

from Great Poems of the World War, an electronic edition

An April Song

ORCHARD land! Orchard land!

Damson blossom, primrose bloom:

Avon, like a silver band

Winds from Stratford down to Broome:

All the orchards simmer white

For an April day's delight:

We have risen in our might,

Left this land we love, to light,

Fighting still, that these may stand,

Orchard land! Orchard land!

Running stream! Running stream!

Ruddy tench and silver perch:

Shakespeare loved the water's gleam

Sparkling on by Welford church:

Water lay meets woodland gnome

Where the silver eddies foam

Thro' the richly scented loam:

We are fain to see our home,

See again thy silver gleam,

Running stream! Running stream!

Silver throats! Silver throats!

Piping blackbird, trilling thrush:

Shakespeare heard your merry notes;

Still you herald morning's blush:

You shall sing your anthems grand

When we've finished what He planned.

God will hear and understand.

God will give us back our land

Where the water-lily floats,

Silver throats! Silver throats!