The Great War

from A Crown of Amaranth, an electronic edition

The Telegraph Boy.

DEATH bids his heralds go their way

On red-rimmed bicycles to-day.

Arrayed in blue, with streak of red,

A boy bears tidings of the dead:

He pedals merrily along,

Whistling the chorus of a song;

Passing the time of day with friends,

Until the journey almost ends.

Then slowing down, he scans each gate

For the doomed name upon the plate.

That done, he loudly knocks and rings,

Hands in the yellow missive; sings

His song. The maid says at the door

" No answer," and he's off once more.

* * * * * * *

No answer through the empty years!

No answer but a mother's tears!

(The Nation, (June 12th, 1915.)