The Great War

from A Calendar of Verse, an electronic edition

The Lark

From wrath-red dawn to wrath-red dawn,

The guns have brayed without abate;

And now the sick sun looks upon

The bleared, blood-boltered fields of hate

As if it loathed to rise again.

How strange the hush! Yet sudden, hark!

From yon down-trodden gold of grain,

The leaping rapture of a lark.

A fusillade of melody,

That sprays us from yon trench of sky;

A new amazing enemy

We cannot silence though we try;

A battery on radiant wings,

That from yon gap of golden fleece

Hurls at us hopes of such strange things

As joy and home and love and peace.

Pure heart of song! do you not know

That we are making earth a hell?

Or is it that you try to show

Life still is joy and all is well?

Brave little wings! Ah, not in vain

You beat into that bit of blue:

Lo! we who pant in war's red rain

Lift shining eyes, see Heaven too.