The Great War

from Great Poems of the World War, an electronic edition

The Nightingales of Flanders

Permission to reproduce in this book.

"Le rossignol n'est pas mobilise."

--A French Soldier

THE nightingales of Flanders,

They had not gone to war;

A soldier heard them singing

Where they had sung before.

The earth was torn and quaking,

The sky about to fall;

The nightingales of Flanders,

They minded not at all.

At intervals we heard them

Between the guns, he said,

Making a thrilling music

Above the listening dead.

Of woodland and of orchard

And roadside tree bereft,

The nightingales of Flanders

Were singing "France is left!"