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Before Action by William Hodgson

 
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[Alan Seeger] [Charles Hamilton Sorley] [Edward Thomas] [Herbert Read] [Isaac Rosenberg] [John McCrae]
[Rupert Brooke] [Siegfried Sassoon] [Wilfred Owen] [William Noel Hodgson]

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Before Action

By William Hodgson

By all the glories of the day,
And the cool evening's benison:
By the last sunset touch that lay
Upon the hills when day was done:
By beauty lavishly outpoured,
And blessings carelessly received,
By all the days that I have lived,
Make me a soldier, Lord.
By all of all men's hopes and fears,
And all the wonders poets sing,
The laughter of unclouded years,
And every sad and lovely thing:
By the romantic ages stored
With high endeavour that was his,
By all his mad catastrophes,
Make me a man, O Lord.

I, that on my familiar hill
Saw with uncomprehending eyes
A hundred of Thy sunsets spill
Their fresh and sanguine sacrifice,
Ere the sun swings his noonday sword
Must say good-bye to all of this:?
By all delights that I shall miss,
Help me to die, O Lord.



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