[identity profile] duathir.livejournal.com
The Jester In The Trench

"That just reminds me of a yarn," he said;
And everybody turned to hear his tale
He had a thousand yarns inside his head.
They waited for him, ready with their mirth
And creeping smiles, - then suddenly turned pale,
Grew still, and gazed upon the earth.
They heard no tale. No further word was said.
And with his untold fun,
Half leaning on his gun,
They left him - dead.

By Leon Gellert
[identity profile] duathir.livejournal.com
Rendezvous

Long before the dawn breaks
With a bird's cry,
I'll be hustling on the wind
Out where you lie -
Hurrying to our rendezvous
Under the April sky.
I'll step from out the sea again
To the shoulder of the land,
And pass the dead boy where he lies
Prone on the tideless strand,
Treading lightly lest I move
His fingers in the sand.

Do you remember how you stopped
After the sudden climb,
Sniffing the air as one who comes
On a holy thing sublime?
I'll meet you where the breeze brought
The first scent of thyme.
I'll meet you where we yearned that morn.
Under the April sky,
Waiting on our bellies there
For the battle cry.

I'll meet you where I left you there
Lying all awry.
You said, "We will continue the
Discussion by and by."
. . . . . . . .

If I could but remember what
We spoke of, you and I!

by Leon Gellert
[identity profile] duathir.livejournal.com
Red

Place that bayonet in my hand,
And fill this pouch with lead;
Show me the blood and leave me, and let me
Stand
By my dead.

Cover those staring eyes and go
And stab in the red, red rain.
Show me that blood and leave me. They groan
In the snow.
With the pain.

Cover his head with a scarlet cloak,
And run to your scarlet strife,
Show me that blood and leave me, where white
Snows choke
Out the life.

Turn his face to the sanguine skies,
The skies where the red stars move.
Show me that blood and leave me; a dead man lies
With his love.

by Leon Gellert
[identity profile] duathir.livejournal.com

The Three Concerned

The Man

He lies forgotten 'neath the watching skies,
the blood upon his bayonet scarlet bright;
the red moon shining in his glazed eyes,
the 'Last Post' crying, crying in the night.

The Woman

She proudly sits within her home of gloom,
and reads and reads his lines with wistful smile,
then, eyes aglisten, seeks the empty room
(and he within his bloody grave the while.)

The Child

His wooden war-horse stands beside his bed,
his tiny pillow holds a head of gold.
He dreams of all the things his father said,
he dreams of all the tales his father told.

by Leon Gellert

[identity profile] duathir.livejournal.com
War!

When my poor body died, —Alas!
I watched it topple down a hill
And sink beside a tuft of grass.
…….. I laughed like mad,
……. and laughing still
I bowed and thanked the bit of shell
That set me free and made me glad.
Then quietly,
I strolled to Hell.

by Leon Gellert
[identity profile] duathir.livejournal.com
Dreams of France

Oh, dreams of France! Oh, faded dreams of France!
Oh France, that I had ever dreamed of thee!
I thought to help thee bear thy brandished lance,
But, lo, I sail the blue Aegean sea!
Sweet thoughts of thee still stand before mine eyes
While I lie fettered in this stagnant cage;
Unseen by me the golden Grecian skies,
Forgotten is the Grecian Golden Age.
Drear and dank this stale Ionian bark,
That plods its path along Aegean ways.
Could I but see old Homer, tall and dark,
And hear the battle-laughter of his lays!
Farewell, oh France! Farewell, thou tortured West!
Bear strong thy shield above thine outraged breast.

By Leon Gellert
[identity profile] duathir.livejournal.com
In The Trench

Every night I sleep,
And every night I dream
That I'm strolling with my sheep
By the old stream.

Every morn I wake,
And every morn I stand
And watch the shrapnel break
On the smashed land.

Some night I’ll fall asleep,
And will not wake at dawn.
I'll lie and feed my sheep
On a green lawn.

by Leon Gellert
[identity profile] duathir.livejournal.com

Before Action

We always had to do our work at night.
I wondered why we had to be so sly.
I wondered why we couldn’t have our fight
Under the open sky.
I wondered why I always felt so cold.
I wondered why the orders seemed so slow,
So slow to come, so whisperingly told,
So whisperingly low.
I wondered if my packing-straps were tight,
And wondered why I wondered … Sound
went wild …
An order came … I ran into the night,
Wondering why I smiled.

by Leon Gellert

[identity profile] duathir.livejournal.com

The Three Concerned

The Man

He lies forgotten 'neath the watching skies,
the blood upon his bayonet scarlet bright;
the red moon shining in his glazed eyes,
the 'Last Post' crying, crying in the night.

The Woman

She proudly sits within her home of gloom,
and reads and reads his lines with wistful smile,
then, eyes aglisten, seeks the empty room
(and he within his bloody grave the while.)

The Child

His wooden war-horse stands beside his bed,
his tiny pillow holds a head of gold.
He dreams of all the things his father said,
he dreams of all the tales his father told.

by Leon Gellert

[identity profile] duathir.livejournal.com
Rendezvous

Long before the dawn breaks
With a bird's cry,
I'll be hustling on the wind
Out where you lie -
Hurrying to our rendezvous
Under the April sky.
I'll step from out the sea again
To the shoulder of the land,
And pass the dead boy where he lies
Prone on the tideless strand,
Treading lightly lest I move
His fingers in the sand.

Do you remember how you stopped
After the sudden climb,
Sniffing the air as one who comes
On a holy thing sublime?
I'll meet you where the breeze brought
The first scent of thyme.
I'll meet you where we yearned that morn.
Under the April sky,
Waiting on our bellies there
For the battle cry.

I'll meet you where I left you there
Lying all awry.
You said, "We will continue the
Discussion by and by."
. . . . . . . .

If I could but remember what
We spoke of, you and I!

by Leon Gellert
[identity profile] duathir.livejournal.com
Red

Place that bayonet in my hand,
And fill this pouch with lead;
Show me the blood and leave me, and let me
Stand
By my dead.

Cover those staring eyes and go
And stab in the red, red rain.
Show me that blood and leave me. They groan
In the snow.
With the pain.

Cover his head with a scarlet cloak,
And run to your scarlet strife,
Show me that blood and leave me, where white
Snows choke
Out the life.

Turn his face to the sanguine skies,
The skies where the red stars move.
Show me that blood and leave me; a dead man lies
With his love.

by Leon Gellert
[identity profile] duathir.livejournal.com
War!

When my poor body died, —Alas!
I watched it topple down a hill
And sink beside a tuft of grass.
…….. I laughed like mad,
……. and laughing still
I bowed and thanked the bit of shell
That set me free and made me glad.
Then quietly,
I strolled to Hell.

by Leon Gellert

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