Tuesday, 24 July 2012

On the Verge of The First World War

Now Thames is long and winds its changing way
Through wooded reach to dusky ports and gray,
Till, wearily, it strikes the Flats of Leigh,
An old life, tidal with Eternity.

But Fal is short, full, deep, and very wide,
Nor old, nor sleepy, when it meets the tide;
Through hills and groves where birds and branches sing
It runs its course of sunny wandering,
And passes, careless that it soon shall be
Lost in the old, gray mists that hide the sea.

Ah, they were good, those up-stream reaches when
Ourselves were young and dreamed of being men,
But Fal! the tide had touched us even then!
One tribal God, we bow to, thou and we,
And praise Him, Who ordained our lives should be
So early tidal with Eternity.

This poem is from the book Tell
England, by Ernest Raymond written in July 1914 on the verge of the First World War.

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