Fulfilment

Was there love once? I have forgotten her.
Was there grief once? Grief yet is mine.
Other loves I have, men rough, but men who stir
More grief, more joy, than love of thee and thine.

Faces cheerful, full of whimsical mirth,
Lined by the wind, burned by the sun;
Bodies enraptured by the abounding earth,
As whose children we are brethern: one.

And any moment may descend hot death
To shatter limbs! Pulp, tear, blast
Belovèd soldiers who love rough life and breath
Not less for dying faithful to the last.

O the fading eyes, the grimed face turned bony,
Oped mouth gushing, fallen head,
Lessening pressure of a hand, shrunk, clammed and stony!
O sudden spasm, release of the dead!

Was there love once? I have forgotten her.
Was there grief once? Grief yet is mine.
O loved, living, dying, heroic soldier,
All, all my joy, my grief, my love, are thine.

by Robert Nichols

Other poems of ROBERT NICHOLS (29)

Comments (7)

love that's beautiful/////
I found a piece of his autobiography that may be of interest here: - - Nichols' First World War military service - which lasted from from 1914-16 - saw him participate in the Battle of Loos in 1915 in the role of artillery officer. His front-line service was however brief - after just a few weeks serving in the trenches he was invalided home with shell shock; an illness which caused him to be sent home to England in 1916. Subsequently serving with the British Ministry of Labour and Ministry of Information, he went on to pen war poetry that he often read to large gatherings, which included tours of the U.S. [firstworldwar.com]
A soldier whose love of his comrades and his duty has made him forget his lady love. Well written.
Such a wonderful poetry! ! Like to read again and again.
Wonderfully penned beautiful poem with rhyme and meaning. Thanks for sharing.10 points.
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