"I knew a simple soldier boy Who grinned at life in empty joy, Slept soundly through the lonesome dark, And whistled early with the lark. In winter trenches, cowed and glum, With crumps and lice and lack of rum, He put a bullet through his brain. No one spoke of him again. * * * * * You snug-faced crowds with kindling eye Who cheer when soldier lads march by, Sneak home and pray you'll never know The hell where youth and laughter go."
(S.L. Sassoon in Suicide in the trenches)
"I dug a grave under an oak-tree. With infinite care, I stamped my spade Into the heavy grass. The sod sucked it, And I drew it out with effort, Watching the steel run liquid in the moonlight As it came clear. I stooped, and dug, and never turned, For behind me, On the dried leaves, My own face lay like a white pebble, Waiting." (Amy Lowell in Pictures from the floating world) Liège (B)
"When you are in your grave, the flowers blowing shall hang their heads and sicken in their grove. Beauty will fade and wither at your going, oh my own love, oh my own love." (M. Kennedy title unknown) Jemeppe-sur-Meuse (B)
“This quiet Dust was Gentlemen and Ladies,
And Lads and Girls;
Was laughter and ability and sighing,
And frocks and curls.”
(E. Dickinson in A Cemetery)
“We do not play on graves
because there isn’t room.
Besides it isn’t even.
It slants and people come
and put a flower on it
and hang their faces so.
We’re fearing that their hearts
will drop and crush our pretty play.
And so we move as far as enemies away,
just looking round to see
how far it is occasionally.”
(E. Dickinson in We do not play on graves)