That I remember those who are
not able to remember,
who in the morning of their lives
did not reach that November.
That I might feel that their fresh blood
was not dispersed in vain,
responding to commands to fight
in Flander’s mud and rain.
That I will bear the guilt of men
who breathe another day
in knowledge that their love will last
to pardon what I say.
That they shall rise beyond my death
and join the sun with prayer
and speak anew in a new world
for ever young and fair:
I stand and wait for this to pass –
two minutes by void tomb –
with emptied thoughts and filled up heart
in winter’s piercing gloom.
And that in slow age it should end;
is this what I deserve,
defined by steel and guts of war,
made godlike if I serve?