Wednesday, June 29, 2016

Come Laughing Home at Twilight - Beaumont Hamel, 1916

Lawrence Hall

Come Laughing Home at Twilight

Beaumont-Hamel, 1916

And, O! Wasn’t he just the Jack the Lad,
A’swellin’ down the Water Street as if –
As if he owned the very paving stones!
He was my beautiful boy, and, sure,
The girls they thought so too: his eyes, his walk;
A man of Newfoundland, my small big man,
Just seventeen, but strong and bold and sure.

Where is he now? Can you tell me? Can you?

Don’t tell me he was England’s finest, no –
He was my finest, him and his Da,
His Da, who breathed in sorrow, and was lost,
They say, lost in the fog, among the ice.
But no, he too was killed on the first of July
Only it took him months to cast away,
And drift away, far away, in the mist.

Where is he now? Can you tell me? Can you?

I need no Kings nor no Kaisers, no,
Nor no statues with fine words writ on’em,
Nor no flags nor no Last Post today:
I only want to see my men come home,
Come laughing home at twilight, boots all mucky,
An’ me fussin’ at ‘em for being’ late,
Come laughing home at twilight.

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