Posts tagged ‘ferenc istvan dénes gyula békássy’

Saturday, 27 February 2021

1914 by Ferenc Istvan Dénes Gyula Békássy

He went without fears, went gaily, since go he must,
And drilled and sweated and sang, and rode in the heat and dust
Of the summer; his fellows were round him, as eager as he,
While over the world the gloomy days of the war dragged heavily.

He fell without a murmur in the noise of battle; found rest
‘Midst the roar of hooves on the grass, a bullet struck through his breast.
Perhaps he drowsily lay; for him alone it was still,
And the blood ran out of his body, it had taken so little to kill.

So many thousand lay round him, it would need a poet, maybe,
Or a woman, or one of his kindred, to remember that none were as he;
It would need the mother he followed, or the girl he went beside
When he walked the paths of summer in the hush of his gladness and pride,

To know that he was not a unit, a pawn whose place can be filled;
Not blood, but the beautiful years of his coming life have been spilled,
The days that should have followed, a house and a home, maybe,
For a thousand may love and marry and nest, but so shall not he.

When the fires are alight in the meadow, the stars in the sky,
And the young moon drives its cattle, the clouds graze silently,
When the cowherds answer each other and their horns sound loud and clear,
A thousand will hear them, but he, who alone understood, will not hear.

His pale poor body is weak, his heart is still, and a dream
His longing, his hope, his sadness. He dies, his full years seem
Drooping palely around, they pass with his breath
Softly, as dreams have an end – it is not a violent death.

My days and the world’s pass dully, our times are ill;
For men with labour are born, and men, without wishing it, kill.
Shadow and sunshine, twist a crown of thorns for my head!
Mourn, O my sisters! singly, for a hundred thousand dead.

From: Békássy, Ferenc; Gömöri, George; Gömöri, Mari; and Jones, Peter (eds.), The Alien in the Chapel: Ferenc Békássy, Rupert Brooke’s Unknown Rival: Poems and Letters, 2016, Skyscraper: Oxford, pp. 39-40.

(https://books.google.com.au/books/about/The_Alien_in_the_Chapel.html?id=c04fjwEACAAJ)

Date: 1914

By: Ferenc Istvan Dénes Gyula Békássy (1893-1915)