Sunday Sonnet

Memorial to the dead from the Boer War, (and others)


They that have taken wages of things done
When sense abused has blocked the doors of sense,
They that have lost their heritage of the sun,
Their laughter and their holy innocence ;
They turn them now to this thing, now to t’other,
For anchor hold against swift-eddying time,
Some to that square of earth which was their mother,
And some to noisy fame, and some to rhyme.

But I to that far morning where you stood
In fullness of the body, with your hands
Reposing on your walls, before your lands,
And all, together, making one great good :

Then did I cry ” For this my birth was meant.

These are my use, and this my sacrament I ”

Hilaire Belloc