Achilles in the Trenches (Poem)



I saw a man this morning who did not wish to die I asked and cannot answer if otherwise wish I they broke the day this morning upon the Dardanelles the breeze boost soft the moon's cheeks were cold as cold seashells but other shells are waiting across the Aegean Sea shrapnel and high-explosive shells and hell's for me oh hello ships and cities tell of men like me Rachel second Helen why must I follow the Achilles came to Troy land and I to kata knees he turned from Roth to battle and I from three days peace was it so hard Achilles so very hard to die thou knowest and I know not so much a happier am i I will go back this morning remember also to see stand in the trench Achilles and flame caps shout for me

3 thoughts on “Achilles in the Trenches (Poem)

  1. If I might be so bold to make a request…could you perhaps do W. H Auden's 'The more loving one'?

  2. "I saw a man this morning

    Who did not wish to die

    I ask, and cannot answer,

    If otherwise wish I.

    Fair broke the day this morning

    Against the Dardanelles;

    The breeze blew soft, the morn's cheeks

    Were cold as cold sea-shells.

    But other shells are waiting

    Across the Aegean sea,

    Shrapnel and high explosive,

    Shells and hells for me.

    O hell of ships and cities,

    Hell of men like me,

    Fatal second Helen,

    Why must I follow thee?

    Achilles came to Troyland

    And I to Chersonese:

    He turned from wrath to battle,

    And I from three days' peace.

    Was it so hard, Achilles,

    So very hard to die?

    Thou knewest and I know not—

    So much the happier I.

    I will go back this morning

    From Imbros over the sea;

    Stand in the trench, Achilles,

    Flame-capped, and shout for me"

    – Patrick Shaw-Stewart, 1915

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