Wednesday, September 13, 2017

THE BRAVE, a poem

IT is not the desert lonely,
     Nor at the mast-head o'er the wave,
Nor with the climbing fire ascending
     Imperiled life to save,
Nor on the battlefield, that only
     Are found the brave!

Ah, no! Unmarked, pain's passion-flowers,
     Through nights intolerably deep,
They bind in silence; mutely praying—
     Enduring, not to keep
Their watchers wearying through the hours—
     But let them sleep.

Through all the winter chill, ere morning,
     O'er many a frozen trail, I wis,
Fighting their course, that waiting children
     Life's nurture may not miss—
Against the blast they journey, scorning
     As bitter kiss.

From light-towers sending forth at even
     New hope, in place of old despair,
Toiling in mines, in factories toiling—
     But, ah! why seek, why care
To name them o'er? The brave, thank Heaven!
     Are everywhere!
"The Brave" by Florence Earle Coates. Published in Harper's Monthly Magazine (April 1915)

'Lottie' Meade
Munitions worker, London
Wikimedia Commons

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