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C.D. Warner, et al., comp.
The Library of the World’s Best Literature. An Anthology in Thirty Volumes. 1917.

Miriam Teichner

Poems of the Great War: A Letter

HE wrote—the slim young lad, now two years gone—

A letter to a small Canadian town,

Telling of battles and how oft the dawn

Was torn to tattered fragments by the yell

Of bursting shrapnel, each a little hell.

He told how cool May moonlight, sifting down

On dew-soaked grass and silent trenches, came

But as a signal for a new attack.

He wrote a little of the obscene shame

Of fair white bodies crushed to muck. The black

And crimson horror stared in all he said

Until the universe seemed blurred to red.

And then—his postscript, like a bird-note clear:

“Gee, mother, you should see the violets here!”