Prose & Poetry - Edward Thomas
Edward Thomas (1878-1917) was 37 when he enlisted in 1915; unlike many of the war poets he had a wife and two children when he decided he could no longer sit out the war.
Thomas was a professional reviewer and editor, but it was not until his friend Robert Frost encouraged him that he began writing poetry.
Like Frost, many of his poems - even those dealing with his war experiences - are based on his love of nature and his feeling for the English countryside.
He was killed the day after Easter in 1917.
The Cherry Trees
The cherry trees bend over and are shedding,
On the old road where all that passed are dead,
Their petals, strewing the grass as for a wedding
This early May morn when there is none to wed.
In Memoriam (Easter, 1915)
The flowers left thick at nightfall in the wood
This Eastertide call into mind the men,
Now far from home, who, with their sweethearts, should
Have gathered them and will do never again.
The Russian war ace Alexander Kozakov claimed 20 victories during the war; his nearest compatriot, Vasili Yanchenko, claimed 16.
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