Prose & Poetry - The Muse in Arms - Optimism

"Optimism" by A.V. Ratcliffe First published in London in November 1917 and reprinted in February 1918 The Muse in Arms comprised, in the words of editor E. B. Osborne:

"A collection of war poems, for the most part written in the field of action, by seamen, soldiers, and flying men who are serving, or have served, in the Great War".

Below is one of eleven poems featured within The Future Hope section of the collection.

You can access other poems within the section via the sidebar to the right.

by A.V. Ratcliffe

At last there'll dawn the last of the long year,
Of the long year that seemed to dream no end;
Whose every dawn but turned the world more drear
And slew some hope, or led away some friend.
Or be you dark, or buffeting, or blind,
We care not, Day, but leave not death behind.

The hours that feed on war go heavy-hearted:
Death is no fare wherewith to make hearts fain;
Oh! We are sick to find that they who started
With glamour in their eyes come not again.
O Day, be long and heavy if you will,
But on our hopes set not a bitter heel.

For tiny hopes, like tiny flowers of spring,
Will come, though death and ruin hold the land;
Though storms may roar they may not break the wing
Of the earthed lark whose song is ever bland.
Fell year unpitiful, slow days of scorn,
Your kind shall die, and sweeter days be born.

A "blimp" was a word applied to an observation balloon.

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Muse in Arms

The Future Hope