Prose & Poetry - The Muse in Arms - Reconnaissance

"Reconnaissance" by Gordon Alchin 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 eight poems featured within the War in the Air section of the collection.  You can access other poems within the section via the sidebar to the right.

by Gordon Alchin

I journeyed to the east,
Rolled on the surgent airs of autumn days:
Below, the earth lay creased
With myriad meadows in the morning haze.
Far off, where lay the sea,
A silvered mirror beckoned to my bent,
And, moving orderly,
The high cloud-armies marched magnificent.

Some menace in the sky,
Some quick alarm did wake me as I sped:
At once, unwarningly
Streamed out repeated death, from one that fled
Headlong before my turn -
But, unavoiding of the answering blast,
Checked sudden, fell astern -
And unmolested fared I to the last.

Battle Police were military policemen deployed behind an attack to intercept stragglers.

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