Prose & Poetry - War Poetry of S J Robinson - Visit To Menin

The Menin Gate in 1927 Reproduced within this area of the site are present-day First World War poems written by S. J. Robinson.

Click here for an introduction to the poems.

Visit to Menin

 "Mother, what's that gate for?
It's stone, and big, and strong.
It's got so many names on -
The list is very long.
On top of it's a lion
And beneath the arch does play
A man upon a bugle -
So sad - What does it say?
That tune, it makes me shiver
And read those names once more.
O Mother, please do tell me:
What is that big gate for?"

"I'll tell you what that gate's for,"
Mother thoughtfully replied.
"It's a monument to your daddy
And all his mates who died.
Some, well, they couldn't find them
See - those are all their names -
Came up this road to go to war,
And ne'er came home again.
They fought and died like Daddy
So many, many more.
And so we don't forget them,
That's what that big gate's for."

A 'whizzbang' was a high-velocity, low-trajectory shell that made a shrill approach noise and then a sharp explosive report.

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