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IN WARTIME

By permission of the author

Long years I longed for them, for the young faces,
The golden hearts, that other women fold
Securely in their hands' and hearts' embraces—
I, empty-hearted with no hand to hold.
But now, but now—surely I am the one
Who sleeps in peace knowing she hath no son.


The summoning flag unfurled has stilled the aching
I lived with many years; the drum, the fife,
Bid me be glad that for their pitiless taking
I have no treasure of young golden life.
And yet, and yet—last night I lay awake,
I had no peace for other women's sake.


The flying flag shows dimly through their weeping,
But in their voices sounds the bugle's voice,
While I, with no young gold for gift or keeping,
Sit by my empty coffers and rejoice....
Not so, not so—to-night I am the one
Who cannot sleep for that she gives no son.