Thursday, April 24, 2014

2014 poem in your pocket day

in a twist from my typical poem in your pocket day posts, this year's selection comes from the book i'm currently reading, "the pacific." by hugh ambrose - and coming across it on the pages i read this morning on the way to the office!  it's "prelude" by rudyard kipling.


I have eaten your bread and salt.
I have drunk your water and wine.
In deaths ye died I have watched beside,
And the lives ye led were mine.
Was there aught that I did not share
In vigil or toil or ease, --
One joy or woe that I did not know,
Dear hearts across the seas?
I have written the tale of our life
For a sheltered people's mirth,
In jesting guise -- but ye are wise,
And ye know what the jest is worth

in the book, it was read by a marine after the fighting on peleliu and came to symbolize the different reality experienced by the combat veteran and those who only read about the experience.  kipling wrote it as the introduction to his 1890 book of poems about his experiences india and how those experiences would be perceived when the book was published in london.

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