Anthem for Dead Youth
What passing bells for you who die in herds?
- Only the monstrous anger of the guns!
- Only the stuttering rifles' rattled words
Can patter out your hasty orisons
No chants for you, nor balms, nor wreaths, nor bells,
Nor any voice of mourning, save the choirs,
And long-drawn sighs of wailing shells;
The shrill, demented choirs
And bugles calling for you from sad shires.
What candles may we hold to speed you all?
Not in the hands of boys, but in their eyes
Shall shine the holy glimmers of good-byes.
The pallor of girls' brows must be your pall.
Your flowers, the tenderness of comrades' minds,
And each slow dusk, a drawing-down of blinds.