Sick Leave

Siegfried Sassoon 1886 (Matfield) – 1967 (Heytesbury)



When I’m asleep, dreaming and lulled and warm,—
They come, the homeless ones, the noiseless dead.
While the dim charging breakers of the storm
Bellow and drone and rumble overhead,
Out of the gloom they gather about my bed.
They whisper to my heart; their thoughts are mine.
‘Why are you here with all your watches ended?
From Ypres to Frise we sought you in the Line.’
In bitter safety I awake, unfriended;
And while the dawn begins with slashing rain
I think of the Battalion in the mud.
‘When are you going out to them again?
Are they not still your brothers through our blood?’

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Submitted on May 13, 2011

Modified on April 29, 2023

33 sec read
484

Quick analysis:

Scheme ABABBCDCBEDFD
Closest metre Iambic pentameter
Characters 599
Words 111
Stanzas 1
Stanza Lengths 13

Siegfried Sassoon

Siegfried Loraine Sassoon, CBE, MC was an eminent English poet, writer, and soldier. Decorated for bravery on the Western Front, he became one of the leading poets of the First World War. His poetry both described the horrors of the trenches, and satirised the patriotic pretensions of those who, in Sassoon's view, were responsible for a jingoism-fuelled war. He later won acclaim for his prose work, notably his three-volume fictionalised autobiography, collectively known as the "Sherston trilogy". more…

All Siegfried Sassoon poems | Siegfried Sassoon Books

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