by Mary Gilmore (1865-1962)
He had never been born he was mine:
Since he was born he never was mine:
Only the dream is our own.
Where the world called him there he went;
When the war called him, there he bent,
Now he is dead.
He was I; bone of my bone,
Flesh of my flesh, in truth;
For his plenty I gave my own,
His drouth was my drouth.
When he laughed I was glad,
In his strength forgot I was weak,
In his joy forgot I was sad
Now there is nothing to ask or to seek;
He is dead.
I am the ball the marksman sent,
Missing the end and falling spent;
I am the arrow, sighted fair
That failed, and finds not anywhere.
He who was I is dead.
About the Author
See our page on Mary Gilmore. Includes a linked list of all her writing available on our website.