Verse > Siegfried Sassoon > Counter-Attack and Other Poems

Siegfried Sassoon (1886–1967).  Counter-Attack and Other Poems.  1918.

34. Remorse

LOST in the swamp and welter of the pit, 
He flounders off the duck-boards; only he knows 
Each flash and spouting crash,—each instant lit 
When gloom reveals the streaming rain. He goes 
Heavily, blindly on. And, while he blunders,         5
‘Could anything be worse than this?’—he wonders, 
Remembering how he saw those Germans run, 
Screaming for mercy among the stumps of trees: 
Green-faced, they dodged and darted: there was one 
Livid with terror, clutching at his knees...  10
Our chaps were sticking ’em like pigs ... ‘O hell!’ 
He thought—‘there’s things in war one dare not tell 
Poor father sitting safe at home, who reads 
Of dying heroes and their deathless deeds.’ 



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