Verse > Anthologies > The World’s Best Poetry > Vol. VIII. National Spirit
Bliss Carman, et al., eds.  The World’s Best Poetry.
Volume VIII. National Spirit.  1904.
III. War
The Three Scars
George Walter Thornbury (1828–1876)
THIS I got on the day that Goring
Fought through York, like a wild beast roaring—
The roofs were black, and the streets were full,
The doors built up with packs of wool;
But our pikes made way through a storm of shot,        5
Barrel to barrel till locks grew hot;
Frere fell dead, and Lucas was gone,
But the drum still beat and the flag went on.
This I caught from a swinging sabre,
All I had from a long night’s labor;        10
When Chester 1 flamed, and the streets were red,
In splashing shower fell the molten lead,
The fire sprang up, and the old roof split,
The fire-ball burst in the middle of it;
With a clash and a clang the troopers they ran,        15
For the siege was over ere well began.
This I got from a pistol butt
(Lucky my head ’s not a hazel nut);
The horse they raced, and scudded and swore;
There were Leicestershire gentlemen, seventy score;        20
Up came the “Lobsters,” covered with steel—
Down we went with a stagger and reel;
Smash at the flag, I tore it to rag,
And carried it off in my foraging bag.
Note 1. Siege of Chester, in the civil war, 1645. [back]

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