Verse > Anthologies > Harriet Monroe, ed. > Poetry: A Magazine of Verse, 1912–22
Harriet Monroe, ed. (1860–1936).  Poetry: A Magazine of Verse.  1912–22.
To a French Aviator Fallen in Battle
By Morris Gilbert
YOU laughed and said, “A zut!”—and in a trice
Lifted Céleste in circles twice or thrice
Above the hangar-roof—and then sped on
And up, and shot away—and so were gone.
And when they found you like a wasp beside        5
The carcass of the Luftschiff, still you cried,
“A zut, mes braves!” and laughed—and then you died….
It may be best you came to ground that way;
For who knows where your vivid careless play
Of spirit and bravado might have led?        10
Some night you might have kept straight on instead,
And then at dawn perhaps, with some surprise,
Might have beheld the roofs of Paradise
Perched like Montmartre upon a little hill—
Speckless and gabled, fresh, and very still.        15
And you would twist and duck and hover down,
And circle round the walls above the town,
With saints and martyrs standing over-awed
To see you ’planing on the winds of God.
Perhaps you might come down at twelve o’clock        20
To puff a caporal and sip a bock.

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