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ON THE IDLE HILL OF SUMMER

On the idle hill of summer,
Sleepy with the flow of streams,
Far I hear the steady drummer
Drumming like a noise in dreams,


Far and near and low and louder
On the roads of earth go by,
Dear to friends and food for powder,
Soldiers marching, all to die.

East and west on fields forgotten
Bleach and bones of comrades slain,
Lovely lads and dead and rotten;
None that go return again.

Far the calling bulges hollo,
High the screaming fife replies,
Gay the files of scarlet follow:
Woman bore me, I will rise.


By A. E. Housman

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