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Thread: Siegfried Sassoon: Atrocities (1919)

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    Senior Member Phlegethon's Avatar
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    Post Siegfried Sassoon: Atrocities (1919)

    Atrocities

    You told me, in your drunken-boasting mood,
    How once you butchered prisoners. That was good!
    I'm sure you felt no pity while they stood
    Patient and cowed and scared, as prisoners should.

    How did you do them in? Come, don't be shy:
    You know I love to hear how Germans die,
    Downstairs in dug-outs. "Camerad!" they cry;
    Then squeal like stoats when bombs begin to fly.

    . . .

    And you? I know your record. You went sick
    When orders looked unwholesome: then, with trick
    And lie, you wangled home. And here you are,
    Still talking big and boozing in a bar.


    - Siegfried Sassoon, 1919
    And all my youth passed by sad-hearted,
    the joy of Spring was never mine;
    Autumn blows through me dread of parting,
    and my heart dreams and longs to die.

    - Nikolaus Lenau (1802-1850)

    Real misanthropes are not found in solitude, but in the world; since it is experience of life, and not philosophy, which produces real hatred of mankind.

    - Giacomo Leopardi (1798-1837)

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    Senior Member Phlegethon's Avatar
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    Post Siegfried Sassoon: To the Warmongers (1917)

    To the Warmongers

    I'm back again from hell
    With loathsome thoughts to sell;
    Secrets of death to tell;
    And horrors from the abyss.
    Young faces bleared with blood,
    Sucked down into the ***,
    You shall hear things like this,
    Till the tormented slain
    Crawl round and once again,
    With limbs that twist awry
    Moan out their brutish pain,
    As the fighters pass them by.
    For you our battles shine
    With triumph half-divine;
    And the glory of the dead
    Kindles in each proud eye.
    But a curse is on my head,
    That shall not be unsaid,
    And the wounds in my heart are red,
    For I have watched them die.


    -- Siegfried Sassoon, 1917
    And all my youth passed by sad-hearted,
    the joy of Spring was never mine;
    Autumn blows through me dread of parting,
    and my heart dreams and longs to die.

    - Nikolaus Lenau (1802-1850)

    Real misanthropes are not found in solitude, but in the world; since it is experience of life, and not philosophy, which produces real hatred of mankind.

    - Giacomo Leopardi (1798-1837)

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