14 November 2010
When I would muse in boyhood
I sought them far and found them,
The sure, the straight, the brave,
The hearts I lost my own to,
The souls I could not save.
They braced their belts about them,
They crossed in ships the sea,
They sought and found six feet of ground,
And there they died for me.
I prefer Housman's elegy to Binyon's because I don't think "we" remember them. Their families and comrades do, and that may be the only immortality that counts.
We, however, do right to honour them.
I have visited many Commonwealth War Cemeteries and they are one thing that our culture has done and continues to do superbly well. So many of the headstones bring tears to the eyes. I still tear up to remember one at Amiens: "To Our Hero Daddy"