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Poetry of Joyce Kilmer
Trees and Other Poems

Memorial Day

"Dulce et decorum est"

The bugle echoes shrill and sweet,
 But not of war it sings to-day.
The road is rhythmic with the feet
 Of men-at-arms who come to pray.

The roses blossom white and red
 On tombs where weary soldiers lie;
Flags wave above the honored dead
 And martial music cleaves the sky.

Above their wreath-strewn graves we kneel,
 They kept the faith and fought the fight.
Through flying lead and crimson steel
 They plunged for Freedom and the Right.

May we, their grateful children, learn
 Their strength, who lie beneath this sod,
Who went through fire and death to earn
 At last the accolade of God.

In shining rank on rank arrayed
 They march, the legions of the Lord;
He is their Captain unafraid,
 The Prince of Peace . . . Who brought a sword.