“Sonnet VIII” by Henry William Hutchinson (1897-1918)
Hutchinson was killed in a communication trench in WWI, shot through the heart by a sniper. He was nineteen years old.
SECOND LIEUT. LEICESTERSHIRE REGT.
EXHIBITIONER OF NEW COLLEGE, OXFORD.
SONNETS AND TRANSLATIONS PRINTED BY W. H. SMITH & SON, ARDEN PRESS, STAMFORD STREET, S.E., 1918
Music by Georgia Stitt
The falling rain is music overhead,
The dark night, lit by no intruding star,
Fit covering yields to thoughts that roam afar
And turn again familiar paths to tread
Where many a laden hour too quickly sped
In happier times, before the dawn of war,
Before the spoiler had whet his sword to mar
The faithful living and the mighty dead.
It is not that my soul is weigh’d with woe,
But rather wonder, seeing they do but sleep,
As birds that in the sinking summer sweep
Across the heaven to happier climes to go,
So they are gone; and sometimes we must weep,
And sometimes, smiling, murmur, “Be it so!”