Sunday, January 10, 2016

The Target -- Ivor Gurney (1919)

The poet was gassed in September 1917. He spent the rest of his life in psychiatric care.


I shot him, and it had to be
One of us 'Twas him or me.
'Couldn't be helped' and none can blame
Me, for you would do the same

My mother, she can't sleep for fear
Of what might be a-happening here
To me. Perhaps it might be best
To die, and set her fears at rest

For worst is worst, and worry's done.
Perhaps he was the only son. . .
Yet God keeps still, and does not say
A word of guidance anyway.

Well, if they get me, first I'll find
That boy, and tell him all my mind,
And see who felt the bullet worst,
And ask his pardon, if I durst.

All's a tangle. Here's my job.
A man might rave, or shout, or sob;
And God He takes no sort of heed.
This is a bloody mess indeed.





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