Edmund Blunden (1 November 1896 – 20 January 1974 / London / England)
Report on Experience
I have been young, and now am not too old;
And I have seen the righteous forsaken,
His health, his honour and his quality taken.
This is not what we were formerly told.
I have seen a green country, useful to the race,
Knocked silly with guns and mines, its villages vanished,
Even the last rat and the last kestrel banished -
God bless us all, this was peculiar grace.
I knew Seraphina; Nature gave her hue,
Glance, sympathy, note, like one from Eden.
I saw her smile warp, heard her lyric deaden;
She turned to harlotry; - this I took to be new.
Say what you will, our God sees how they run.
These disillussionments are His curious proving
That He loves humanity and will go on loving;
Over there are faith, life, virtue in the sun.
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