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Devotion to Duty

 I was near the King that day.
I saw him snatch And briskly scan the G.
H.
Q.
dispatch.
Thick-voiced, he read it out.
(His face was grave.
) ‘This officer advanced with the first wave, ‘And when our first objective had been gained, ‘(Though wounded twice), reorganized the line: ‘The spirit of the troops was by his fine ‘Example most effectively sustained.
’ He gripped his beard; then closed his eyes and said, ‘Bathsheba must be warned that he is dead.
‘Send for her.
I will be the first to tell ‘This wife how her heroic husband fell.

by Siegfried Sassoon
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