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Best Famous Soldier Poems

Here is a collection of the all-time best famous Soldier poems. This is a select list of the best famous Soldier poetry. Reading, writing, and enjoying famous Soldier poetry (as well as classical and contemporary poems) is a great past time. These top poems are the best examples of soldier poems.

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Written by Alfred Lord Tennyson |

The Charge of the Light Brigade

Half a league, half a league, 
Half a league onward, 
All in the valley of Death 
Rode the six hundred.
"Forward, the Light Brigade! Charge for the guns!" he said: Into the valley of Death Rode the six hundred.
"Forward, the Light Brigade!" Was there a man dismayed? Not though the soldier knew Some one had blundered: Their's not to make reply, Their's not to reason why, Their's but to do and die: Into the valley of Death Rode the six hundred.
Cannon to right of them, Cannon to left of them, Cannon in front of them Volleyed and thundered; Stormed at with shot and shell, Boldly they rode and well, Into the jaws of Death, Into the mouth of Hell Rode the six hundred.
Flashed all their sabres bare, Flashed as they turned in air Sabring the gunners there, Charging an army, while All the world wondered: Plunged in the battery-smoke Right through the line they broke; Cossack and Russian Reeled from the sabre-stroke Shattered and sundered.
Then they rode back, but not, Not the six hundred.
Cannon to right of them, Cannon to left of them, Cannon behind them Volleyed and thundered; Stormed at with shot and shell, While horse and hero fell, They that had fought so well Came through the jaws of Death Back from the mouth of Hell, All that was left of them, Left of six hundred.
When can their glory fade? O the wild charge they made! All the world wondered.
Honour the charge they made! Honour the Light Brigade, Noble six hundred!

Written by Elizabeth Bishop |

This is the house of Bedlam

This is the man
that lies in the house of Bedlam.
This is the time of the tragic man that lies in the house of Bedlam.
This is a wristwatch telling the time of the talkative man that lies in the house of Bedlam.
This is a sailor wearing the watch that tells the time of the honored man that lies in the house of Bedlam.
This is the roadstead all of board reached by the sailor wearing the watch that tells the time of the old brave man that lies in the house of Bedlam.
These are the years and the walls of the ward the winds and clouds of the sea of board sailed by the sailor wearing the watch that tells the time of the cranky man that lies in the house of Bedlam.
This is a Jew in a newspaper hat that dances weeping down the ward over the creaking sea of board beyond the sailor winding his watch that tells the time of the cruel man that lies in the house of Bedlam.
This is a world of books gone flat.
This is a Jew in a newspaper hat that dances weeping down the ward over the creaking sea of board of the batty sailor that winds his watch that tells the time of the busy man that lies in the house of Bedlam.
This is a boy that pats the floor to see if the world is there is flat for the widowed Jew in the newspaper hat that dances weeping down the ward waltzing the length of a weaving board by the silent sailor that hears his watch that ticks the time of the tedious man that lies in the house of Bedlam.
These are the years and the walls and the door that shut on a boy that pats the floor to feel if the world is there and flat.
This is a Jew in a newspaper hat that dances joyfully down the ward into the parting seas of board past the staring sailor that shakes his watch that tells the time of the poet the man that lies in the house of Bedlam.
This is the soldier home from the war.
These are the years and the walls and the door that shut on a boy that pats the floorto see if the world is round or flat.
This is a Jew in a newspaper hat that dances carefully down the ward walking the plank of a coffin board with the crazy sailor that shows his watch that tells the time of the wretched man that lies in the house of Bedlam.

Written by William Shakespeare |

All the Worlds a Stage

 All the world's a stage,
And all the men and women merely players;
They have their exits and their entrances,
And one man in his time plays many parts,
His acts being seven ages.
At first, the infant, Mewling and puking in the nurse's arms.
Then the whining schoolboy, with his satchel And shining morning face, creeping like snail Unwillingly to school.
And then the lover, Sighing like furnace, with a woeful ballad Made to his mistress' eyebrow.
Then a soldier, Full of strange oaths and bearded like the pard, Jealous in honor, sudden and quick in quarrel, Seeking the bubble reputation Even in the cannon's mouth.
And then the justice, In fair round belly with good capon lined, With eyes severe and beard of formal cut, Full of wise saws and modern instances; And so he plays his part.
The sixth age shifts Into the lean and slippered pantaloon, With spectacles on nose and pouch on side; His youthful hose, well saved, a world too wide For his shrunk shank, and his big manly voice, Turning again toward childish treble, pipes And whistles in his sound.
Last scene of all, That ends this strange eventful history, Is second childishness and mere oblivion, Sans teeth, sans eyes, sans taste, sans everything.

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Written by William Cullen Bryant |

Song of Marions Men

OUR band is few but true and tried  
Our leader frank and bold; 
The British soldier trembles 
When Marion's name is told.
Our fortress is the good greenwood 5 Our tent the cypress-tree; We know the forest round us As seamen know the sea.
We know its walls of thorny vines Its glades of reedy grass 10 Its safe and silent islands Within the dark morass.
Woe to the English soldiery That little dread us near! On them shall light at midnight 15 A strange and sudden fear: When waking to their tents on fire They grasp their arms in vain And they who stand to face us Are beat to earth again; 20 And they who fly in terror deem A mighty host behind And hear the tramp of thousands Upon the hollow wind.
Then sweet the hour that brings release 25 From danger and from toil; We talk the battle over And share the battle's spoil.
The woodland rings with laugh and shout As if a hunt were up 30 And woodland flowers are gathered To crown the soldier's cup.
With merry songs we mock the wind That in the pine-top grieves And slumber long and sweetly 35 On beds of oaken leaves.
Well knows the fair and friendly moon The band that Marion leads¡ª The glitter of their rifles The scampering of their steeds.
40 'T is life to guide the fiery barb Across the moonlit plain; 'T is life to feel the night-wind That lifts his tossing mane.
A moment in the British camp¡ª 45 A moment¡ªand away Back to the pathless forest Before the peep of day.
Grave men there are by broad Santee Grave men with hoary hairs; 50 Their hearts are all with Marion For Marion are their prayers.
And lovely ladies greet our band With kindliest welcoming With smiles like those of summer 55 And tears like those of spring.
For them we wear these trusty arms And lay them down no more Till we have driven the Briton Forever from our shore.

Written by Rudyard Kipling |

Soldier Soldier

 "Soldier, soldier come from the wars,
Why don't you march with my true love?"
"We're fresh from off the ship an' 'e's maybe give the slip,
An' you'd best go look for a new love.
" New love! True love! Best go look for a new love, The dead they cannot rise, an' you'd better dry your eyes, An' you'd best go look for a new love.
"Soldier, soldier come from the wars, What did you see o' my true love?" "I seed 'im serve the Queen in a suit o' rifle-green, An' you'd best go look for a new love.
" "Soldier, soldier come from the wars, Did ye see no more o' my true love?" "I seed 'im runnin' by when the shots begun to fly -- But you'd best go look for a new love.
" "Soldier, soldier come from the wars, Did aught take 'arm to my true love?" "I couldn't see the fight, for the smoke it lay so white -- An' you'd best go look for a new love.
" "Soldier, soldier come from the wars, I'll up an' tend to my true love!" "'E's lying on the dead with a bullet through 'is 'ead, An' you'd best go look for a new love.
" "Soldier, soldier come from the wars, I'll down an' die with my true love!" "The pit we dug'll 'ide 'im an' the twenty men beside 'im -- An' you'd best go look for a new love.
" "Soldier, soldier come from the wars, Do you bring no sign from my true love?" "I bring a lock of 'air that 'e allus used to wear, An' you'd best go look for a new love.
" "Soldier, soldier come from the wars, O then I know it's true I've lost my true love!" "An' I tell you truth again -- when you've lost the feel o' pain You'd best take me for your true love.
" True love! New love! Best take 'im for a new love, The dead they cannot rise, an' you'd better dry your eyes, An' you'd best take 'im for your true love.

Written by Anne Sexton |

Daddy Warbucks

 In Memoriam

What's missing is the eyeballs
in each of us, but it doesn't matter
because you've got the bucks, the bucks, the bucks.
You let me touch them, fondle the green faces lick at their numbers and it lets you be my "Daddy!" "Daddy!" and though I fought all alone with molesters and crooks, I knew your money would save me, your courage, your "I've had considerable experience as a soldier.
fighting to win millions for myself, it's true.
But I did win," and me praying for "our men out there" just made it okay to be an orphan whose blood was no one's, whose curls were hung up on a wire machine and electrified, while you built and unbuilt intrigues called nations, and did in the bad ones, always, always, and always came at my perils, the black Christs of childhood, always came when my heart stood naked in the street and they threw apples at it or twelve-day-old-dead-fish.
"Daddy!" "Daddy," we all won that war, when you sang me the money songs Annie, Annie you sang and I knew you drove a pure gold car and put diamonds in you coke for the crunchy sound, the adorable sound and the moon too was in your portfolio, as well as the ocean with its sleepy dead.
And I was always brave, wasn't I? I never bled? I never saw a man expose himself.
I never saw a drunkard in his blubber.
I never let lightning go in one car and out the other.
And all the men out there were never to come.
Never, like a deluge, to swim over my breasts and lay their lamps in my insides.
Just me and my "Daddy" and his tempestuous bucks rolling in them like corn flakes and only the bad ones died.
But I died yesterday, "Daddy," I died, swallowing the Nazi-Jap animal and it won't get out it keeps knocking at my eyes, my big orphan eyes, kicking! Until eyeballs pop out and even my dog puts up his four feet and lets go of his military secret with his big red tongue flying up and down like yours should have as we board our velvet train.

Written by Keith Douglas |


 Three weeks gone and the combatants gone
returning over the nightmare ground
we found the place again, and found
the soldier sprawling in the sun.
The frowning barrel of his gun overshadowing.
As we came on that day, he hit my tank with one like the entry of a demon.
Here in the gunpit spoil the dishonoured picture of his girl who has put: Steffi.
in a copybook gothic script.
We see him almost with content, abased, and seeming to have paid and mocked at by his own equipment that's hard and good when he's decayed.
But she would weep to see today how on his skin the swart flies move; the dust upon the paper eye and the burst stomach like a cave.
For here the lover and killer are mingled who had one body and one heart.
And death who had the soldier singled has done the lover mortal hurt.

Written by Eugene Field |

The drum

 I'm a beautiful red, red drum,
And I train with the soldier boys;
As up the street we come,
Wonderful is our noise!
There's Tom, and Jim, and Phil,
And Dick, and Nat, and Fred,
While Widow Cutler's Bill
And I march on ahead,
With a r-r-rat-tat-tat
And a tum-titty-um-tum-tum -
Oh, there's bushels of fun in that
For boys with a little red drum!

The Injuns came last night
While the soldiers were abed,
And they gobbled a Chinese kite
And off to the woods they fled!
The woods are the cherry-trees
Down in the orchard lot,
And the soldiers are marching to seize
The booty the Injuns got.
With tum-titty-um-tum-tum, And r-r-rat-tat-tat, When soldiers marching come Injuns had better scat! Step up there, little Fred, And, Charley, have a mind! Jim is as far ahead As you two are behind! Ready with gun and sword Your valorous work to do - Yonder the Injun horde Are lying in wait for you.
And their hearts go pitapat When they hear the soldiers come With a r-r-rat-tat-tat And a tum-titty-um-tum-tum! Course it's all in play! The skulking Injun crew That hustled the kite away Are little white boys, like you! But "honest" or "just in fun," It is all the same to me; And, when the battle is won, Home once again march we With a r-r-rat-tat-tat And tum-titty-um-tum-tum; And there's glory enough in that For the boys with their little red drum!

Written by Robert William Service |

My Future

 "Let's make him a sailor," said Father,
"And he will adventure the sea.
" "A soldier," said Mother, "is rather What I would prefer him to be.
" "A lawyer," said Father, "would please me, For then he could draw up my will.
" "A doctor," said Mother, "would ease me; Maybe he could give me a pill.
" Said Father: "Lt's make him a curate, A Bishop in gaiters to be.
" Said Mother: "I couldn't endure it To have Willie preaching to me.
" Said Father: ""Let him be a poet; So often he's gathering wool.
" Said Mother with temper: "Oh stow it! You know it, a poet's a fool.
" Said Farther: "Your son is a duffer, A stupid and mischievous elf.
" Said Mother, who's rather a huffer: "That's right - he takes after yourself.
" Controlling parental emotion They turned to me, seeking a cue, And sudden conceived the bright notion To ask what I wanted to do.
Said I: "my ambition is modest: A clown in a circus I'd be, And turn somersaults in the sawdust With audience laughing at me.
" .
Poor parents! they're dead and decaying, But I am a clown as you see; And though in no circus I'm playing, How people are laughing at me!

Written by A E Housman |

The Day of Battle

 "Far I hear the bugle blow 
To call me where I would not go, 
And the guns begin the song, 
'Soldier, fly or stay for long.
' "Comrade, if to turn and fly Made a soldier never die, Fly I would, for who would not? 'Tis sure no pleasure to be shot.
"But since the man that runs away Lives to die another day, And cowards' funerals, when they come, Are not wept so well at home, "Therefore, though the best is bad, Stand and do the best, my lad; Stand and fight and see your slain, And take the bullet in your brain.

Written by Alan Seeger |


 I who, conceived beneath another star, 
Had been a prince and played with life, instead 
Have been its slave, an outcast exiled far 
From the fair things my faith has merited.
My ways have been the ways that wanderers tread And those that make romance of poverty -- Soldier, I shared the soldier's board and bed, And Joy has been a thing more oft to me Whispered by summer wind and summer sea Than known incarnate in the hours it lies All warm against our hearts and laughs into our eyes.
I know not if in risking my best days I shall leave utterly behind me here This dream that lightened me through lonesome ways And that no disappointment made less dear; Sometimes I think that, where the hilltops rear Their white entrenchments back of tangled wire, Behind the mist Death only can make clear, There, like Brunhilde ringed with flaming fire, Lies what shall ease my heart's immense desire: There, where beyond the horror and the pain Only the brave shall pass, only the strong attain.
Truth or delusion, be it as it may, Yet think it true, dear friends, for, thinking so, That thought shall nerve our sinews on the day When to the last assault our bugles blow: Reckless of pain and peril we shall go, Heads high and hearts aflame and bayonets bare, And we shall brave eternity as though Eyes looked on us in which we would seem fair -- One waited in whose presence we would wear, Even as a lover who would be well-seen, Our manhood faultless and our honor clean.

Written by Robert William Service |

His Boys

 "I'm going, Billy, old fellow.
Hist, lad! Don't make any noise.
There's Boches to beat all creation, the pitch of a bomb away.
I've fixed the note to your collar, you've got to get back to my Boys, You've got to get back to warn 'em before it's the break of day.
" The order came to go forward to a trench-line traced on the map; I knew the brass-hats had blundered, I knew and I told 'em so; I knew if I did as they ordered I would tumble into a trap, And I tried to explain, but the answer came like a pistol: "Go.
" Then I thought of the Boys I commanded -- I always called them "my Boys" -- The men of my own recruiting, the lads of my countryside; Tested in many a battle, I knew their sorrows and joys, And I loved them all like a father, with more than a father's pride.
To march my Boys to a shambles as soon as the dawn of day; To see them helplessly slaughtered, if all that I guessed was true; My Boys that trusted me blindly, I thought and I tried to pray, And then I arose and I muttered: "It's either them or it's you.
" I rose and I donned my rain-coat; I buckled my helmet tight.
I remember you watched me, Billy, as I took my cane in my hand; I vaulted over the sandbags into the pitchy night, Into the pitted valley that served us as No Man's Land.
I strode out over the hollow of hate and havoc and death, From the heights the guns were angry, with a vengeful snarling of steel; And once in a moment of stillness I heard hard panting breath, And I turned .
it was you, old rascal, following hard on my heel.
I fancy I cursed you, Billy; but not so much as I ought! And so we went forward together, till we came to the valley rim, And then a star-shell sputtered .
it was even worse than I thought, For the trench they told me to move in was packed with Boche to the brim.
They saw me too, and they got me; they peppered me till I fell; And there I scribbled my message with my life-blood ebbing away; "Now, Billy, you fat old duffer, you've got to get back like hell; And get them to cancel that order before it's the dawn of day.
"Billy, old boy, I love you, I kiss your shiny black nose; Now, home there.
Hurry, you devil, or I'll cut you to ribands.
See .
" Poor brute! he's off! and I'm dying.
I go as a soldier goes.
I'm happy.
My Boys, God bless 'em! .
It had to be them or me.

Written by Billy Collins |

On Turning Ten

 The whole idea of it makes me feel
like I'm coming down with something,
something worse than any stomach ache
or the headaches I get from reading in bad light--
a kind of measles of the spirit,
a mumps of the psyche,
a disfiguring chicken pox of the soul.
You tell me it is too early to be looking back, but that is because you have forgotten the perfect simplicity of being one and the beautiful complexity introduced by two.
But I can lie on my bed and remember every digit.
At four I was an Arabian wizard.
I could make myself invisible by drinking a glass of milk a certain way.
At seven I was a soldier, at nine a prince.
But now I am mostly at the window watching the late afternoon light.
Back then it never fell so solemnly against the side of my tree house, and my bicycle never leaned against the garage as it does today, all the dark blue speed drained out of it.
This is the beginning of sadness, I say to myself, as I walk through the universe in my sneakers.
It is time to say good-bye to my imaginary friends, time to turn the first big number.
It seems only yesterday I used to believe there was nothing under my skin but light.
If you cut me I could shine.
But now when I fall upon the sidewalks of life, I skin my knees.
I bleed.

Written by Wole Soyinka |

Civilian and Soldier

My apparition rose from the fall of lead,
Declared, 'I am a civilian.
' It only served To aggravate your fright.
For how could I Have risen, a being of this world, in that hour Of impartial death! And I thought also: nor is Your quarrel of this world.
You stood still For both eternities, and oh I heard the lesson Of your traing sessions, cautioning - Scorch earth behind you, do not leave A dubious neutral to the rear.
Reiteration Of my civilian quandary, burrowing earth From the lead festival of your more eager friends Worked the worse on your confusion, and when You brought the gun to bear on me, and death Twitched me gently in the eye, your plight And all of you came clear to me.
I hope some day Intent upon my trade of living, to be checked In stride by your apparition in a trench, Signalling, I am a soldier.
No hesitation then But I shall shoot you clean and fair With meat and bread, a gourd of wine A bunch of breasts from either arm, and that Lone question - do you friend, even now, know What it is all about?

Written by Kahlil Gibran |


 The tempest calmed after bending the branches of the trees and leaning heavily upon the grain in the field.
The stars appeared as broken remnants of lightning, but now silence prevailed over all, as if Nature's war had never been fought.
At that hour a young woman entered her chamber and knelt by her bed sobbing bitterly.
Her heart flamed with agony but she could finally open her lips and say, "Oh Lord, bring him home safely to me.
I have exhausted my tears and can offer no more, oh Lord, full of love and mercy.
My patience is drained and calamity is seeking possession of my heart.
Save him, oh Lord, from the iron paws of War; deliver him from such unmerciful Death, for he is weak, governed by the strong.
Oh Lord, save my beloved, who is Thine own son, from the foe, who is Thy foe.
Keep him from the forced pathway to Death's door; let him see me, or come and take me to him.
" Quietly a young man entered.
His head was wrapped in bandage soaked with escaping life.
He approached he with a greeting of tears and laughter, then took her hand and placed against it his flaming lips.
And with a voice with bespoke past sorrow, and joy of union, and uncertainty of her reaction, he said, "Fear me not, for I am the object of your plea.
Be glad, for Peace has carried me back safely to you, and humanity has restored what greed essayed to take from us.
Be not sad, but smile, my beloved.
Do not express bewilderment, for Love has power that dispels Death; charm that conquers the enemy.
I am your one.
Think me not a specter emerging from the House of Death to visit your Home of Beauty.
"Do not be frightened, for I am now Truth, spared from swords and fire to reveal to the people the triumph of Love over War.
I am Word uttering introduction to the play of happiness and peace.
" Then the young man became speechless and his tears spoke the language of the heart; and the angels of Joy hovered about that dwelling, and the two hearts restored the singleness which had been taken from them.
At dawn the two stood in the middle of the field contemplating the beauty of Nature injured by the tempest.
After a deep and comforting silence, the soldier said to his sweetheart, "Look at the Darkness, giving birth to the Sun.