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Famous Short War Poems. Short War Poetry by Famous Poets

Famous Short War Poems. Short War Poetry by Famous Poets. A collection of the all-time best War short poems

See also: Best Famous Short Poems | Short Member Poems | Best Short Member Poems | Top 100 Famous Short Poems

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by Robert Herrick

PARDONS

 Those ends in war the best contentment bring,
Whose peace is made up with a pardoning.


by Stevie Smith

My Heart Was Full

 My heart was full of softening showers,
I used to swing like this for hours,
I did not care for war or death,
I was glad to draw my breath.


by Roger McGough

Survivor

 Everyday,
I think about dying.
About disease, starvation,
violence, terrorism, war,
the end of the world.

It helps
keep my mind off things.


by Stephen Crane

Tell brave deeds of war.

 "Tell brave deeds of war."

Then they recounted tales, --
"There were stern stands
And bitter runs for glory."

Ah, I think there were braver deeds.


by Henry Van Dyke

The Price of Peace

 Peace without Justice is a low estate,--
A coward cringing to an iron Fate!
But Peace through Justice is the great ideal,--
We'll pay the price of war to make it real.


by Walt Whitman

Lessons.

 THERE are who teach only the sweet lessons of peace and safety; 
But I teach lessons of war and death to those I love, 
That they readily meet invasions, when they come.


by Henry Van Dyke

The Statue of Sherman by St. Gaudens

 This is the soldier brave enough to tell 
The glory-dazzled world that `war is hell': 
Lover of peace, he looks beyond the strife, 
And rides through hell to save his country's life.


by Emily Dickinson

Theres the Battle of Burgoyne --

 There's the Battle of Burgoyne --
Over, every Day,
By the Time that Man and Beast
Put their work away
"Sunset" sounds majestic --
But that solemn War
Could you comprehend it
You would chastened stare --


by Li Po

Under the Moon

 Under the crescent moon's faint glow
The washerman's bat resounds afar,
And the autumn breeze sighs tenderly.
But my heart has gone to the Tartar war,
To bleak Kansuh and the steppes of snow,
Calling my husband back to me.


by Emily Dickinson

Twas fighting for his Life he was --

 'Twas fighting for his Life he was --
That sort accomplish well --
The Ordnance of Vitality
Is frugal of its Ball.

It aims once -- kills once -- conquers once --
There is no second War
In that Campaign inscrutable
Of the Interior.


by Emily Dickinson

Tis Seasons since the Dimpled War

 'Tis Seasons since the Dimpled War
In which we each were Conqueror
And each of us were slain
And Centuries 'twill be and more
Another Massacre before
So modest and so vain --
Without a Formula we fought
Each was to each the Pink Redoubt --


by Carl Sandburg

Old Osawatomie

 JOHN BROWN’S body under the morning stars.
Six feet of dust under the morning stars.
And a panorama of war performs itself
Over the six-foot stage of circling armies.
Room for Gettysburg, Wilderness, Chickamauga,
On a six-foot stage of dust.


by Paul Laurence Dunbar

The Unlucky Apple

 'Twas the apple that in Eden 
Caused our father's primal fall; 
And the Trojan War, remember -- 
'Twas an apple caused it all. 
So for weeks I've hesitated, 
You can guess the reason why, 
For I want to tell my darling 
She's the apple of my eye.


by William Butler Yeats

On Being Asked For A War Poem

 I think it better that in times like these
A poet's mouth be silent, for in truth
We have no gift to set a statesman right;
He has had enough of medding who can please
A young girl in the indolence of her youth,
Or an old man upon a winter's night.


by Robert William Service

Les Grands Mutiles

 I saw three wounded of the war:
And the first had lost his eyes;
And the second went on wheels and had
No legs below the thighs;
And the face of the third was featureless,
And his mouth ran cornerwise.
So I made a rhyme about each one,
And this is how my fancies run.


by Carl Sandburg

Panels

 THE WEST window is a panel of marching onions.
Five new lilacs nod to the wind and fence boards.
The rain dry fence boards, the stained knot holes, heliograph a peace.
(How long ago the knee drifts here and a blizzard howling at the knot holes, whistling winter war drums?)


by Stephen Crane

There was crimson clash of war.

 There was crimson clash of war.
Lands turned black and bare;
Women wept;
Babes ran, wondering.
There came one who understood not these things.
He said, "Why is this?"
Whereupon a million strove to answer him.
There was such intricate clamour of tongues,
That still the reason was not.


by William Carlos (WCW) Williams

Item

 This, with a face
like a mashed blood orange
that suddenly

would get eyes
and look up and scream
War! War!

clutching her
thick, ragged coat
a piece of hat

broken shoes
War! War!
stumbling for dread

at the young men
who with their gun-butts
shove her

sprawling—
a note
at the foot of the page.


by Stephen Crane

It was wrong to do this said the angel

 "It was wrong to do this," said the angel.
"You should live like a flower,
Holding malice like a puppy,
Waging war like a lambkin."

"Not so," quoth the man
Who had no fear of spirits;
"It is only wrong for angels
Who can live like the flowers,
Holding malice like the puppies,
Waging war like the lambkins."


by Carl Sandburg

Smoke

 I SIT in a chair and read the newspapers.

Millions of men go to war, acres of them are buried, guns and ships broken, cities burned, villages sent up in smoke, and children where cows are killed off amid hoarse barbecues vanish like finger-rings of smoke in a north wind.

I sit in a chair and read the newspapers.


by Yehuda Amichai

The Little Park Planted

 The little park planted in memory of a boy
who fell in the war begins 
to resemble him
as he was twenty eight years ago.
Year by year they look more alike.
His old parents come almost daily
to sit on a bench
and look at him.

And every night the memory in the garden
hums like a little motor.
During the day you can't hear it.


by Percy Bysshe Shelley

Poetical Essay

 Extract from Poetical Essay by Percy Bysshe Shelley


Millions to fight compell'd, to fight or die
In mangled heaps on War's red altar lie . . . 
When the legal murders swell the lists of pride;
When glory's views the titled idiot guide


Lost Shelley poem found after 200 years
http://www.timesonline.co.uk/article/0,,2-2267433,00.html


by Robert Burns

509. Song—Fragment—There was a Bonie Lass

 THERE was a bonie lass, and a bonie, bonie lass,
 And she lo’ed her bonie laddie dear;
Till War’s loud alarms tore her laddie frae her arms,
 Wi’ mony a sigh and tear.
Over sea, over shore, where the cannons loudly roar,
 He still was a stranger to fear;
And nocht could him quail, or his bosom assail,
 But the bonie lass he lo’ed sae dear.


by John Clare

What Is Life?

 Resembles Life what once was held of Light,
Too ample in itself for human sight ?
An absolute Self--an element ungrounded--
All, that we see, all colours of all shade
[Image]By encroach of darkness made ?--
Is very life by consciousness unbounded ?
And all the thoughts, pains, joys of mortal breath,
A war-embrace of wrestling Life and Death ?


by Thomas Hardy

In Time Of The Breaking Of Nations

 I
Only a man harrowing clods
In a slow silent walk
With an old horse that stumbles and nods
Half asleep as they stalk.

 II
Only thin smoke without flame
From the heaps of couch-grass;
Yet this will go onwards the same
Though Dynasties pass.

 III
Yonder a maid and her wight
Go whispering by:
War's annals will cloud into night
Ere their story die.


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