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Famous Army Poems by Famous Poets

These are examples of famous Army poems written by some of the greatest and most-well-known modern and classical poets. PoetrySoup is a great educational poetry resource of famous army poems. These examples illustrate what a famous army poem looks like and its form, scheme, or style (where appropriate).

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by Lehman, David
...he felt he had to share that burden.
With his gift for codes and ciphers, he joined the counter-
 terrorism unit of army intelligence.
Contrary to what the spook novels say, he found it possible to
 avoid betraying either his country or his lover.
This was the life: strange bedrooms, the perfume of other men's
As a spy he has a unique mission: to get his name on the front 
 page of the nation's newspaper of record. Only by doing that 
 would he get...Read More

by Ginsberg, Allen
...ision set. 
America is this correct? 
I'd better get right down to the job. 
It's true I don't want to join the Army or turn lathes 
 in precision parts factories, I'm nearsighted and 
 psychopathic anyway. 
America I'm putting my ***** shoulder to the wheel. 

 Berkeley, January 17, 1956...Read More

by Whitman, Walt
...year of
 Independence, sign’d by the Commissioners, ratified by The States, and read by
 at the head of the army? 
Have you possess’d yourself of the Federal Constitution? 
Do you see who have left all feudal processes and poems behind them, and assumed the poems
 processes of Democracy? 
Are you faithful to things? do you teach as the land and sea, the bodies of men,
 amativeness, angers, teach?
Have you sped through fleeting customs, popularitie...Read More

by Aldington, Richard

And on Sundays they rang the bells, 
From Baptist and Evangelical and Catholic churches. 
They had a Salvation Army. 
I was taken to a High Church; 
The parson's name was Mowbray, 
"Which is a good name but he thinks too much of it --" 
That's what I heard people say. 

I took a little black book 
To that cold, grey, damp, smelling church, 
And I had to sit on a hard bench, 
Wriggle off it to kneel down when they sang psalms 
And wriggle off it to kneel down ...Read More

by Coleridge, Samuel Taylor
...ittle door she opened straight,
All in the middle of the gate;
The gate that was ironed within and without,
Where an army in battle array had marched out.
The lady sank, belike through pain,
And Christabel with might and main
Lifted her up, a weary weight,
Over the threshold of the gate:
Then the lady rose again,
And moved, as she were not in pain.

So, free from danger, free from fear,
They crossed the court: right glad they were.
And Christabel devo...Read More

by Wilcox, Ella Wheeler
...en and the spotless wife) 
From immemorial time has man laid down his life.


And now brave Custer's valiant army pressed
Across the dangerous desert of the West, 
To rescue fair white captives from the hands
Of brutal Cheyenne and Comanche bands, 
On Washita's bleak banks. Nine hundred strong
It moved its slow determined way along, 
Past frontier homes left dark and desolate
By the wild Indians' fierce and unrelenting hate; 


Past forts where ranchmen...Read More

by Pinsky, Robert
...ago. The moved old people
Applauded wildly, and the speaker's friend
Whispered to the journalist, "It's the Belgian Army

Joke come to life." I wish I could tell it
To Elliot. In the Belgian Army, the feud
Between the Flemings and Walloons grew vicious,

So out of hand the army could barely function.
Finally one commander assembled his men
In one great room, to deal with things directly.

They stood before him at attention. "All Flemings,"
He ordered, ...Read More

by Marvell, Andrew
Each thinks his person represents the whole, 
And with that thought does multiply his soul, 
Believes himself an army, theirs, one man 
As easily conquered, and believing can, 
With heart of bees so full, and head of mites, 
That each, though duelling, a battle fights. 
Such once Orlando, famous in romance, 
Broached whole brigades like larks upon his lance. 

But strength at last still under number bows, 
And the faint sweat trickled down Temple's brows. 
...Read More

by Milton, John
...couldst thou faithful add? O name, 
O sacred name of faithfulness profaned! 
Faithful to whom? to thy rebellious crew? 
Army of Fiends, fit body to fit head. 
Was this your discipline and faith engaged, 
Your military obedience, to dissolve 
Allegiance to the acknowledged Power supreme? 
And thou, sly hypocrite, who now wouldst seem 
Patron of liberty, who more than thou 
Once fawned, and cringed, and servily adored 
Heaven's awful Monarch? wherefore, but in hope 
To disp...Read More

by Milton, John walk'd thir streets,
None offering fight; who single combatant
Duell'd thir Armies rank't in proud array,
Himself an Army, now unequal match
To save himself against a coward arm'd
At one spears length. O ever failing trust
In mortal strength! and oh what not in man
Deceivable and vain! Nay what thing good 
Pray'd for, but often proves our woe, our bane?
I pray'd for Children, and thought barrenness
In wedlock a reproach; I gain'd a Son,
And such a Son as all Men hail'd...Read More

by Whitman, Walt
..., to question it never daring, 
To ages, and ages yet, the growth of the seed leaving, 
To troops out of me, out of the army, the war arising—they the tasks I have set
To women certain whispers of myself bequeathing—their affection me more clearly
To young men my problems offering—no dallier I—I the muscle of their brains
So I pass—a little time vocal, visible, contrary; 
Afterward, a melodious echo, passionately bent for—(death making me ...Read More

by Chesterton, G K
...ou should not die with Uther
And Arthur and Lancelot?

"But when you win you brag and blow,
And when you lose you rail,
Army of eastland yokels
Not strong enough to fail."

"I bring not boast or railing,"
Spake Alfred not in ire,
"I bring of Our Lady a lesson set,
This--that the sky grows darker yet
And the sea rises higher."

Then Colan of the Sacred Tree
Tossed his black mane on high,
And cried, as rigidly he rose,
"And if the sea and sky be foes,
We will tame the s...Read More

by Tennyson, Alfred Lord

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 ...Read More

by Wordsworth, William frame,  When the dark streets appeared to heave and gape,  While like a sea the storming army came,  And Fire from hell reared his gigantic shape,  And Murder, by the ghastly gleam, and Rape  Seized their joint prey, the mother and the child!  But from these crazing thoughts my brain, escape!  —For weeks the balmy air breathed soft and mild,  And on the gliding v...Read More

by Levine, Philip
...On March 1, 1958, four deserters from the French Army of North Africa, 
August Rein, Henri Bruette, Jack Dauville, & Thomas Delain, robbed a 
government pay station at Orleansville. Because of the subsequent 
confession of Dauville the other three were captured or shot. Dauville 
was given his freedom and returned to the land of his birth, the U.S.A.

from a last camp near...Read More

by Pope, Alexander
...monds, Hearts, in wild Disorder seen,
With Throngs promiscuous strow the level Green. 
Thus when dispers'd a routed Army runs,
Of Asia's Troops, and Africk's Sable Sons,
With like Confusion different Nations fly,
In various habits and of various Dye,
The pierc'd Battalions dis-united fall,
In Heaps on Heaps; one Fate o'erwhelms them all.

The Knave of Diamonds now tries his wily Arts,
And wins (oh shameful Chance!) the Queen of Hearts.
At this, the Blood the Virgi...Read More

by Eliot, T S (Thomas Stearns)
...said, I swear, I can't bear to look at you.
And no more can't I, I said, and think of poor Albert,
He's been in the army four years, he wants a good time,
And if you don't give it him, there's others will, I said.
Oh is there, she said. Something o' that, I said. 
Then I'll know who to thank, she said, and give me a straight look.
If you don't like it you can get on with it, I said.
Others can pick and choose if you can't.
...Read More

by Miller, Alice Duer
Ivy climbing to the clustered chimneys, 
Rustling in the wet south breeze. 
Gardens trampled down by Cromwell's army, 
Orchards of apple-trees and pears, 
Casements that had looked for the Armada, 
And a ghost on the stairs. 

Johnnie's mother, the Lady Jean, 
Child of a penniless Scottish peer, 
Was handsome, worn high-coloured, lean, 
With eyes like Johnnie's—more blue and clear— 
Like bubbles of glass in her fine tanned face. 
Quiet, she was, and so at ...Read More

by Akhmatova, Anna
...u will not find.

May your spirit be still an peaceful,
There will be no losses now:
He is new warrior of God's army,
Do not be about him in sorrow.

In the dear, beloved home
It's sinful to cry and feel blue.
Think, now you can make prayer
To the man who stood up for you.

x x x

Did for this, and for this only,
In my arms I carry you,
Did for this the strength flash
In your gorgeous eyes of blue?
Tall and elegant you have grown,
You ...Read More

by Wordsworth, William with the strongest;
The cattle are grazing,
Their heads never raising;
 There are forty feeding like one!

Like an army defeated
The snow hath retreated,
And now doth fare ill
On the top of the bare hill;
 The plowboy is whooping—anon-anon:
There's joy in the mountains;
There's life in the fountains;
Small clouds are sailing,
Blue sky prevailing;
 The rain is over and gone!...Read More

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