Get Your Premium Membership

Siegfried Sassoon Poems

A collection of select Siegfried Sassoon famous poems that were written by Siegfried Sassoon or written about the poet by other famous poets. PoetrySoup is a comprehensive educational resource of the greatest poems and poets on history.

Don't forget to view our Siegfried Sassoon home page with links to biographical information, articles, and more poems that may not be listed here.

See also:

by Sassoon, Siegfried
 For Morn, my dome of blue, 
For Meadows, green and gay, 
And Birds who love the twilight of the leaves, 
Let Jesus keep me joyful when I pray. 

For the big Bees that hum
And hide in bells of flowers; 
For the winding roads that come 
To Evening’s holy door, 
May Jesus bring me grateful to his arms, 
And guard...Read More

by Sassoon, Siegfried
 (To Robert Graves) 


Here I'm sitting in the gloom 
Of my quiet attic room. 
France goes rolling all around, 
Fledged with forest May has crowned. 
And I puff my pipe, calm-hearted, 
Thinking how the fighting started, 
Wondering when we'll ever end it, 
Back to hell with Kaiser sent it, 
Gag the noise, pack up and go, 
Clockwork soldiers...Read More

by Sassoon, Siegfried
 There stood a Poplar, tall and straight; 
The fair, round Moon, uprisen late, 
Made the long shadow on the grass 
A ghostly bridge ’twixt heaven and me. 
But May, with slumbrous nights, must pass;
And blustering winds will strip the tree. 
And I’ve no magic to express 
The moment of that loveliness; 
So from these words you’ll never guess 
The...Read More

by Sassoon, Siegfried
 He turned to me with his kind, sleepy gaze 
And fresh face slowly brightening to the grin 
That sets my memory back to summer days, 
With twenty runs to make, and last man in. 
He told me he’d been having a bloody time
In trenches, crouching for the crumps to burst, 
While squeaking rats scampered across the slime 
And the...Read More

by Sassoon, Siegfried
WHEN Watkin shifts the burden of his cares
And all that irked him in his bound employ 
Once more become a vagrom-hearted boy 
He moves to roundelays and jocund airs;
Loitering with dusty harvestmen he shares 5
Old ale and sunshine; or with maids half-coy 
Pays court to shadows; fools himself with joy 
Shaking a leg at junketings and fairs.

Sometimes returning down his...Read More

by Sassoon, Siegfried
 The anguish of the earth absolves our eyes 
Till beauty shines in all that we can see. 
War is our scourge; yet war has made us wise, 
And, fighting for our freedom, we are free. 

Horror of wounds and anger at the foe, 
And loss of things desired; all these must pass. 
We are the happy legion, for we...Read More

by Sassoon, Siegfried
 October's bellowing anger breaks and cleaves 
The bronzed battalions of the stricken wood 
In whose lament I hear a voice that grieves 
For battle’s fruitless harvest, and the feud 
Of outraged men. Their lives are like the leaves
Scattered in flocks of ruin, tossed and blown 
Along the westering furnace flaring red. 
O martyred youth and manhood overthrown, 
The burden...Read More

by Sassoon, Siegfried
 There seemed a smell of autumn in the air 
At the bleak end of night; he shivered there 
In a dank, musty dug-out where he lay, 
Legs wrapped in sand-bags,—lumps of chalk and clay 
Spattering his face. Dry-mouthed, he thought, ‘To-day
We start the damned attack; and, Lord knows why, 
Zero’s at nine; how bloody if I’m done in 
Under...Read More

by Sassoon, Siegfried
 Soldiers are citizens of death's gray land,
Drawing no dividend from time's to-morrows.
In the great hour of destiny they stand,
Each with his feuds, and jealousies, and sorrows.
Soldiers are sworn to action; they must win
Some flaming, fatal climax with their lives.
Soldiers are dreamers; when the guns begin
They think of firelit homes, clean beds, and wives.

I see them in foul dug-outs, gnawed...Read More

by Sassoon, Siegfried
 Voices moving about in the quiet house: 
Thud of feet and a muffled shutting of doors: 
Everyone yawning. Only the clocks are alert. 

Out in the night there’s autumn-smelling gloom 
Crowded with whispering trees; across the park
A hollow cry of hounds like lonely bells: 
And I know that the clouds are moving across the moon; 
The low, red, rising...Read More

by Sassoon, Siegfried
EVENING was in the wood, louring with storm. 
A time of drought had sucked the weedy pool 
And baked the channels; birds had done with song. 
Thirst was a dream of fountains in the moon, 
Or willow-music blown across the water 5 
Leisurely sliding on by weir and mill. 

Uneasy was the man who wandered, brooding, 
His face a little...Read More

by Sassoon, Siegfried
 In the grey summer garden I shall find you 
With day-break and the morning hills behind you. 
There will be rain-wet roses; stir of wings; 
And down the wood a thrush that wakes and sings. 
Not from the past you’ll come, but from that deep
Where beauty murmurs to the soul asleep: 
And I shall know the sense of life...Read More

by Sassoon, Siegfried
 I found him in the guard-room at the Base. 
From the blind darkness I had heard his crying 
And blundered in. With puzzled, patient face 
A sergeant watched him; it was no good trying 
To stop it; for he howled and beat his chest.
And, all because his brother had gone west, 
Raved at the bleeding war; his rampant grief...Read More

by Sassoon, Siegfried
ALONG the wind-swept platform pinched and white 
The travellers stand in pools of wintry light 
Offering themselves to morn¡¯s long slanting arrows.
The train¡¯s due; porters trundle laden barrows.
The train steams in volleying resplendent clouds 5
Of sun-blown vapour. Hither and about 
Scared people hurry storming the doors in crowds.
The officials seem to waken with a shout 
Resolved to hoist and plunder;...Read More

by Sassoon, Siegfried
YE hooded witches baleful shapes that moan 
Quench your fantastic lanterns and be still;
For now the moon through heaven sails alone 
Shedding her peaceful rays from hill to hill.
The faun from out his dim and secret place 5
Draws nigh the darkling pool and from his dream
Half-wakens seeing there his sylvan face
Reflected and the wistful eyes that gleam.

To his cold lips...Read More

by Sassoon, Siegfried
ACROSS the land a faint blue veil of mist
Seems hung; the woods wear yet arrayment sober
Till frost shall make them flame; silent and whist
The drooping cherry orchards of October
Like mournful pennons hang their shrivelling leaves 5
Russet and orange: all things now decay;
Long since ye garnered in your autumn sheaves 
And sad the robins pipe at set of day.

Now do ye...Read More

by Sassoon, Siegfried
CRY out on Time that he may take away
Your cold philosophies that give no hint
Of spirit-quickened flesh; fall down and pray
That Death come never with a face of flint:
Death is our heritage; with Life we share 5
The sunlight that must own his darkening hour:
Within his very presence yet we dare
To gather gladness like a fading flower.

For even as this our...Read More

by Sassoon, Siegfried
 I never asked you to be perfect—did I?— 
Though often I’ve called you sweet, in the invasion 
Of mastering love. I never prayed that you 
Might stand, unsoiled, angelic and inhuman, 
Pointing the way toward Sainthood like a sign-post. 

Oh yes, I know the way to heaven was easy. 
We found the little kingdom of our passion 
That all...Read More

by Sassoon, Siegfried
 I’ve never ceased to curse the day I signed 
A seven years’ bargain for the Golden Fleece. 
’Twas a bad deal all round; and dear enough 
It cost me, what with my daft management, 
And the mean folk as owed and never paid me, 
And backing losers; and the local bucks 
Egging me on with whiskys while I bragged...Read More

by Sassoon, Siegfried
 He primmed his loose red mouth and leaned his head 
Against a sorrowing angel’s breast, and said: 
‘You’d think so much bereavement would have made 
‘Unusual big demands upon my trade. 
‘The War comes cruel hard on some poor folk;
‘Unless the fighting stops I’ll soon be broke.’ 

He eyed the Cemetery across the road. 
‘There’s scores of bodies out...Read More