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Base Details -- Siegfried Sassoon

Guest poem submitted by Suresh Ramasubramanian :
(Poem #385) Base Details
If I were fierce, and bald, and short of breath,
  I'd live with scarlet Majors at the Base,
And speed glum heroes up the line to death.
  You'd see me with my puffy, petulant face,
Guzzling and gulping in the best hotel,
  Reading the Roll of Honour.  'Poor young chap,'
I'd say --- 'I used to know his father well;
  Yes, we've lost heavily in this last scrap.'
And when the war is done and youth stone dead,
I'd toddle safely home and die --- in bed.
-- Siegfried Sassoon
It's the sort of poem which really catches Sassoon's mood, a jaded
contempt for the war and all it stands for.  He's struck the right note
for a John Bull sort of officer - the sort who stays behind the lines
while others (like Spender) have to do all the dirty work of dying for
their country. A refreshing change from the sort of blood and glory
patriotism you'd get in most of the romantic poets like Byron.

Suresh.

59 comments: ( or Leave a comment )

Dasmells said...

i agree, this is a moving poem which displays his great anger

John Dunham said...

Thanks. I saw a reference to this poem in another book and wanted to
use it for class I teach. You made it easy to find.

reeves-sassoon-olive said...

Hi
I'm Oliver sassoon grandson of george sassoon and great grandson of
seigfreid sassoon. If you need proof I will tell you where the houses he
left in my grandads hands are.The houses he gave him are on the isle of mull
in scotland.

Cheung Raymond said...

silly...........

jan clarke said...

If you are his grandson why cant you spell Siegfried right? huh?

Peter Corbett said...

The houses on the isle of Mull were never the property of George Sassoon's father, but the property of his mother Hester Sassoon nee Gatty so if you are indeed Siegfried's grandson you must be Kendal's progeny, and I suggest you research further into the facts.

Anonymous said...

is the name of the poem the wondering minstrels ?

Anonymous said...

Jan, why don't you use apostrophes if you are the english police!

Anonymous said...

i am doing my junior cert tommorow :( and english is up first and im preparing this poem along with a few others to do fo rmy poetry question its a great poem! very realistic...!! :D

Anonymous said...

Ive my junior cert tomorrow aswell so i'm trying to find notes on this poem!

Anonymous said...

i hav my j.c. tomorrow 2 n i really hope i get a Q on this cos i love his work XD

Anonymous said...

Ouch. Jan what you said is true. Burn.

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