The Best Defense

Soldier poets of the Great War (I): Eating breakfast under the flying German shells

I spent a lot of time recently reading poems from World War I, much of it new to me. Rather than discuss them all at once, I am going to feature one poem or even one line a day. 

Here is W.W. Gibson's "Breakfast":

We ate our breakfast lying on our backs,

Because the shells were screeching overhead.

I bet a rasher to a loaf of bread

That Hull United would beat Halifax

When Jimmy Stainthorp played full-back instead

Of Billy Bradford. Ginger raised his head

And cursed, and took the bet; and dropt back dead.

We ate our breakfast lying on our backs,

Because the shells were screeching overhead.

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