Verse > Anthologies > George Herbert Clarke, ed. > A Treasury of War Poetry
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George Herbert Clarke, ed. (1873–1953).  A Treasury of War Poetry.  1917.
 
74. The Virgin of Albert
 
Notre Dame de Brebières
 
By George Herbert Clarke
 
 
SHYLY expectant, gazing up at Her,
  They linger, Gaul and Briton, side by side:
  Death they know well, for daily have they died,
Spending their boyhood ever bravelier;
They wait: here is no priest or chorister,        5
  Birds skirt the stricken tower, terrified;
  Desolate, empty, is the Eastertide,
Yet still they wait, watching the Babe and Her.
 
Broken, the Mother stoops: the brutish foe
  Hurled with dull hate his bolts, and down She swayed,        10
Down, till She saw the toiling swarms below,—
  Platoons, guns, transports, endlessly arrayed:
“Women are woe for them! let Me be theirs,
And comfort them, and hearken all their prayers!”
 

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