He is born to the earth; on the day he enlists
He is sentenced to life on the soil,
To march on it, crawl on it, dig in it, sprawl on it,
Sleep on it after his toil.
Be it sand, rock or ice, gravel, mud or red loam
He will fight on it bravely, will die,
And the crude little cross telling men of his loss
Will cry mutely to some foreign sky.
He's the tired-looking man in the untidy garb,
weatherbeaten, footsore with fatigue,
But his spirit is strong as he marches along
With his burdens for league upon league.
He attacks in the face of a murderous fire,
Crawling forward, attacking through mud.
When he breaks through the lines, over wire and mines
On the point of his bayonet is blood.
Should you meet him, untidy, begrimed and fatigued,
Don't indulged in unwarrented mirth,
For the brave infanteer deserves more than your sneer,
He is truely the salt of the earth.
" A Gunner"
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