Sacramentum Supremum

A poem by Henry Newbolt


Ye that with me have fought and failed and fought
To the last desperate trench of battle's crest,
Not yet to sleep, not yet; our work is nought;
On that last trench the fate of all may rest,
Draw near, my friends; and let your thoughts be high;
Great hearts are glad when it is time to give;
Life is no life to him that dares not die,
And death no death to him that dares to live.

Draw near together; none be last or first;
We are no longer names, but one desire;
With the same burning of the soul we thirst,
And the same wine to-night shall quench our fire.
Drink! to our fathers who begot us men,
To the dead voices that are never dumb;
Then to the land of all our loves, and then
To the long parting, and the age to come.

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