This, then, is parting – dry-eyed loneliness
Mind filled with doubts,
And hopes astride my fears.
There is no grief
Nor wounding bitterness,
Only impatience for the coming years.
Such is our lot.
To build a world anew –
Nor shall we shrink from this ennobling task,
Rather uplifted be
That we must do
Our burning best, old evils to unmask.
Ours be the privilege to carve the path
And set mankind
Upon his upward climb;
Nor matters it
If in the aftermath,
We shall not join him till the end of Time.
Corporal S. Abel
Taken from the anthology ‘Poems from the Desert – Verses by members of the Eighth Army’. Published by George G. Harrap & Co. Ltd.