Those Others

From The Arthur Conan Doyle Encyclopedia

Those Others is a poem written by Arthur Conan Doyle first published in The Guards Came Through and Other Poems on 16 december 1919.


Those Others

Where are those others?—the men who stood
In the first wild spate of the German flood,
And paid full price with their heart's best blood
For the saving of you and me:
French's Contemptibles, haggard and lean,
Allenby's lads of the cavalry screen,
Gunners who fell in Battery L,
And Guardsmen of Landrecies?

Where are those others who fought and fell,
Outmanned, outgunned and scant of shell,
On the deadly curve of the Ypres hell,
Barring the coast to the last?
Where are our laddies who died out there,
From Poelcapelle to Festubert,
When the days grew short and the poplars bare
In the cold November blast?

For us their toil and for us their pain,
The sordid ditch in the sodden plain,
The Flemish fog and the driving rain,
The cold that cramped and froze;
The weary night, the chill bleak day,
When earth was dark and sky was grey,
And the ragged weeds in the dripping clay
Were all God's world to those.

Where are those others in this glad time,
When the standards wave and the joy-bells chime,
And London stands with outstretched hands
Waving her children in?
Athwart our joy still comes the thought
Of the dear dead boys, whose lives have bought
All that sweet victory has brought
To us who lived to win.

To each his dreams, and mine to me,
But as the shadows fall I see
That ever-glorious company—
The men who bide out there.
Rifleman, Highlander, Fusilier,
Airman and Sapper and Grenadier,
With flaunting banner and wave and cheer,
They flow through the darkening air.

And yours are there, and so are mine,
Rank upon rank and line on line,
With smiling lips and eyes that shine,
And bearing proud and high.
Past they go with their measured tread,
These are the victors, these—the dead!
Ah, sink the knee and bare the head
As the hallowed host goes by!