Conrad Aiken: The history of war is the history of mankind, seven thousand million dead on the field of battle
From The Wars and the Unknown Soldier
Dry leaves, soldier, dry leaves, dead leaves;
voices of leaves on the wind that bears them to
impassioned prayer, impassioned hymn of delight
of the gladly doomed to die. Stridor of beasts,
stridor of men, praises of lust and battle,
numberless as waves, the waves singing
to the wind that bears them down.
him of the Egyptian priests, Osynmandyas the King,
easward into Asia we passed, swarmed over Bactria,
three thousand years before Christ.
The history of war
is the history of mankind.
So many dead:
look at them there in the dark, look at them going,
the longest parade of all, the parade of the dead:
between then and now, seven thousand million dead:
dead on the field of battle.