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Horace Smith: The hero-butchers of the sword

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Anti-war essays, poems, short stories and literary excerpts

British writers on peace and war

Horace Smith: Selections on peace and war

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Horace Smith
From The Poet Among the Trees

The hero-butchers of the sword,
In Rome and Greece, and many a far land,
Like Bravos, murder’d for reward,
The settled price – a laurel-garland.

On bust or coin we mark the wreath,
Forgetful of its bloody story,
How many myriads writhed in death,
That one might bear this type of glory.

Cæsar first wore the badge, ’tis said,
‘Cause his bald sconce had nothing on it,
Knocking some millions on the head,
To get his own a leafy bonnet.

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