THE VANQUISHED

Here on this sun-scorched hill we laid us down

In silence deep as is the silence of defeat.

Upon our wasted brow you placed no laurel crown,

But neither did you sound the trumpet for retreat.

Mourn not for us for here defeat and victory are one;

We can not feel humanity's insidious harm;

The strive with famine, pain and pestilence are done,

our compromise with death laid by that mortal storm.

Though chastened, well we know our mission is not dead,

Nor are the dreams of victory in vain.

For lo, the dawn is in the east: The night is fled

before an August day which will be ours again:

So rest we here, dear comrades, on this foreign hill,

This alien clay made somehow richer by our dust,

Provides us with a transitory couch, until

the loving hills of home enfold us in maternal trust,

For we are assured brave hearts across the sea will not forget

The humble sacrifice we laid on Freedom's sacred shrine,

and hold that righteousness will be triumphant yet,

And o'er the Earth again His star of Peace will shine.

                                                              

Dedicated to those who died at O'Donnell Prisoner of War enclosure in the Philippine Islands

by Fred W. Koenig. 1st Lt U.S.A.

 

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