Posted by Don Scott on July 5, 2020, 12:10 pm
I have spent a couple of days trying to restore files/photos on my PC after a catastrophic failure and came across some very old docs that I thought were long gone. |
I had the great privilege of being curator of the York & Lancaster Regimental Museum, Rotherham, for 15 years up to retirement in 1998. The Regt. had its war poets and Alexander Robertson was one of them, a man from Edinburgh but a student of Sheffield University at the outbreak of WW1. He joined the Sheffield Pals and was killed on the first day of the Somme, 1st July, 1916. I didn't hear or see a single commemorative reference to that terrible battle this year.
Just as a tribute to all those who suffered in that awful conflict I thought you might like to read one of his poems which, for all its beautiful flow, is quite deep and hard to fathom but strangely haunting...for me anyway.
Lines before going (Alexander Robertson)
Soon is the night of our faring to regions unknown,
There not to flinch at the challenge suddenly thrown
By the great process of Being ~ daily to see
The utmost that life has of horror and yet to be
Calm and the masters of fear. Aware that the soul
Lives as a part and alone for the weal of the whole,
So shall the mind be free from the pain of regret,
Vain and enfeebling, firm in each venture, and yet
Brave not as those who despair, but keen to maintain,
Though not assured, hope in beneficent pain.
Hope that the truth of the world is not what appears,
Hope in the triumph of man for the price of his tears