Country of mine whose verdant fields and broadlands merge to a sea washed shore,
Where heron cry to earth and sky, and the boats of men are moored,
Upon whose soil has grown a race,
Strong, virile, true, their only fear disgrace.
Regiment of ours upon whose silken flag is writ thy hard won fame
Proclaims thy might in Britain’s right to die, but never so in shame;
What mothers these, theirs the noble part,
To give England all, your love, your heart.
England, hate not of thine hath riven to the edge the pure white robe of God,
Stripped to war’s gaze, in sore amaze the curse of Siva’s rod,
The crime is theirs, not ours the broken word,
But ours the task to break the curse with which the world is stirred.
Barren and sun scorched country, hills clothed with Eastern scrub, beyond is mystery;
Close grips with death and hurried breath the Norfolks charged to victory,
Part of the world’s great war, theirs to play a part,
To do or die but not with craven heart.
Men from far-flung frontiers, formed with our own good men, a nation’s perfect blend,
They charged with a dash, amid war’s dire clash, and the groans of falling men;
These super-men of Britain in the throes of a fearful plight,
Have written their names in glory, on the roll of Britain’s might.
“Advance,” had been the order, and the Norfolks did comprehend,
And into the fight and darkness of night went some three hundred of God’s best men;
When the transports sailed, there came no answering call,
They were resting beyond where the shadows fall.
Surely before all peoples the hosts will again parade their glory set quite clearly then,
In the van of this host in the honoured post will parade some three hundred men,
And these Norfolk men that odds could not dismay,
Will be called for parade from Suvla Bay.
G A GREIG. Norwich.
The origins of this poem are unknown; the text of it was posted in the Great War Forum.