Prayer of a Soldier in France

Original Text: 
Joyce Kilmer, ed. Robert Cortes Holliday, Vol. I (Port Washington, N.Y.: Kennikat Press, Inc., 1918), p. 109. PS 3521 I38Z5 1968 Robarts Library.
1My shoulders ache beneath my pack
2(Lie easier, Cross, upon His back).
3I march with feet that burn and smart
4(Tread, Holy Feet, upon my heart).
5Men shout at me who may not speak
6(They scourged Thy back and smote Thy cheek).
7I may not lift a hand to clear
8My eyes of salty drops that sear.
9(Then shall my fickle soul forget
10Thy agony of Bloody Sweat?)
11My rifle hand is stiff and numb
12(From Thy pierced palm red rivers come).
13Lord, Thou didst suffer more for me
14Than all the hosts of land and sea.
15So let me render back again
16This millionth of Thy gift. Amen.
Publication Start Year: 
1918
RPO poem Editors: 
Ian Lancashire
RPO Edition: 
RPO 1998.
Form: