Marching Men: War Verses/Pro Patria Mortui

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PRO PATRIA MORTUI.

SAY not they died for us;
Say, rather, with their hearts aflame,
They faced the sceptred shame,
Not counting for themselves the cost,
Well knowing else, a world were lost.
For this they came;
For this they died;
For this their death is justified.

Say not they die;
Say, rather, with youth's larger trust,
Into the featureless, far unknown,
Challenging love's integrity,
They spring from earth's recoiling dust.
Could greater be?
Can love disown?
Can truth be overthrown?

Say not for us they died;
They touched that dimly-visioned height
The ever-enlarging soul of man
Has yet to climb; their feet outran
The world's slow gait; their spirits range
In circling flight
The unconjectured fields of light.
For this they suffered change;
For this they died;
For this their death is justified.