Page:Canadian poems of the great war.djvu/102

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Major J. M. Langstaff

Killed in action at Vimy Ridge, March 1st, 1917. James Miles Langstaff, son of the late Dr. James Langstaff, was born at Richmond Hill, Ontario, July 25th, 1883. He had a brilliant intel lect. Rarely has his career as a student been equalled. After Passing the highest actuarial examinations, he entered ,lautf graduating at Osgoode Hall in 1912, ivith the Gold Medal and the Van Koughnet Scholarship. As a soldier at the Front 75th Battalion, CM.F. he rose rapidly in rank, was mentioned in despatches, and later was recommended for the Military Cross.

THE ANSWER

OTHE Tyrant Lord has drawn his sword, And has flung the scabbard away. He has said the word that loosed his horde

To ravage, destroy and slay. Then where are those who will dare oppose

The blast of my fury s flame? But a salty breeze swept across the seas,

And back the clear answer came: We have heard the boast of your mighty host,

And slaves will we ne er become ; Let our deeds declare what our hearts will dare,

We come ! We come ! We come !

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��WAR-SHAPED DESTINY

NEVER thought that strange romantic War Would shape my life and plan my destiny; Though in my childhood s dreams I ve seen his car And grisly steeds flash grimly thwart the sky. Yet now behold a vaster, mightier strife Than echoed on the plains of sounding Troy, Defeats and triumphs, death, wounds, laughter, life, All mingled in a strange complex alloy.

I view the panorama in a trance Of awe, yet coloured with a secret joy, For I have breathed in epic and romance, Have lived the dreams that thrilled me as a boy. How sound the ancient saying is, forsooth, How weak is Fancy s gloss of Fact s stern truth !

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