Let but the cause seem beautiful, dear God,
If we must die. Make us believe, in truth,
For all mankind we thus forswear our youth,
To stay till end of time the oppressor's rod;
That but for us, harsh power would ride rough-shod
Through freedom's delicate gardens, and the tooth
Of hatred rend our people without ruth;
So might we sleep contented, under the sod.
For else, who knows what gladness here on earth
Was destined us, what nobly high employ?
Oh, hard it is that youth should cease to be!
For now came love, with a great glad rebirth
To company our way, and now came joy!
Not death we fear, but death's futility.
From Hours of France, © Paul Scott Mowrer,1918