Night of Battle

By Yvor Winters 1900–1968 Yvor Winters

Europe: 1944
as regarded from a great distance

Impersonal the aim
Where giant movements tend;
Each man appears the same;
Friend vanishes from friend.

In the long path of lead
That changes place like light
No shape of hand or head
Means anything tonight.

Only the common will
For which explosion spoke;
And stiff on field and hill
The dark blood of the folk.

Yvor Winters, “Night of Battle” from The Collected Poems of Yvor Winters. Used by permission of Ohio University Press, Athens, Ohio.

Source: Poetry (December 1946).

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This poem originally appeared in the December 1946 issue of Poetry magazine

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December 1946
 Yvor  Winters

Biography

Allen Tate once commented on Yvor Winters the poet thus: "If he has been neglected—when he has not been ignored—the reasons are not hard to find. He has conducted a poetic revolution all his own that owes little or nothing to the earlier revolution of Pound and Eliot, and that goes back to certain great, likewise neglected Tudor poets for metrical and stylistic models." Winters commented to Contemporary Authors: "Tate is wrong . . .

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Poem Categorization

SUBJECT War & Conflict, Social Commentaries

Poetic Terms Rhymed Stanza

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