Anzac [poem by C. J. Dennis, 25 April 1927]

[Editor: This poem by C. J. Dennis was published in The Herald, 25 April 1927.]


By C. J. Dennis

Anzac! And war’s grim storm . . .
The scream of a passing shell,
Torn earth, and — a quiet form . . . .
“Pass, comrade. All is well.”

Nay, but his spirit lives; be very sure.
Year follows year, and earthly things depart;
But what he, dying, gave us shall endure
Now and for ever in the nation’s heart.
Now and for ever; tho’ the flesh be gone,
Still shall that Spirit bid us, “Carry on!”

Anzac! The mounds increase;
Marking where soldiers fell. . . . .
Earth’s healing scars; and peace.
“Sleep, comrades. All is well.”

And be full certain that they do but sleep,
Who, falling, yet were well content to find
Fit sanctuary in the hearts that keep
That spirit and that memory enshrined.
High on Gallipoli, lights that once shone,
Again flame o’er the ocean: “Carry on!”

Anzac! The tramp of marching feet. . . . .
The toll of a passing-bell.
Bowed heads along a city street. . . .
“Pass, soldier. All is well.”

Pass, soldier. When your dwindling ranks grow small;
When, one by one, old comrades you shall greet;
When the last, lonely veteran’s footfall
Goes echoing adown this city street,
Still may that Spirit, tho’ all else be gone,
Cry to our sons: “Australia! Carry on!”

The Herald (Melbourne, Vic.), 25 April 1927, p. 1

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