- Book: Arrow Music BY [Bryher].
- Poem: ARROW-MUSIC.
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An old Egyptian said:
"it is a dream which leads them,
on toward Babylon, out toward the sea."
scorched on the wastes for a dream,
scorched till the skin cracked under the helmet-rim,
till we printed a way with bones
for the swordsmen who followed us . . . .
we died; but not for a dream.
We marched east
from the wolf-fight at midnight,
from Thracian snow, from bent roofs,
from pulse, from winter beans.
"I will fill your shields with jasper,
your helmets with roses;
I will give you Persia for a sword-belt;
slake your thirst with girls,
that freeze the sleet to colour,
whiter than your dream of water;)
I will show you marvels over the edge of the desert,
agate deer, the mirage of a city,
an elephant with emerald eyes.
Some of us had Troy in our veins;
after eight hundred years
an earlier, lovelier city
(burnt ashes, arrow-music,)
drew us back to the plains.
South with Hanno,
east with Alexander--
it is better to die beneath a Persian rose-bush
than to smell dung and cabbages for forty years.