Prose & Poetry - The Muse in Arms - Hymn To The Wild Boar
First published in London in November 1917 and reprinted in February 1918 The Muse in Arms comprised, in the words of editor E. B. Osborne:
"A collection of war poems, for the most part written in the field of action, by seamen, soldiers, and flying men who are serving, or have served, in the Great War".
Below is one of eight poems featured within the Chivalry of Sport section of the collection.
You can access other poems within the section via the sidebar to the right.
Hymn To The Wild Boar
by Julian Grenfell
God gave the horse for man
And steel wherewith to fight,
And wine to swell his soul with pride
And women for delight:
But a better gift than these all four
Was when He made the fighting boar.
The horse is filled with
His heart is bold and free;
The bright steel flashes in the air,
And glitters hungrily.
But these were little use before
The Lord He made the fighting boar.
The ruby wine doth banish
But it confounds the head;
The fickle fair is light as air,
And makes the heart bleed red;
But wine nor love can tempt us more
When we may hunt the fighting boar.
When Noah's big monsoon was
The land began to ride again,
And then the first hog-spear was made
By the hands of Tubal Cain;
The sons of Shem and many more
Came out to ride the fighting boar.
Those ancient Jew boys went
They knew not reck nor fear,
Old Noah knocked the first two jinks,
And Nimrod got the spear.
And ever since those times of yore
True men do ride the fighting boar.
'Bantam' was a term to describe members of battalions between 5ft 1in and 5ft 4in.
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