The Charge of the Light Brigade

…from the quills of the dead white poets

Alfred Tennyson (1809 – 1892)

Tennyson

Half a league, half a league,
Half a league onward,
All in the valley of Death
    Rode the six hundred.Forward the Light Brigade!
Charge for the guns!’ he said.
Into the valley of Death
    Rode the six hundred.Forward, the Light Brigade!’
Was there a man dismay’d?
Not tho’ the soldier knew
    Someone had blunder’d.
Theirs not to make reply,
Theirs not to reason why,
Theirs but to do and die.
Into the valley of Death,
    Rode the six hundred.
Cannon to right of them,
Cannon to left of them,
Cannon in front of them
    Volley’d and thunder’d;
Storm’d at with shot and shell,
Boldly they rode and well,
Into the jaws of Death
Into the mouth of hell
    Rode the six hundred.
Flash’d all their sabres bare,
Flash’d as they turn’d in air
Sabring the gunners there,
Charging an army, while
    All the world wonder’d.
Plunged in battery smoke
Right thro’ the line they broke.
Cossack and Russian
Reel’d from the sabre-stroke
    Shatter’d and sunder’d.
Then they rode back, but not,
    Not the six hundred.
Cannon to right of them,
Cannon to left of them,
Cannon behind them
    Volley’d and thundr’d;
Storm’d at with shot and shell,
While horse and hero fell,
They that had fought so well
Came thro’ the jaws of Death,
Back from the mouth of hell,
All that was left of them,
    Left of six hundred.
When can their glory fade?
O the wild charge they made!
    All the world wonder’d.
Honor the charge they made!
Honor the Light Brigade,
    Noble six hundred. 

About Paul Jacko

Jacko was born in Czechoslovakia not long before the communist putsch in February 1948. He studied industrial chemistry there and left in 1969 for Australia, where he became a lawyer and established his own practice. He has now retired and beside hunting, fishing, camping, prospecting and playing golf he amuses himself by writing.
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