Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, THE BIRDS OF STEEL, by WILLIAM HENRY DAVIES

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THE BIRDS OF STEEL, by            
First Line: This apple-tree, that once was green
Last Line: Up, nearer to god, they fly and sing.
Alternate Author Name(s): Davies, W. H.
Subject(s): Air Warfare; World War I; First World War

This apple-tree, that once was green,
Is now a thousand flowers in one!
And, with their bags strapped to their thighs,
There's many a bee that comes for sweets,
To stretch each bag to its full size.

And when the night has grown a moon,
And I lie half-asleep in bed,
I hear those bees again -- ah no,
It is the birds of steel, instead,
Seeking their innocent prey below.

Man-ridden birds of steel, unseen,
That come to drop their murdering lime
On any child or harmless thing
Before the early morning time:
Up, nearer to God, they fly and sing.

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