Love’s Day-Break by Siegfried Sassoon
Love wakes me with his word…
And out of gloom I’ll bring you
The first brave twilight bird
My day-break thoughts to sing you:
And clouds, likes roses flowering in the skies,
Shall be your garland plucked from Paradise.
I will follow you into the sun,
And glory shall not blind me:
With every wind I’ll run:
In trees and stars you’ll find me.
O living joy! Radiance from death returning!
Like these my love shall pass, in beauty burning.
Everyone suddenly burst out singing,
And I was filled with such delight
As prisoned birds must find in freedom,
Winging wildly across the white
Orchards and dark-green field, on,
on, and out of sight.
Everyone’s voice was suddenly lifted;
And beauty came like the setting sun:
My heart was shaken with tears; and horror
Drifted way… O, but everyone
Was a bird; and the song was wordless; the singing will never be done.
Siegfried Loraine Sassoon, CBE, MC (8 September 1886 – 1 September 1967)
That Sassoon could write such heart rending words in 1920, and let his mind range across such a sensitive and spiritual landscape, after experiencing the horrors of trench warfare is miraculous.
Below you can view, print or download a scan of Sassoon’s handwritten manuscript for this piece of work. Read more about Sassoon at The Poetry Foundation here.
“Love’s Daybreak / Everyone Sang,” by Sassoon, Siegfried (1886-1967). St. John’s College Library, Cambridge University / The Siegfried Sassoon Literary Estate via First World War Poetry Digital Archive, accessed May 6, 2019, http://www.oucs.ox.ac.uk/ww1lit/collections/item/9825.