Poem of the day

The Healers
by Laurence Binyon (1869-1943)

In a vision of the night I saw them,
⁠      In the battles of the night.
’Mid the roar and the reeling shadows of blood
⁠      They were moving like light,

Light of the reason, guarded
⁠      Tense within the will,
As a lantern under a tossing of boughs
⁠      Burns steady and still.

With scrutiny calm, and with fingers
⁠      Patient as swift
They bind up the hurts and the pain-writhen
⁠      Bodies uplift,

Untired and defenceless; around them
⁠      With shrieks in its breath
Bursts stark from the terrible horizon
⁠      Impersonal death;

But they take not their courage from anger
⁠      That blinds the hot being;
They take not their pity from weakness;
⁠      Tender, yet seeing;

Feeling, yet nerved to the uttermost;
⁠      Keen, like steel;
Yet the wounds of the mind they are stricken with,
⁠      Who shall heal?

They endure to have eyes of the watcher
⁠      In hell, and not swerve
For an hour from the faith that they follow,
⁠      The light that they serve.

Man true to man, to his kindness
⁠      That overflows all,
To his spirit erect in the thunder
⁠      When all his forts fall,—

This light, in the tiger-mad welter,
⁠      They serve and they save.
What song shall be worthy to sing of them
⁠      Braver than the brave?

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