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Poem by Robert William Service


The Alcázar


The General now lives in town;
He's eighty odd, they say;
You'll see him strolling up and down
The Prada any day.
He goes to every football game,
The bull-ring knows his voice,
And when the people cheer his name
Moscardo must rejoice.

Yet does he, in the gaiety
Of opera and ball,
A dingy little cellar see,
A picture on a wall?
A portrait of a laughing boy
Of sixteen singing years...
Oh does his heart dilate with joy,
Or dim his eyes with tears?

And can he hear a wistful lad
Speak on the telephone?
"Hello! How is it with you, Dad?
That's right; I'm all alone.
They say they'll shoot me at the dawn
If you do not give in...
But never mind, Dad; carry on:
You know we've got to win."

And so they shot him at the dawn.
No bandage irked his eyes,
A lonely lad, so wistful wan,
He made his sacrifice.
he saw above the Citadel
His flag of glory fly,
And crying: "long live Spain!" he fell
And died as heroes die.



Robert William Service


Robert William Service's other poems:
  1. Pullman Porter
  2. Trees against the Sky
  3. The Three Voices
  4. Mammy
  5. The Missal Makers


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