This poem was written as a response to the poem "In Flander's Field" and is intended to remind us how much more needs to be done by we who have been entrusted with the legacy of those who died that we might be free.
For the youth they gave and the blood they gave,
For the strength that was our stay,
For every marked or unmarked grave
On steel-torn Flander's way -
We who are whole of body and soul,
We have a debt to pay.
When we have justly given back again
To the maimed body and bewildered brain,
New strength and light and will to take one's part
In the world's work at field or desk or mart,
When this old joy of living we restore,
We shall have paid a little of our score.
When we have given to earth's stricken lands
The service of our minds and hearts and hands,
When we have made the blackened orchards bright,
And brought the homeless ones to warmth and light,
When we have made these desolate forget,
We shall have paid a little of our debt.
For the youth they gave and the blood they gave
We must render back the due:
For every marked and nameless grave
We must pay with service true;
'Till the scales stand straight with even weight
And all the world is a world made new.