Nor polish buckles after latest fashions,
Preferred their hair long, putties comfortable,
Barely escaping hanging, indeed hardly able;
In Bridge and smoking without army cautions
Spending hours that sped like evil for quickness,
(While others burnished brasses, earned promotions).
These were those ones who jested in the trench,
While others argued of army ways, and wrenched
What little soul they had still further from shape,
And died off one by one, or became officers.
Without the first of dream, the ghost of notions
Of ever becoming soldiers, or smart and neat,
Surprised as ever to find the army capable
Of sounding ‘Lights out’ to break a game of Bridge,
As to fear candles would set a barn alight:
In Artois or Picardy they lie – free of useless fashions.
Substitute the modern corporation for the army, and bureaucrats for soldiers, and we have the makings of a new manifesto.
Some great lines here:
and wrenchedWhat little soul they had still further from shape,
free of useless fashions.
Ruled by routine and other’s ideas; the conformity of the modern corporation - how we need Gurney’s lines.