Conflict Poetry: “Epitaphs of War” Rudyard Kipling

Rudyard Kipling, often seen as jingoistic poet, persuaded his only son to volunteer for the First World War, where he was killed six weeks after his 18th birthday at the Battle of Loos in 1915. His body was never found. Kipling’s Epitaphs of War, written in 1919, includes:

COMMON FORM

If any question why we died,
Tell them, because our fathers lied.

The rest are at: http://www.kiplingsociety.co.uk/poems_epitaphs.htm

Kipling served on the War Graves Commission and helped ensure all the other sons bodies that could be found were buried and remembered along with the unknown soldiers too…

About creativeconflictwisdom

I spent 32 years in a Fortune Five company working on conflict: organizational, labor relations and senior management. I have consulted in a dozen different business sectors and the US Military. I work with a local environmental non profit. I have written a book on the neuroscience of conflict, and its implications for conflict handling called Creative Conflict Wisdom (forthcoming).
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