Rupert Chawner Brooke was born in Rugby on August 3rd 1887. He went to Cambridge University and was a good poet.In 1911 his first book of poetry was published. In 1915 he was asked to join the Royal Navy by Winston Churchill, and he accepted.Brooke sailed to Gallipoli to fight the Turks. He was pleased about this as he had always wanted to do battle with the Turks.
“I suddenly realised that the ambition of my lifehas been - since I was two - to go on a militaryexpedition against the Turks.“Rupert Brooke, 1915
Rupert Brooke’s best known poem is probably TheSoldier. It was written in 1914. The Soldier expresses anoble, self-sacrificial attitude to war in contrast to the more realistic poetry of other war poets such as Wilfred Owen and Siegfried Sassoon.
At 4:46pm on the 23rd April 1915, St George’s Day, Rupert Brooke died of blood poisoning on a French hospital ship moored in the bay of the Greek island of Skyros.“We buried him in the same evening in an olive-grove where he had sat with us on Tuesday - one of the loveliest places on this earth, with grey green olives round him, one weeping above his head…”
“Here lies a servant of God, Sub-Lieutenant in the English Navy, who died for the deliverance of Constantinople from the Turks.”
If I should die, think only this of me:That theres some corner of a foreign fieldThat is for ever England. There shall beIn that rich earth a richer dust concealed;
A dust whom England bore, shaped, made aware,Gave, once, her flowers to love, her ways to roam,A body of Englands, breathing English air,Washed by the rivers, blest by suns of home.
And think, this heart, all evil shed away,A pulse in the eternal mind, no lessGives somewhere back the thoughts by England given;Her sights and sounds; dreams happy as her day;And laughter, learnt of friends; and gentleness,In hearts at peace, under an English heaven.