Was It You? Poem Rhyme Scheme and Analysis


Hullo young Jones with your tie so gayA
And your pen behind your earB
Will you mark my cheque in the usual wayA
For I'm overdrawn I fearC
Then you look at me in a manner blandD
As you turn your ledger's leavesE
And you hand it back with a soft white handD
And the air of a man who grievesE
Was it you young Jones was it you I sawF
And I think I see you yetG
With a live bomb gripped in your grimy pawF
And your face to the parapetG
With your lips asnarl and your eyes gone madH
With a fury that thrilled you throughI
Oh I look at you now and I think my ladH
Was it you young Jones was it youI
Hullo young Smith with your well fed lookJ
And your coat of dapper fitK
Will you recommend me a decent bookJ
With nothing of War in itK
Then you smile as you polish a finger nailL
And your eyes serenely roamM
And you suavely hand me a thrilling taleL
By a man who stayed at homeM
Was it you young Smith was it you I sawF
In the battle's storm and stenchN
With a roar of rage and a wound red rawO
Leap into the reeking trenchN
As you stood like a fiend on the firing shelfP
And you stabbed and hacked and slewI
Oh I look at you and I ask myselfP
Was it you young Smith was it youI
Hullo old Brown with your ruddy cheekQ
And your tummy's rounded swellR
Your garden's looking jolly chicQ
And your kiddies awf'ly wellR
Then you beam at me in your cheery wayA
As you swing your water canS
And you mop your brow and you blithely sayA
'What about golf old man '-
Was it you old Brown was it you I sawF
Like a bull dog stick to your gunT
A cursing devil of fang and clawF
When the rest were on the runT
Your eyes aflame with the battle hateU
As you sit in the family pewI
And I see you rising to pass the plateU
I ask Old Brown was it youI
Was it me and you Was it you and meV
Is that grammar or is it notW
Who groveled in filth and miseryV
Who gloried and groused and foughtX
Which is the wrong and which is the rightY
Which is the false and the trueI
The man of peace or the man of fightY
Which is the ME and the YOUI

Robert Service


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