In memory of Captain Hedley Verity, injured in Sicily. Taken POW, buried at Caserta. Pre-war, Yorkshire and England slow left arm bowler.
The ruth and truth you taught have come full circle
On that fell island all whose history lies,
Far now from Bramhall Lane and far from Scarborough
You recollect how foolish are the wise.
On this great ground more marvellous than Lord’s
– Time takes more spin than nineteen thirty four –
You face at last that Bradman-shaming
Batsman whose cuts obey no natural law.
Run up again, as gravely smile as ever,
Veer without fear your left unlucky arm
In His so dark direction, but no length
However lovely can disturb the harm
That is His style, defer the winning drive
Or shake the crowd from their uproarious calm.