The Bravest Battle

The Bravest Battle

The bravest battle that ever was fought;

Shall I tell you where and when?

On the maps of the world you will find it not;

It was fought by the mothers of men.

Nay, not with cannon or battle shot,

With sword or braver pen;

Nay, not with eloquent word or thought,

From mouths of wonderful men.

But deep in a woman's walled-up heart-

Of woman that would not yield,

But patiently, silently bore her part-

Lo! there is that battlefield.

No marshaling troop, no bivouac song;

No banners to gleam and wave;

And oh! These battles they last so long-

From babyhood to the grave!

Yet, faithful still as a bridge of stars,

She fights in her walled-up town-

Fights on and on in the endless wars,

Then silent, unseen-goes down.

Joaquin Miller