War poem

I read of a thousand killed.
And am glad because the scrounging imperial paw
Was there so bitten:
As a man at elections is thrilled
When the results pour in, and the North goes with him
And the West breaks in the thaw.

(That fighting was a long way off.)

Forgetting therefore an election
Being fought with votes and lies and catch-cries
And orator’s frowns and flowers and posters’ noise
Is paid for with cheques and toys:
Wars the most glorious
Victory-winged and steeple-uproarious
… With the lives, burned-off,
Of young men and boys.

As the number of US troops killed in Iraq exceeded one thousand, Chritopher Hitchens has dredged up this poem, “A Thousand Killed,” by little known British poet Bernard Spencer here in Slate.