POETRY

FEBRUARY 2021

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Swarm of Drones

by Henry Herz

with apologies to William Shakespeare

Any drone that shall survive this mission, and see old age,

Will yearly on the vigil message his hangar mates,

And say "Tomorrow is Saint Crispian."

Then will he doff his tarp and show his scars,

And say "This battle damage I had on Crispin's day."

Old drones shut down,

But he'll remember, with advantages,

What feats he did that day. Then shall our serial numbers,

Familiar in his mouth as household words—

Be in their flowing transmission signals freshly rememb'red.

This story shall the veteran drone teach the next generation;

And Crispian shall ne'er go by,

From this day to the ending of the world,

But we in it shall be remembered—

We few, we happy few, we swarm of drones;

For he to-day that strikes his target

Shall be my brother; be his AI ne'er so outdated,

And drones now a-building

Shall calculate themselves accurs'd they were not here,

And hold their manufacturer's warranties cheap whiles any broadcasts

That flew with us this day.

END

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Henry Herz has authored 11 traditionally published children's titles and 25 traditionally published short stories, including six for the SFWA-qualifying markets Daily Science Fiction, Blackstone Publishing, Highlights for Children, and Ladybug (Cricket Media). Henry has edited three fiction anthologies. His website is www.henryherz.com.

Poetry by Henry Herz:

"Swarm of Drones" February 2021