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"We have no quarrel with the german nation"
Posted by: liesl (---.abdn.ac.uk)
Date: August 23, 2004 08:25AM

These lines are from a poem by APH, whom we suspect is A P Herbert, from the 1940's. There are 6 4-line verses, each starting with the same line:
"We have no quarrel with the German Nation".

Can anyone confirm that it is AP Herbert, and give a source - maybe Punch magazine.


Re: "We have no quarrel with the german nation"
Posted by: IanB (---.tnt11.mel1.da.uu.net)
Date: August 23, 2004 10:19AM

If the poem is witty and tongue in cheek (in the spirit of Noel Coward's 'Don't Let's Be Beastly To The Germans') I'd bet on APH being AP Herbert, but I can't confirm it.


Re: 'We have no quarrel with the german nation'
Posted by: StephenFryer (---.l4.c5.dsl.pol.co.uk)
Date: August 23, 2004 04:32PM

NO QUARREL

'We have no quarrel with the German nation'-
One would not quarrel with the trustful sheep:
But generation after generation
They cough up rulers who disturb our sleep.

'We have no quarrel with the German nation.'
They're fond of music, poetry, and beer:
But, all the same, with tiresome iteration
They choose a fool to govern them-and cheer.

'We have no quarrel with the German nation';
But no one else upsets the common pot.
They are the cause of every conflagration-
Is it a mere coincidence, or what?

We had no quarrel with the German nation
When Wilhelm was the madman off the chain;
We helped along their rehabilitation-
And now, my hat, they do it all again!

'We have no quarrel with the German nation';
And Wagner's works are very good indeed:
But if they must repeat this aberration '.
It might be better if they did not breed.

'We have no quarrel with the German nation';
In their affairs of course we have no say:
But it would seem some major operation
(On head and heart) may be the only way.

A P Herbert
September 20, I939

Stephen


Re: 'We have no quarrel with the german nation'
Posted by: StephenFryer (---.l4.c5.dsl.pol.co.uk)
Date: August 23, 2004 04:35PM

My source is Siren Song, published in 1940 by Methuen, which has the Acknowledgement 'All these verses appeared in Punch, the Sunday Graphic, or Daily Sketch, to whose proprietors I ofer the customary thanks.'
Blimey: Sunday Graphic, Daily Sketch: showing my age now.

Stephen


Re: 'We have no quarrel with the german nation'
Posted by: Pam Adams (---.bus.csupomona.edu)
Date: August 23, 2004 04:56PM

"But, all the same, with tiresome iteration
They choose a fool to govern them-and cheer. "

Hey, we Americans resemble that remark!

pam


Re: "We have no quarrel with the german nation"
Posted by: marian2 (---.range81-152.btcentralplus.com)
Date: August 24, 2004 01:13PM

Wondered why the first line of each verse is in quotes - so googled around and discovered 'We have no quarrel with the German people' is the opening line of Woodrow Wilson's War Message to Congress - 2 April 1917. I bet everybody else already knew that, but it was new to me.


Re: "We have no quarrel with the german nation"
Posted by: marian2 (---.range81-152.btcentralplus.com)
Date: August 24, 2004 01:29PM

Googled a bit more and discovered Neville Chamberlin repeated the phrase in his speech to Parliament on 1 Sept 1939 on the Nazi invasion of Poland, continuing 'except that they allow themseles to be governed by a Nazi Government. '




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