I am trying to discern the historical setting for three of Chesterton's most important poems, "A Hymn," "A Hymn for the Church Militant," and "The Truce at Christmas." They all make reference to war, but they were all written between 1904 and 1907, when there were no military actions involving England. The Second Boer War had ended in 1902. So are these poems to be understood in generic terms? If so, how to account for the uncanny prescience of "The Truce at Christmas," which anticipates the event that actually happened in 1914, during the first Christmas of the Great War?
Many thanks, RW