Friday, November 11, 2011

Thank You

You cannot hear the shot and shell
That punctuate the battle hell
Nor the rocket roar or bullet wheeze
That cover screams amid the trees
Ground trembles from a mine's blast
And bodies and their parts are cast
Like the cordite smoke upon the wind
To sprinkle around where none have sinned
Save to stand and take that ground
From hand grenade and rifle round
Of those as determined to wrest it away
And hold it yet another day.

You cannot hear the silent scream
Of men boiled away in the steam
From a boiler burst by torpedo blow
Rending the hull so far below
While planes swoop down spitting lead
And you think all the while you are dead
But for comrades who rise up from the deck
To fight them off and give them heck
Till they succumb to a bursting bomb
Taking their death with stoic aplomb
Giving their last full painful breath
While you give some meaning to their death

You cannot hear those who fight
But in every sullen, starry night
The fight returns to haunt their dreams
Filled with unholy, painful screams
Sounds of battle, smells of blood
A quiet miasma, a rising flood
Drawing them back to a time long ago
When their life was not just so
When the enemy stalked and fire blazed
And the battle for life left them dazed
A 'thank you' seems a pittance for what we owe
But it's important we tell them, important they know

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