Patriotic Duty


Patriotic duty
Destination, an ocean far
For family and country
A young man follows a distant star

His homeland fades before his eyes
The ocean beckons wide and vast
Apprehension and uncertainty
Carelessly tossed into the past

For no amount of training
Could ever prepare his mind
For the horrors he will encounter
Or the courage he will find

The first Great War to end war
Is how it was said to be
Red poppies now held tightly
In remembrance and history

Drenched to the bone, frozen by ice
Bullets flying past his head
He sees his mates bravely fall
A young digger, green of bloodshed

Advance, they shout, and like a shot
He engages with courage and steel
Bullets, bayonets, bombs, gas masks
Is any of this truly – real?

No time to think as the earth shakes
And the mines explode all around
Heard thousands of miles away
That landscape never again, found

Finally the victory cry erupts
And the digger prays a silent prayer
But, for the grace of God
His corpse would be lying there

This war of vivid memories
Forever cruelly etched into his mind
A robber of youth and vitality
True peace never again to find

© Copyright Jan Reid-Lennox. All Rights Reserved.