November is a month which has a special significance for many people. It is also a time of contrasts – thoughts of those lost to us often take place in rooms infused with exceptional light, of a quality seen at no other time of the year.
The following poem is a Tanka, the shortest of my four contributions to Words from Battlefield – an anthology featuring exceptional poet A.C.Clarke – launched on 24 October 2020.
For some, remembrance relates more to matters of war. This year the focus has been mainly on World War 2 but I am going to finish off with a poem which relates to one of the horrific battles of the First World War. The message is the same. This was one of my contributions to the 2018 Dove Tales Anthology A Kind of Stupidity and is also featured on the Dove Tales Scotland website.
memorial (passchendaele 100) bugle notes intone the hundred millionth earthly post commemorating how easily men who would not wish to be enemies become cannon fodder in the cause of power muddied and bloodied and mostly youthful conscripted or seduced by words untruthful lambs slaughtering lambs as they are slaughtered all as ordered, all as ordered dignitaries come from ivory towers commemorating hundreds of thousands of mud-swamped casualties sacrificed a hundred days under boot as trade for five miles so-called advancing muddied and bloodied and mostly youthful conscripted or seduced by words untruthful lambs slaughtering lambs as they are slaughtered all as ordered, all as ordered inherited wealth and ceremonial garb commemorating loss lest we forget, always knowing that those who govern will once again choose the farce of war as the way forward standing by the latest of a hundred million wreaths into the horn the solemn bugler breathes what is nevertheless never the last post