Thursday, 11 November 2010

11/11/18 The end of the War to end all wars?

A slightly different approach to Rememberance Day from the usual WWI War Poetry and one that is closer to my reaction at finding the memorial to my Great Uncle at Poziers.

Green Fields of France - WW1 Memorial - The Fureys

Well, how do you do, young Willie McBride,
Do you mind if I sit down here by your graveside?
And rest for awhile in the warm summer sun,
I've been walking all day, and I'm nearly done.
I see by your gravestone you were only 19
When you joined the great fallen in 1916,
I hope you died well and I hope you died clean
Or young Willie McBride, was it slow and obscene?

Did they beat the drums slowly
Did they play the fife lowly
Did they sound the death march as they lowered you down
And did  the band play the last post and chorus
Did the pipes play the Flowers of the Forest?

Did you leave a wife or a sweetheart behind

In some faithful heart is your memory enshrined
Although you died back in 1916
In that faithful heart are you forever nineteen?
Or are you a stranger without even a name
Enclosed forever behind a glass frame?
In an old photograph torn, battered, and stained
And faded to yellow in a brown leather frame.


 The sun now shines on the green fields of France
There's a warm summer breeze makes the red poppies dance

And look how the sun shines from under the clouds
There's no gas, no barbed wire, there's no gun firing now.

But here in this graveyard it's still no man's land
The countless white crosses stand mute in the sand.
To man's blind indifference to his fellow man
To a whole generation that were butchered and dammed.


Ah young Willie Mc Bride I cant help wonder why
Do those that lie here know why did they die?
And did they believe when they answered the call
Did they really believe that this war would end war?
Well the sorrow, the suffering, the glory, the pain,
The killing, and dying was all done in vain
For young Willie Mc Bride it all happened again
And again, and again, and again, and again.