“Oh! Son it´s good to have you home
c´mon in, there´s a fresh brew on the stove,
we´ve missed you and we´ve worried so
did you get all our letters sent with love?”
Your rooms just as you left it, lad
c´mon in, I´ll get a dinner on,
your Dad will be home shortly, lad
he tells everyone he´s proud of you, our son.
What´s it like, the trenches, lad
and what´s it like this place they call the Somme,
it´s been a year you´ve been away
how long´s this madness going on.
Sorry to hear about your friend, lad
and about the way he met his end,
we keep praying for your safety, son
and for this ****** war to end.
Sit down and take your boots of son
I´ll go and bring your slippers down,
how´s your brew, is it strong enough
Oh! Lad, it´s so good to have you home.
Mrs Linton´s boy´s, John, and Dave
they won´t be coming home,
she got the telegrams this morning
must be the twentieth in this town.
You seem to be much taller, son
and your features seem much harder now,
you have the look of a man about you, lad
with those troubled lines upon your brow.
Did you get the cakes we sent, lad
and the gloves and socks we made,
do they feed you well over there, lad
come and help me get the table laid”.
“I´m only home for two weeks, Ma
then it´s back to the front for me,
it´s good to be back home again
I´ve really missed your cups of tea.
Our Regiment was two hundred strong, Ma
and now we´re down to seventy-three,
it´s hell living in the trenches, Ma
I´ve seen things young men should never see”.
Four months later, Ma received a telegram
the sixtieth in the town,
her lad is missing in action
and his remains have not been found.
“C´mon in, I´ve made a nice strong brew, Pa
it says our lad´s not coming home,
it was delivered here this morning, Pa”
and then the pair of them broke down.
Tom Balch ©