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spysgrandson Sep 2016
gulls cawed, so loud their calls
echoed off the cliffs behind us, a ghost flock answering,
though not shrill enough to rouse us

they flew crisscross patterns
and dove into the surf, but not one landed
on the carrion strewn across the sands

not like the vultures of my youth,
ravenous black hawks that began their devouring
at the first scent of death, or a moment before

no, these creatures merely called
to one another, a curious conversing
about the carnage below

perhaps their strange song
our dirge, as they swooped to and fro, wings
slicing currents carrying our souls

Omaha Beach, June 6, 1944
spysgrandson Sep 2016
they came
together to celebrate his life

how he made it this long,
he wondered; he saw them poking endless candles
into the white cake in front of him

behind him, his daughter
hand on his shoulder, insisting he have all ninety
instead of two fat wax digits "90" wedded,
a lone wick on top

ninety on June 6, 2016
he gave little thought to past birthdays
he forgot most, except one burned clear
in memory--his eighteenth, when
he landed on that beach

the sands and surf of his dreams for
three score and a dozen years since, eyes open,
or shut tight in deep sleep, he recalled that shore: someplace
between light and dark, between breath and air;
he saw the blood, he heard the cries,
he remembered his heart thumping

more than that he recalled jumping
over bodies on the beach, now beyond his reach
he could see only vague shapes of them--men
with whom he spent months sharing meals,
smokes and secrets

in all these long years,
he never understood why he received
not a scratch, while those only feet, even inches
from him were eviscerated

now, as ninety lightning years
flashed then flickered before him, he closed his eyes,
to ensure this waking dream was real

and those around him, singing, were not the angels
of death he eluded so long ago
Silence Screamz Nov 2015
Gloomy skies line the beaches
Treacherous waves battering the landing crafts
Young soldiers getting sick sea in the swells
But their fate is written in front of them

Omaha, Normandy, Gold, Juno and Sword Beach
The day, June 6, 1944

Bullets flying over their heads
Whizzing by in deafening silence
One soldier is killed, then the next one
They hit the beach hard

Operation Overlord is in full swing
156,000 soldiers invade the sands
Duty, devotion and determination
Hell is about to be unleashed

Machine gun nests attack
Mowing down the enemy that invade them
Strike them with hot metal bullets
into blood soaked seas

The smell of war is everywhere
and time slowed to a ticking second hand
Fellow soldiers killed in front of you
No time to think but you have to move on

**** the enemy, **** the enemy
The beaches turn crimson with the fallen
Can not turn back
The chaos surrounds you with a deadly grip

Six days of heavy fighting to unite the beach front
10,000 wounded, over 4,000 dead
Sacrifices of so many
on the day the bullets hit the beach
June 6, 1944 D-Day Remember on this Veteran's Day
after some grey days
comes the sun
   summer heat
spectacle on the Seine

to commemorate

"La Route de l'Armada"
a fleet for tourists
that never was

yet nice to watch
with fireworks
   & stately masts
sails folded orderly
decks scrubbed
the crews all smiles
ready to answer
   all the children's questions

in between
gray & inaccessible
some men-of-war
of more contemporary make

among them
   somewhat tarnished
one single ship
that really carried
allied soldiers
in its sightless hull
on that gray morning

and suddenly
   if only for a moment
you smell the sweat
   of fearful courage
hear ammunition
   click into magazines
the waves break dull
with hollow sound
amidst the crashes
   of firework artillery
that splits the waters
upward from the ground
This is about a show of ships commemorating, sort of,  the landing of the Allies on D-Day in World War II on the coast of France
Gavin Barnard Oct 2014
The walls are closing in,
And time is running short.
This path I have taken
Is reaching its end.

I can't see it,
The finish line.
16 years in the dark
And still no light.

It makes me wonder,
Will I always be
Dark and damp?
Cold like a stone?

Knee deep in stagnant water
With a leak from nowhere,
Dripping away forever,
Only adding to my tears.

Ten thousand I have shed,
Waiting for a light to come down.
Still no hope, still no care.
I lost faith, enough to push everybody away.

Why people break my war machine
And takes all my bullets
And fights D-day for me,
I still cannot comprehend.

16 years I've been defending
Against all those who care.
Defending my sorrow, my tears,
That became me, slowly but surely.

I love myself enough to defend it,
I hate myself enough to end it.
Please, don't fight my fights.
Don't break my work on myself.
In conversation about
the realities of War
a salient observation
surfaced again and
yet again - that current
creators of film or TV
images favour clean,
so fail the filth test
that for troops and those
who tend them once
bullets & shells have
wrought their harm
scar everywhere with
muck & misery - such
crisp white pinafores
and hair so carefully
coiffeured just never
figured - real warfare
harrows like The Victors
& D-Day scenes which
open Saving Private Ryan
as bloodily as any wound.

(c) C J Heyworth June 2014
Stalingrad- Germany wanted control,
But they weren't going to get it. Silly men,
Unaware that they would freeze to the bone
In those harsh Russian mountains.
Is oil worth it?

Torch- the British thought it was a simple plan.
It was, but barely. The soft underbelly,
The Mediterranean to France, through Italy?
Kick the Axis out of North Africa?
Piece of cake.

D-Day- a finale? Maybe. The ships and planes at the ready,
A possible surprise. Parachutes
And men on foot storming the beaches of Normandy.
Shots fired, push east where they belong.
Coming from the North and South. Cinch like a corset
Strings are drawn against the axis.
Good luck holding up your empire in this day and age.
Rhia Holder Jun 2014
My great grandfather stood on the sixth of June
Nineteen forty four hoping to return home soon.
A non-wavering ball at the pit of his belly
Told him constantly that he was not ready.

He feared for his life, his safety, his wife;
Being stood at home holding a bread knife,
Making sandwiches with that same non wavering ball
Hidden tidily away for the safety of them all.

His children knew he was on a boat
Being so brave that they could gloat
About how their dad was marching around,
Saving innocent people n that stolen ground.

But what they didn't know quite then
Was how his life very well may soon end.
Fighting with hundreds of thousands of worries soldiers
On five thousand ships not nearly as strong as boulders.

For the day he fought with many men
Against not all Axis; only ten
Thousand but still quite a few
Because he knew so much justice was overdue.

People back back at home saw only weeks before
Large green vehicles passing by their door.
The children wondered and parents knew why,
But not as much as the soldiers about to pass by.

The soldiers said "Don't fear for me,
I'll be back home so soon you wont miss me!"
My great grandfather said the exact same thing
To his wife, his kids, although not willing.

Of the three thousand that died on that day alone,
My great grandfather was lucky to be one
Of my family to come home life intact.
I am just grateful that God had his back.

For all of those that did die on that day
The memory of their bravery will never go away.
we will always cherish the thought of their fearlessness,
Their courage, determination and dauntlessness.
i wrote this poem to enter into a competition :)

— The End —