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Aimee McDonald Dec 2018
I've seen your trenches,and I've seen your graves,
I've heard of your weapons and heard of your slaves,
I've imagined the fumes and imagined the rain,
I've imagined the sights but can't imagine the pain.
Not from bayonets,nor shrapnel blasting out,
But from the vision of the gunshot taking the Fritz down.
From the riddling guilt as your hand pulled the trigger,
Which wiped out the unknown,young German figure.
From the nightmares of his family collapsing at the news,
That their beloved son had succumbed to his wounds.
You look over these beaten fields awash with confusion,
Wondering how on Earth humans partake in such delusion.
How they thought,somehow,it'd be the most fitting plan:
"To sort out all of the world's problems-set man after man!".
You walked out on that field regardless, till your last dying breath.
And you made sure,under all circumstances, to fight until death.
For this I'm forever grateful and still can't suffice,
Why we give you two minutes a year, when you gave us your life.
Erin Beer Nov 2018
In 1914 when the cold wind blew,
Through no-mans land with a familiar tune.

In two opposing languages,
Both sides sang,
In perfect harmony,
Their voices rang out.

Two brave souls who started it all,
Risked their lives for a game of ball.

Germany and UK played side-by-side,
Enemies who became friends despite their divide.

A Christmas truce and a miracle of war,
A handshake that would become much, much more.
WW1 truce - Christmas day game of football. Inspired by the Morrison's 2014 advert.
James Khan Nov 2018
One hundred years, it perseveres,
Has slowly turned like grinding gears
From La Bassée to La Boiselle,
The poetry of living ****
As sung by traumatised trouveres,

Of youth then doomed by chants and cheers,
Grandeur, the ghost that interferes
In both machine and in the shell,
One hundred years

And still the saline, blood and tears
Yet memory, it disappears,
An epitaph in stone may tell
Of sacrifice and 'fare-thee-well'
Yet whom will cry for cavaliers?-
One hundred years.

Readers of Owen and Sassoon will recognise the line references from famous poems.
Amanda Nov 2018
In a land of silent birdsong
Where happiness dies
And the living share the dead
With a community of flies
Where the explosions deafen the silence
And whispers of forgotten hope
Watch as fire welcomes the dawn
And float away like bubbles of soap
Too young to vote, but grown enough to die
Stand strong, stand true, their sergeant sings
So proud and brave they face the flurry
Of killing hornet stings
And as they charge across the killing field
They can’t know at that dark time
How their sacrifice would change
All the lives, ever after. That’s yours and mine
Chris Neilson Nov 2018
You don't look you see
you don't listen you hear shells
a no man's land death
The first 2 lines are from interview footage I saw today from a WW1 British soldier filmed in the early 1960s. This would be the same for all nationalities who lost their lives in the horrific European trench warfare from 1914-1918.
Dante Algheri Nov 2018
The sound of whistle
A rattle of gunfire
Dodging the shrapnel
Straight over the barbed wire

Heading towards the enemy, I hold my breath
Say a prayer, as we plunge into our death
Through the smoke, mud and lead

Our foe lies just ahead
Clasping my rifle tight
Their guns ablaze with spite

We get so close, yet still too far
With burst of fire I go down
No one near, I choke a cry
No one hears, my time is nigh

See my comrades falling down
In the shrill their voices drown
The wailing shells - our passing bells

Soon my friends we'll meet again
And so we die at Passchendaele
Terry Collett Aug 2018
Accidentally fell
into a small clearing
in a wood

to escape from battle
and saw the bodies strewn
line on line hundreds

of soldiers by soldiers
some whole as if sleeping
other not so

loss of limbs
or damaged beyond recognition.
He stood still and stared

and wearily leaned against a tree
some of these he'd known
had smoked and joked with

and talked of home
and fireside chat with
now lying here dead

and still and silent
except for the firing of guns
and rifles and bombs exploding

in a nearby field
just thrown here
like so much wasted goods

or carcasses of dead meat.
He lit a cigarette
with shaking hands

and closed his eyes
and pretended he was home
and safe and in his mother's arms

or by the fireside
looking at the flames
then a bomb exploded

extra loud
and he couldnt recall
any of their names.
© 17 minutes ago, Terry Collett
Bang! Bang! Bang!
T'was like a never-ending siren.
With trauma engraved minds,
blood on their hands,
comes bravery
in each man's heart and soul.
The battlefields are their cage,
they got themselves in,
but cannot get out.
Snowflakes sprinkle down from the sky like fallen men,
While the soldiers wait like sitting ducks,
before coming face to face with death again.

Still. Still. Still.
Without the squealing bombs,
and earth shattering shells,
all seemed to be oddly still.
For the first time in forever,
almost as if they were frozen in time.
You could feel the silence
that hung over that wasteland,
on the very night,
of December 24th, 1914.
A mixture between tension, curiosity and confusion,
wafted through the British trenches like incense.
And those three feelings,
were the only things that loomed in the sky,
until an all too familiar tune filled the night...
Sweet, muffled melodys filled the air,
as a German silent night,
was being sung everywhere.

Tranquillity took over each soldiers heart, as they realised in that moment,
It was Christmas days start.
Though they longed for their families,
something felt true,
as German symphonys whispered,
through the night airs gloom.
And soon, the Englishmen had all joined in;
sounding somewhat like a broken choir, but to them,
It was amazing.
Something felt right,
something felt fair,
and that was the hope,
they needed to share.

Voices. Voices. Voices.
Bouncing off the walls of each trench,
of both German and Englishmen,
from both sides of the fence.
The song, silent night,
hung in the breeze,
just like twinkling lights,
laced around a Christmas tree.

Loud melodic Voices,
Flooded through the battlefield,
soldiers grinning from ear to ear,
while their hearts sung wonders.
But little were they sure,
that the singing wouldn't be the only alien sound they heard, that Christmas day or more.

Footsteps. Footsteps. Footsteps.
Feet crunching on the crisp leaves.
Englishmen were cautiously fumbling to see out of their trench,
Only to find Germans,
Wearily emerging from their wire.
Every weapon was lowered,
and suddenly,
possible peace approached.
Soldiers then,
from both sides of war,
came out from their place of stay,
and were civil,
for what Christmas they saw.

As dawn broke,
Christmas day approached,
hands were shook,
smiles were shared,
as a glimmer of hope
flew around in the air.
Football, cards, carols and more:
christmas bought them all together,
as snow fell heavy on the floor.

Loyalties didn't count for that day,
however all those hours after,
once that first bomb went off in the distance,
it was like an alarm going off,
the alarm going off and saying
"Wake up! Wake up from this dream, and go back to harsh reality".
And it was safe to say,
that not one of those men wanted to wake up.
But it was not an alarm,
as much as it sent the same message,
It was a warning instead.
A warning that they had to go back to their duties right away.

Smiles, frowns,
and sad looks all around.
Frohe Weihnatchen!
Merry Christmas!
And all went back to their grounds.
A Christmas spirit was spread that night,
which might have been the thing,
to save a mans life.
Back to work,
it was war again,
but they never forgot,
they made a friend.
Whatever the rules,
they knew it felt right.

Silent night.
Silent night.
Silent night.
A peice on the Christmas truce in ww1. May we remember those who lost their lives as we read this, and may they all remain in peice, with pride.
Brandon Conway Jun 2018
Tie your shuka on your shoulder
Gather your shield and spear of death
The white God for now you are to soldier
Find your courage and take one last deep breath.

You thought war was made of
Those things that you gathered,
You were wrong, so we shoved
A gun and ammo for you to lather.

This is your duty, and that's what you believe  
This is your duty, go out and try not to bleed
This is your duty, and that of thy enemies.

You held the gun like we showed
You walked to the place we told
You believed the lies we sold
All while wearing the white man's blindfold.

With a smile and a glimmer of hope
The men you sought
Found you first
And now you rest
Under the dry dirt.

But that's ok for they
Were only shooting
In the name of Duty,
So Hooray!
zero Jun 2018
Beatings. Cries. Shells raining down like
tears from his mothers face! Another coffin
to pay for in all this madness. Who cares if
she's lost everything she held dear to her?
She's screaming;
"He's too small for all this space!
He's too small for this place! His boots
don't even fit him right!"
Limping up and down up and down towards
the end and even then his eyes won't stay open;
all this fighting for what? Another war?
Another scream? Another ten million voices silenced at
the hands of word like bullets.
With the rampaging, and the madness,
the air becomes too much.
Things like to implode and combust like silence does...


is that what silence sounds like?
defuse our situation.
Please, our bedroom is a bombsite.

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