Monday, 11 November 2013

Remembering red poppys; forgetting white feathers

Today is Remembrance day where we stop on the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month to mark the end of World war 1. This war had a profound affect on Australia; the loss of life as a percentage of this young federated nation was massive. The loss of those young men in the years following the war was sorely felt.
In no way is the posting of this poem is intended to devalue the loss and sacrifice of World war 1. It is done so to remember all of our historical past.

White Features and the Great War
'Unconscionable hectoring',  she said, crushing the feather.
  'Two brothers I've lost. And you, your father and sister.
How much of family must family give? What kin can remain?
  They who sent this decline to give their names,
yet pit your conscience against you and are doubly cowards.
  Show me, George, a singular courage and ignore them.
Attend to me, your pregnant wife and sole companion.
 Stay for the birth; deny this war more death.'
But his eyes were far away and his manner agitated;
  to stay he'd have to volunteer and go.
'Here I have to live', he said, 'whatever I do,
  and here my son, or daughter, will question me.
Unlike some men, I'm capable, have height and health
  and no excuse not to offer; I have to go.'
'It's kicking', she cried of their unborn child. 'Put your hand here.'
  It kicked again. 'It must be a boy', he said.
'I'll keep my head down', he told his wife, embracing fullness.
  He'd cup that kick in his hand till the day he returned.
By Timoshenko Aslanides
This is the entry for the 18th July out of the book AnniVeraries: 366 Linked poems, one based on an historical event for every day of the Australian Year.
Previously published poem by Timoshenko Aslanides

1 comment:

  1. We must never forget the sacrifices our men and women and families made for their country in any theatre of war. So sad that so many had to lose their lives which in turn affected all of the families involved.


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