MONDAY: Remembrance Day at Lion’s Head

BY SAL WYLIE

Copyright is held by the author.

Our impatient feet knead the soft ground freshly soaked with rain
sinking slightly,  we wonder how soaked our shoes will get,
we’re unfocused
until the pastor reads ….  in Flander’s Fields.

What of those soldiers’ feet, their boots worn thin,
with holes, no soles
too big, too small,
the winter mud and freezing snow
cordite in their face, plugging their nose;
not like here,
on a clear November morning watching wreathes held by old hands.

Next to us, just on the other side of the fence, a clothes line of t-shirts catches the wind,
then the long-sleeved white shirts,
they fill with wind, long arms dangling,
row on row
waving to the crowd of townsfolk  clustered with the veterans, the trumpeter and the vicar.

The shirts, straining against the clothespins, stretch out, as if calling
“Remember me”, they flutter………… ghosts in empty sleeves.

5 comments

  1. Mary Steer

    I like how the shoes lead to the shirts: the shoes of those attending, the shoes of those long-ago soldiers, the long-ago soldiers waving through the shirts on the line. Favourite part: “watching wreathes held by old hands”. Very evocative.

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