Discussion in 'Burma & India' started by Kyt, Feb 21, 2007.
Found this in a book I've just bought. Nothing on google.
Les Fleurs de Normandie.
On Norman soil, they fought and died.
Now young men's graves in rows abound.
In Mother Earth's arms, now sanctified,
The fragrant flowers of our youth are found.
And yet, to rise again, as in a distant song.
Small voices that call, in dead of night.
Fleeting figures only in our dreams belong.
Alas, they fade, in dawn's bright light.
I see them yet, a sad, forgotten throng.
Shadowed, lost faces, marching on.
Over dusty roads, and high golden corn.
The call of long lost friends are borne.
We must not forget, the flowers of our days,
Lest they lay unquiet, in numbered graves.
For we lived, and loved, and life was sweet.
Still yet, for us, awaits our last retreat.
Flowers of our youth, now long since past.
Our sweet autumn days are fading fast.
We, who are left, flowered in our prime.
Enjoyed golden moments, on borrowed time.
Remember our friends, who passed this way.
For all our tomorrow's, they gave their today's,
On Utah and Omaha, Juno, Sword and Gold.
Oh! Dear Lord! See that they grow not old.
Sapper Guy. June. 1944
Have you sent it to the Burma Star Association yet?
After North Africa, my unit landed in Sicily.
One of the towns we passed through was called Adrano and the impression it made on me was sufficient to inspire the only poem I have ever written or am likely to write. Apart from a slight alteration to the last few lines it remains as I wrote it some sixty years ago and I print it here without comment.
"Darkness was falling as we entered the town, but t'was light enough still to see
The shattered ruins of what had been, a town, in Sicily.
It wasn't much to call a town, compared with those of greater size.
It wasn't built for modern war and now a stinking heap it lies,
Rotting beneath the azure skies, of Sicily.
It seemed as if an angry God had run amok with gory hands,
Then dropped a veil, a canopy, of dirty, blinding, choking sands
And, as to wreak his vengeance more
Had propped a body in each door
We drove on by with sober thought,
Of those poor b******s who'd been caught,
We grimaced at the sick, sweet, smell of this small piece of man made hell
This could be you, the bodies said, this could be you, soon gone, soon dead...
We hurried by, enough to be, alive that day, in Sicily"
Here is some of his work penned in North Africa:
Separate names with a comma.