When they ask "Why?"

Discussion in 'All Anniversaries' started by Roger V, Nov 1, 2011.

  1. Roger V

    Roger V Junior Member

    Why Do We Still March?

    Why do you still march old man
    With medals on your chest?
    Why do you still grieve old man
    For those friends you laid to rest?
    Why do your eyes gleam old man
    When you hear those bugles blow
    Tell me why you cry old man
    For those days long ago.

    I'll tell you why I march, young man
    With medals on my chest
    I'll tell you why I grieve young man
    For those friends I laid to rest
    Through misty folds of gossamer silk
    Come visions of distant times
    When boys of very tender age
    Marched forth to distant climes

    So young they were, with blossom cheeks
    Their eyes shone bright and clear
    Scant knowledge of this sinful world
    Thought nought of hate or fear
    Their laughter rang through strange bare rooms
    Hardships, they were soon to know
    All they knew, was beyond their shores
    Was a deadly vicious foe

    They left behind their boring life
    They had nothing much to give
    so they laid their lives on the line
    so you, young man, would live

    With bayonet, gun and blossom cheeks
    The innocence of their youth
    They stood alone, with fearsome pride
    And perceived the awful truth
    The truth they learnt, they had to die
    (it's not easy when you're young)
    the gods of war had chosen them
    and stilled their youthful tongues

    The guns they crashed, the Stukas dived
    Shell tore their flesh asunder
    I smelt their blood, watched them die
    The war lords claimed their plunder
    And as these warrior gods passed by
    They smiled at their obscene death
    Gone were their apple-blossom cheeks
    Scorched by napalm burning breath!

    We buried them in a blanket shroud
    Their young flesh scorched and blacken
    A communal grave newly gouged
    In the blood-stained earth
    And you ask me why I march! Young man
    I march to remind you all
    But for those apple-blossom youths
    You would never have known freedom, at all.

    Bill Ridley
    Za Rodinu likes this.
  2. sapper

    sapper WW2 Veteran WW2 Veteran

    I am writing to you to give you an extract from a speech made by General Bill Slim when he was talking about his Sikh Regiments in Burma that may be use to you whenever anyone asks “why did you do it”? or what were you fighting for?. If you remember when we spoke to the students at Bournemouth University a question along these lines was asked.
    However the extract is as follows:-
    “If ever an army fought in a just cause we did. We coveted No man’s country;
    we wished to impose no form of government on any nation. We fought for the clean,
    the decent, the free things of life, for the right to live our lives in our own way,
    as others could live theirs, to worship God in what faith we chose,
    to be free in body and in mind and for our children to be free.”
    I personally think this says it all and it may be of use to us whenever we asked the question “Why did you do it?”
  3. Oggie2620

    Oggie2620 Senior Member

    Do you mind if I post this on Facebook on the Remembrance Forum and on another WW2 forum? Its really good and I think they will like it too.. :)
  4. Roger V

    Roger V Junior Member

    Sapper; good comment from General Slim.

    Oggie, carry on. I "collected" it from somewhere else and make no claim on it. I always make a point of including the author's name when available though.
    CL1 likes this.
  5. sapper

    sapper WW2 Veteran WW2 Veteran

    That bit was sent to me by my late but very dear friend Derek. Another RE company but "airstrips" It says it all.
  6. Tom Canning

    Tom Canning WW2 Veteran WW2 Veteran

    Roger/ Sapper
    This should be sent to the idiot Gilmour while he completes his "Service" in the slammer
  7. pauldawn

    pauldawn Senior Member

    That poem sums it all up to me.
  8. La-de-da-Gunner Graham

    La-de-da-Gunner Graham Senior Member

    Roger/ Sapper
    This should be sent to the idiot Gilmour while he completes his "Service" in the slammer

    Spot on, Tom.

    A few years ago I spoke to an old veteran who had been receiving hassle from the local scumbags. I said to him, 'Doesn't it grieve you that after all you went through it turned out like this?'
    With no hesitation he said, 'No. I didn't do it for them. I did it for my mates.'

  9. Susan Smethurst

    Susan Smethurst Senior but too talkative

    Roger/ Sapper
    This should be sent to the idiot Gilmour while he completes his "Service" in the slammer

    Well said that man!

Share This Page