The Society undertakes to return original "copy" to senders, and stamped, addressed envelopes should of course be enclosed with all contributions.
We publish here two items already received from members of the Society:
The loose door flaps on rusted hinge;
Torn posters of old past rot in mouldy oblivion,
And through the shattered panes the sadness
Of vanished laughter silently reminds.
This is where they all lived before death,
Where their last earthbound smile was seen,
Where their sadness, happiness and love
Sputtered and flamed in fields of war.
Now the dull, steaming cattle crop the wet grass
Where once the aircraft waited; aircraft long burnt
And shattered in flaring skies, cold seas and darkling field.
More than two decades have slipped away
While we the living, as these crumbling huts
In a deserted field, show the ravages of time,
And ponder the valour of the passing of our friends.
Through dangers to the heavens they flew,
From deserts and these quiet green corners.
Now the lowing cattle linger amidst their shades.
Remember, lest we forget,
For our tomorrow they gave their today.
So hushed ... so still
So tranquil now.
Wrapped in a mantle of early Spring.
Beyond the fluttering of two proud Flags
Above long silent guns.
It seems so near ago
That these same silent fields
Resounded to the tramp of untrained feet
Learning to march to War:
That these bright tree-lined avenues
Rang to the strong laughter
And rough warm friendship
Of fine young men
Of divers tongues ...
Drawing together as never before
To forge those bonds of unity
Tempered in blood and heat of battle ...
Tried unto the limits
By the fiery blast of alien faith ...
Did stand and hold
At El Alamein...
Return to Journal Index OR Society's Home pageSouth African Military History Society / firstname.lastname@example.org