Sunday, April 25, 2010

Lest we forget....

To those who served & who sacrificed their lives for our Freedom...."thank you" just doesn't seem enough.

They shall grow not old,
as we that are left grow old.
Age shall not weary them,
nor the years condemn.
At the going down of the sun,
and in the morning,
we will remember them.

I thought I would share an Anzac poem, that I really love.
It was written by Rupert McCall for the 90th anniversary of the landing at Gallipoli, back in 2005.
So I have adjusted the words, to fit in with todays Anzac anniversay - 95 years

If you heard Rupert McCall read this poem at the Gallipoli dawn service back in 2005, I think you would agree that it was very moving....


There on the ship - on that whispering ship
The abyss of uncertainties rest
There on the ship - in the night's eerie grip
His heart leaping forth from his chest
He senses adventure but riding the tide
Is the ripple of chaos to come
His lips hold a prayer that inspires his mind
To be sparing a thought for his Mum
Khaki surrounds him in similar veins
Character ready to flow
Now the landscape is forming - the moment is nigh
Ninety five years ago

There on the beach - on that terrible beach
Dawn filters through as they land
There on the beach some would not even reach
Nothing unfolded as planned
Running and falling! Confusion defined
He scrambles and clambers and claws!
The ridges rain venom - he somehow survives...
But his innocence dies on those shores
From the dearth of a trench - through the fly-ridden stench
Shines the grin with a knockabout glow
Where the slouch hat is worn, a new species is born
Ninety five years ago

There on the hill - that un-winnable hill
He is scared but by God, he's committed
There on the hill, so much young blood would spill
The word 'sacrifice' tragically fitted
In protecting their homeland, the Turks never budge
The high ground is theirs to defend
Death blows a breeze that puts ice in his knees
He prepares now to meet with his end
For a moment, the sky turns a calm shade of blue...
And with that, the commander yells "GO!"
He is hit and it burns - then to peace he returns
Ninety five years ago

There on his grave - on that lost lonely grave
With the others that grimly abound
There on his grave - wooden crosses stand brave
An ANZAC lies under the ground!
Australians - New Zealanders - brothers in arms
Mates on the same team today
"Goodbye and God bless cobber" so say the words
In a strength we could never betray
And this, on the face of a small humble stone
That in winter, is lashed by the snow
"Please cry no tears" he was seventeen years
Ninety five years ago

Here in my heart - with the beat of my heart
I can't help but tremble and shiver
Here in my heart - it's so hard to depart
From the pride that these spirits deliver
For the courage - the kinship - the duty - the dove
The flame of our freedom ascends
Enemies once, now we stand with respect
And continue this journey as friends
Gallipoli - home to a ghost in us all
From a page, pray our children will know
As the legend of ANZAC and lest we forget
It was ninety five years ago

The legend of Anzac...lest we forget
Ninety five years ago
Rupert McCall

Today I am also thinking of the mothers' of these men & boys - how hard must it have been for them, knowing they were going off to war?  Not knowing if they would ever return?
I really cannot imagine what that would have been like - seriously.

I know what it's like to have to send my 17 year old son off to another town for just 3 days every month -  I find it really quite hard, and worry about him a lot. 

So I have a new admiration & appreciation for those women who's son's, husbands, brothers, etc went off to serve in the many different wars over the decades - can you  imagine having to say goodbye to them?
It would have been heartwrenching!
God Bless them all.

I am also thinking of all those diggers from WW1 who were marked as missing in action at Fromelles on the Western Front in France. 
In recent years they have been discovered to be buried in mass graves at Pheasant Wood, near Fromelles, thanks to a man named Lambis Englezos.  Those diggers have now been reinterred into individual graves at a newly built cemetary to commemorate these diggers.  A large percentage of them have also been positively identified using modern DNA technology.
I think this is a wonderful thing for these "forgotten" diggers and their families.
You can read more on this HERE

I learnt all about these diggers at Fromelles from reading this book

I would recommend this to anyone who is interested in this kind of thing - it is a really eye-opening & gut wrenching book that tells the story of the worst battle in Australian History.
5533 casualties & almost 2000 one night.

Fitting in with the Anzac theme of my post, I thought I would re-share a  layout....

My Grandfather, who served in WW1 on the Western Front.

Happy Anzac Day
& Lest We Forget....


Monique said...

Beautiful, Linda - I was crying as I read that poem.
What a fitting tribute to our diggers and their families.

Ebony van der Starre said...

I love this LO Linda! I found your blog on Scrap boutique and just wanted to say HI!

Ceci said...

Thankyou for such a beautiful blog post Linda. xx Your layout is so beautiful too.


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