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Thoughts of the Battlefield
By Norman MacDonald
(D. M. Seon, 7th Canadian Infantry Battalion, France)

Author of "Destiny," A Dual Reformation," "Scragg"

When in mud you're wading knee deep,
Cursing - crying - seeing red,
Listening to the screams of dying,
Stumbling o'er the corpses dead.

Shells are bursting, cannons roaring,
Whizbangs sizzling in the air,
Slush and blood damned Fritzes,
Just like maggots everywhere.

Stinking stenches, blown-up trenches,
Funk holes crammed with human scraps,
Arms and legs and battered faces,
Bodies caught in wire traps.

Every dream of hell is pictured
In a sordid, gruesome light,
Devils prod you onward shrieking,
"Fight you poor weak mortal - fight!"

God! ?tis then like lightning flashes,
D'er your mind whole life's trail,
Seems but yesterday you started
On this road a child so frail.

Years leap by with years in sequence,
Things forgotten crowd your brain,
Every thought so loved seems tenfold
Treasured, wrought in memory's chain.

Every deed is resurrected
From a grave of by-gone years;
You lose sight of your objective,
For your eyes are blind with tears.

Home and mother, sister, brother
Father, loved ones - all are there;
And you laugh and stagger forward,
For you know no word as "fear."

And ?tis they that you onward,
for in you they have their pride,
And they know whatever happens
?Tis for them you will have died.

And ?midst blood and smoke and carnage
You reel on with firm set will,
Shouting "Long live British Glories,"
And to hell with Kaiser Bill!

Original Scans

Original Scans