All the Unborn Children
Echoes of guns stuttered near, eggs laid, plans.
There was so much to do. The timer
cast a shadowy proclamation. Yolk yellow sand.
Full and gritty. The pity of war.
Husband as Captain, Fatherland in your smile,
nursing an optimistic, tiny platoon. All so raw.
But I couldn’t fathom the incessant scarlet streams.
Was I mortally wounded?
All the babies never brought to fruition, gurgles stifled,
The birth of death, crosses upon crosses.
The land tried one final blast before zero hour.
Some watched the battle from a higher ground,
their hearts full of dread.
Down to timing again.
The wheels of war.
Dawn, dusk, set in stone.
The shock of the shell - hole at Boissellle, deeper, more
empty than death. There were so many battalions.
There were none. It was over. Was it never to be over?
Eventually the deluge lessened. Dribbled sporadically into
still damaged psyches. Severed limbs are given prosthetics.
Surgeons stitched some sense of days unlived onto
charred faces. It is said some things can virtually be re-grown.
Still. The pounding has ceased.
Your eyes are life itself, hold me and we will say
a prayer for all the dead boys
and all the children
that never were.