R. P. Griffin
Taken from the book Interlude.
In many years of wandering and campaign, what have we gained?
What wisdom is our lusty compensate,
What dull claret has become our champagne,
In throaty tales what should the heart relate?
To those who follow should we tell the tale
Of truth and falsehood, anger and man's lust
Of gory stricken bodies doomed to fail,
Yet fated still to conquer Egypt's dust?
Of noble deed, of sacrifice in vain
Attack and counter - Hell without respite.
The calm as stillness held before the rain
Of some deep music softening religious rite.
Of comradeship, that precious flower we hold,
And treasure for all time
The drops of water shared in friendship's mould,
Where every morsel fights against the clime.
Of exile ever teaching at such cost
The fallacies of life before
The bobbing, clamouring of minds storm-tossed,
The sight of bodies languishing or raw.
And so what shall we tell them as they stand
Wide-eyed to hear, absorb, or yet abuse?
Rather, friend, let writing fill the sand -
Tide-washed, becoming soon a silent muse.