Ex-Gefangerners Nightmare

Thanks to Denise Chantrey.


The village clock struck loud and clear

It was the midnight chime,

The eerie howl of a dog was heard

Thro' the hush of a winter's clime.

The eyes of a cat shone brightly

As it crouched like a 'Beast of Prey'

While the dew descended softly

On the dawn of another day.


The silence was suddenly broken

Like a bolt dropped from the blue,

For a door was stealthily opened

And a figure appeared in view,

It was clothed in a snowy garment

Like a wraith from another 'Sphere'

With a step that makes no murmur

And a candle burning clear.


As the moon from a cloud comes peeping

We perceived it was a man.

Is it - Robbery! Rape! or Murder!!!

We guess at his evil plan.

With a pace that never falters

He halts at a small clear space,

And a grin of joy spreads quickly

Upon the age worn face.


A fire he quickly kindles

That soon burns red and clear.

And a pot he places upon it,

The contents seem so queer.

Very soon the smell of frying

Assails the morning air.

And crouching upon his haunches

Our prowler consumes his fare.


Then a voice cuts through the still night,

From a window way on high,

"Lord bless my soul" he's off again

Will memories never die?

Those 'brew up years' in Stalag spent

Forever will remain

And once a year when all is still

He lives those scenes again.



Thanks to Nola Muller.


I will be forever faithful and forever true,
Less than all my heart and soul I could not offer you.
Love like ours is based on truth, on loyalty and trust.
Far too beautiful a thing to drag into the dust.
False delights and stolen joys for me no pleasures hold
Little infidelities that tarnish loves pure gold.
I am more than satisfied with your sweet memory
Counting myself fortunate that you should care for me.


News From Home

Thanks to Nola Muller.


News from home Ė how much it means
to those who in some distant place
Hold in sweetest memory a loving 
smile, a voice, a face.


May look dull in black and white - Just 
little items odds and endsÖ
And yet they thrill a lonely heart with
happy thoughts: Old times, old friends.
News from home. A few brief words
can paint a picture on the mind:
The garden seat, the house, the street,
and all the dear things left behind.


The Happy Man

Thanks to Nola Muller.


The happy man is he who takes with joy
Whatever the day may bring.
And with a cheerful courage makes
The very best of everything.



We Forgot to Remember the Promise

Taken from the POW diary of Leonard Lyons, who was a prisoner in P.G.'s 53 and 70 in Italy, and Stalags IVB and VIIIB in Germany. The poem, signed as what appears to be "Jovene", was presumably composed in one of these. Thanks to Jeff Lyons.


We forgot to remember the promise

When sand made our throats parched and dry

That if ever we saw taps left running

We never would pass them by

Since then we've had plenty of water

We've had no occasion to think

So now we forget to remember

And declare 'it's not fit to drink'

We forgot to remember the promise

When hunger was with us each day

That we'd carefully save all the breadcrumbs

And never throw foodstuff away

Since then we've had plenty of Red Cross parcels

And we do not look hungry or thin

You can see we forgot to remember

If you take a look in the bin

We forgot to remember the promise

When the craving for smoking held sway

That we'd carefully save our tobacco

And put all the spare ends away

Now our friends send us cigarette parcels

The craving is not so strong

We gladly forget to remember

And throw them away inches long

We forgot to remember the promise

When we slept with the stars overhead

With the eternal sand for our pillow

And six feet of earth for our bed

Then we swore by all our ancestors

That we'd give all we owned for a bed

But now we forget to remember

And grumble and grouse instead

We forgot to remember the promise

We made when our wardrobe was bare

That if ever we got some new garments

We'd show how long they would wear

Since then we've had clothing parcels

You can lay all the blame on our head

And say we forgot to remember

The use of a needle and thread

But its good to forget to remember

What we promised when things weren't so good

For it shows that the past was a nightmare

We're enjoying ourselves as we should

So let us go on with our longings

And strive for still better conditions

For when we forget to remember

It's because of our British ambitions



Your Smile

Thanks to Nola Muller.


Sweetheart mine keep smiling! I remember you that way.
You were always bright and cheery, confident and gay.
Full of hope and happiness, no trace of doubt or fear.
Thatís how I can see you when Iím thinking of you dear.
Thatís the picture that I keep within my memory
Thatís the vision I can always conjure vividly,
I can do the extra tasks and go the second mile
When upon my heart there breaks the sunshine of your smile.