Charles J. Ingerson

SWALLOWING WATER
(June 6, 1944)

(Prelude:

Ships falling far behind
landing crafts to the beach
bullets clinging in the air
calling us to the shore;

Yet blackness and sweats
nightmares called dreams
entering water churning
ever forward to the shore!)

Struggling in the waters
snipers on the far beach
gasping for breath/safety
ever toward to the shore

Crossing barricades wires
pushing fallen comrades
calling for the medics
ever forward to the shore

Praying aloud and soft
needing a miracle of love
prayers of those far away
ever closer to the shore;

Some now on the beach
forming up into ranks
following inland with others
ever closer to the shore

Tanks now landing too
returning fire as possible
slipping in the water’s depth
ever closer to the shore;

Swallowing water salty
on hands and knees
then again to stand/walk
now here upon the shore

D-Day called by some
minding one of carnage
part of war’s own hell
now here upon the shore

Found coughing harsh
sputtering up the surf
as always and forever
now here upon the shore!

(Addendum:

Friends and loved ones
prayers heard far away
soldiers lost into old dreams
screaming for another’s aid
now forever upon the shore!)