Steven J. New

THEIR RANKS ARE SLOWLY THINNING

Their ranks are slowly thinning
but it’s a day they can’t forget
they were once proud young Australians
it still shows in their step
they come together in this way
to remember lost mates on Anzac day
they play a bit of two-up,
and drink a few beers
and remember the sad stories
that accompany their tears
their courage is beyond question
their spirit’s are burning flames
their memories burn forever
with the fallen and their names
their steps a little slower
their number’s are not as strong
but pride shows on their face
as they diligently march along
they fought for our freedom
and a lot didn’t make it home
but they’d do it again to-morrow
if it meant we were free to roam
they march along, with fewer faces
but their reasons are still the same
in blood their history is written
it’s written in the ANZAC name
their legacy our freedom
it was when this land was born
a price paid for in death
that fateful April dawn
they march for those they remember
they march so we don’t forget
the lives that were lived in valour
and died with out regret
so each and every year
on this special day
we stop and remember these hero’s,
and the price they were to pay

Author’s Note: I was moved to write this poem after watching the 2003 ANZAC Day March on television. I can remember, as a child, how long the march lasted: the numbers of ANZACS that weren’t there anymore – my Father included – profoundly moved me.