Anthony W. Pahl OAM

WAR’S FORGE

IWVPA Double Tap Award for War Poetry
Awarded: Monday July 1, 2013
In the forge of war all boys are wrought
into beings whose only waking thought
is to fight, survive and see it through
in the hope of seeing tomorrow’s dew.

Tempered to form a fragile mind
into a hardened tool that can’t define
the reality of societal norm:
that’s when the automaton is born.

Thoughts of friendships long and strong
are purged in case the mournful song
of death becomes the dreaded sound
that exposes weak and fragile ground

And living with these thoughts of death
(until their last and parting breath)
determines that solitude does become
the preference for those who held the gun

Please, dear reader, don’t get me wrong;
friendships form and the bonds ARE strong
but the need for solitude always will
form a steep and treacherous hill

Judge them not with the cynic’s eye
but offer a shoulder on which they can cry:
feel not sadness for what they lack:
show thanks they went… and came back!