Ann-Marie Spittle

MEMORIES OF PAST TIMES

IWVPA Double Tap Award for War Poetry: November 18, 2004
Awarded: November 18, 2004
See me march past with the others, who remember,
But not with my legs do I pound the parade pathway
Wheeled am I for I am old
But the memories do not die as my comrades did

Little Tommy Tomkins, the London Cockney Sparrow
Died when his head got blown off
And I saw it roll towards me
And I froze, and then I ran

Nobbie Clark always up with the lark
Died in a mortar attack
There was nothing left to send home
So they sent back anyone’s to keep the widow’s memories

The list goes on and here am I alive
When I should be with them
A forgotten body in a Flanders field
Yet here I am

I am the record keeper of the Great War
A war to end all wars they told us
But on they rage like an unchained animal that has tasted human blood
But not mine

I ask myself why not me
And then one day an answer
“Keep these memories and pass them on
That the young may learn and remember”

So here I am being wheeled again
Past the memories of a nation
And I remember Tommy and Nobby
Because nobody else alive does