- Contributed by
- People in story:
- John Arthur Pickering
- Location of story:
- Normandy Beaches
- Background to story:
- Article ID:
- Contributed on:
- 28 March 2004
The boy lay, trembling, on the sand, crying for his mother;
Rigid with fear, not daring to move, scanning the beach for cover.
Just seventeen: too young to die - too young to be a soldier;
He'd joined the army under age; he'd told them he was older.
And now he wished with all his heart he hadn't been so eager
To put his life upon the line for rewards so scant and meagre.
But, too late now to have regrets - it wouldn't do at all
To wallow in self-pity as he watched his comrades fall.
So, he tried to blank his mind to the terrifying sound
Of screams from wounded men and shells exploding all around.
And, with an inner strength he didn't know he had,
He surged forward with his regiment, this young, courageous lad.
And, against all odds, this boy survived to fight another day,
And came back home to Blighty, having been some years away.
And, do I swell with pride to tell this tale? Yes - rather!
Because, my friend, I'm proud to say that boy became my father.
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