I am not a natural poet. Seriously. However, as I have had to write some, I figured I’d drop it in here.
Both of these have been submitted for my poetry assignment. The brief was 40 lines, as well as a 1000 word self-critical analysis (which I hated writing even more than the poetry). Piece one was written in about 3 minutes flat after being given the prompt “Imagine a Father”, and piece two was based on a story my 93 year old neighbour told me about when he was captured during WWII in northern France and made to walk to Poland to the POW camps.
Imagine a Father
Imagine a father, if you will.
Blue eyes, crinkles, always a smile.
Car trips down side streets
To discover warships and steam trains.
Friday nights, bags packed,
A whole weekend ahead with
Trips to the beach, hot sun,
Smooth pebbles beneath tanned feet.
Imagine goodbyes, Sunday nights of
Tears and hugs and the scent
Of Old Spice, engine oil and
Old cars with wide leather seats.
Distance only dulling, not crushing,
That ache of separation. Soft edged
Photographs grace childish walls
As English rain patters on cold glass.
Imagine a world of whole families
Not dependent on phones or planes
For the little things like births and
Deaths and school reports.
Where side trips to chase submarines
Were as common as popsicles
On a hot day. Not six thousand miles
In the wrong direction.
Walk to Poland
In France, we surrendered.
Herded through war torn countryside and blasted towns,
Little food, only melted snow in tin cups.
So we walked.
Through Belgium, we went.
Bullet-riddled buildings enclosed deserted market squares.
Men fell, crumpling into the mud
At the side of the road. We walked on.
Across Germany, we marched.
Viewed as hostile by townsfolk and curious children.
Footsore, weary, no threat to any
Save ourselves. Yet still walking.
Into Poland, we stumbled.
Numbering half whence we surrendered.
The camp was bare, basic
But there were beds and food. Rest.